The Choir at Fort Street is under the interim direction of Dorothy Duensing and sings for the 11:00 a.m. worship service from September through June. Rehearsals are on Sunday mornings from 9:15-10:30 in the choir loft. No audition is necessary, and new members are always welcome.
The Choir sings a variety of repertoire from Baroque to modern day. If schedules do not permit an ongoing commitment, members are welcome to sing for a particular time period, such as for Christmas or Easter.
Leslie Douglass Mason, soprano
Armed with a voice that has been described as a cannon, soprano Leslie Mason has been delighting audiences since 2007, when she completed her master’s degree in vocal performance at Bowling Green State University.
In 2005, she earned an undergraduate degree in vocal performance from Eastern Michigan University. Ms. Mason recently performed the roles of Micaela from Carmen and Lady Billows from Albert Herring with Opera MODO. Ms. Mason recently won the Opera MODO Detroit Aria Competition, including the Christ Church Detroit and Audience Choice prizes, and will be singing in Opera MODO’s upcoming production of Turn of the Screw as Miss Jessel, the dead governess. She is also on the voice faculty at the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, teaches a private voice studio, performs classic jazz with her husband, Jesse, and is mother to four children who, according to Jesse, “have their mother’s pipes.”
Dorothy Duensing, mezzo-soprano
Dorothy Duensing, mezzo-soprano, is “stunning. Her accomplished vocal abilities, stage presence and mysterious beauty… make her the perfect Carmen” (Dearborn Press & Guide). Dorothy is Metropolitan Opera District Finalist, Second-Place Winner of Harold Haugh Vocal Competition and soloist for numerous regional choirs and symphony orchestras including Detroit, Rochester, Jackson, Plymouth, Perrysburg (OH), Clarion (Ontario) Symphonies, and Fort Street Presbyterian Church Chorale & Orchestra. Varied roles in operas & oratorios include long-term engagements as Artist-In-Residence with Toledo Opera Company, Verdi Opera Theatre, Arbor Opera Theatre, Michigan Lyric Opera, Friends of the Opera of Michigan, and Comic Opera Guild. Dorothy holds the Master of Music degree from University of Michigan and Bachelor of Music degree from Indiana University, both in vocal performance, with operatic education through the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria. Her Diploma of Music Ministry in Organ is from Sacred Heart Major Seminary and State of Michigan Professional Teachers Certifications are in K-12 music education (JX) & 7-12 speech (BD), with Orff Schulwerk Levels 1, 2 & 3. As educator, Dorothy teaches “part-time” as Professor of Voice at Wayne State University, Director of the DTE Singers (a.k.a. Detroit Edison Glee Club), private voice instructor in Novi/Northville and Fort Street Presbyterian Church Choir’s Mezzo-Soprano Soloist/Section Leader.
Erika Thompson, mezzo-soprano
Erika Thompson is a private voice instructor who is in the master’s program at the University of Michigan. Erika received her bachelor’s degree in music from Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant. Since moving to southeast Michigan, she has been involved in singing with organizations such as Detroit Opera MODO, Detroit Concert Choir, and UMS Choral Union. Erika has a passion for both the performance and teaching aspects of music and hopes to continue to pursue such opportunities throughout her professional career.
Bill Roberts, tenor
Bill Roberts coordinates regional activities for the Schiller Institute, an organization committed to fostering a dialogue of civilizations and a community of common destiny for the future of mankind. Over the years, this has afforded him the opportunity to study classical music and perform as both a chorister and soloist at concerts in Boston, Virginia and New York, singing the choral music of Bach, German lieder and spirituals. He recently had the honor of helping to organize, as well as sing in, four performances of Mozart’s Requiem in New York City, on the occasion of the 15th Anniversary of 9/11, “Dedicated to all the victims of 9/11 and its aftermath.” In addition to singing with the Fort Street Chorale, Bill currently co-directs the newly launched Detroit Schiller Institute Community Chorus, which rehearses and performs at the Verdi tuning of C=256 Hz.
Kevin Thompson, bass
Kevin Thompson is a lyric bass, originally from Clarkston, MI. He received his bachelor’s degree in vocal music from Central Michigan University in 2015. While at CMU, Kevin sang the roles of Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro, Pirate King in Pirates of Penzance, and Jigger Craigin in Carousel. He is a law student at Wayne State University and hopes to pursue a career in public defense after graduation.
During summer 2018, Kevin worked as a summer associate with Ernst Marko Law in downtown Detroit. The firm specializes in civil rights, personal injury and products liability law, and has won numerous high profile cases in Michigan. Kevin is excited about joining its team and starting to make a difference in Detroit and throughout Michigan.