Artistic and Administrative Staff
karen p. thomas
artistic DIRECTOR and conductor
Karen P. Thomas has served as the artistic director and conductor of Seattle Pro Musica since 1987. With Seattle Pro Musica she has produced ten critically-acclaimed commercial CD recordings, and has received the Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence and the ASCAP-Chorus America Award for Adventurous Programming of Contemporary Music. She has appeared as guest conductor at the Bergen International Festival, International Conference on Women in Music, the Alliance World Festival of Women’s Singing, Festival Vancouver in Canada, the NPR radio show Saint Paul Sunday, and at the American Guild of Organists National Convention and the American Choral Directors Association NW Division Convention, among numerous others. Read Karen's full bio.
Katie Skovholt holds an MBA from Pacific Lutheran University, as well as a Bachelor of Music Education degree. She is a member of Chorus America and the Greater Seattle Choral Consortium and has served on the Board of Directors of the Tahoma Girls Choir. Ms. Skovholt is active on national conference panels and committees and most recently represented Seattle Pro Musica as part of the national cohort of the Intrinsic Impact Audience Project, a two-year study of choral music audiences done in partnership with Chorus America and arts consulting firm WolfBrown. Prior to joining the staff at Seattle Pro Musica, Ms. Skovholt worked for Pacific Lutheran University's School of Arts & Communication.
Ms. Skovholt is in demand as a soprano soloist in the Puget Sound region, hailed for outstanding and expressive singing. Recently, she was a featured vocalist on the 2015 GRAMMY Award-winning album Winds of Samsara. In addition to her position with Seattle Pro Musica, she serves as Director of Music for Richmond Beach Congregational Church.
CAROLINE LITTLE, ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT
Born and raised in the Midwest, Caroline Little discovered her passion for arts administration upon receiving the Oberlin Conservatory Initiative Grant Supporting Imagination and Excellence, which enabled her to travel to Finland to study Body Mapping at the Sibelius Academy. To better realize her newfound passion, Caroline transferred to DePaul University, where she earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Performing Arts Management and a minor in Business Administration. While there she interned with several arts organizations, including the historic Auditorium Theatre in Chicago. Caroline most recently served as an Assistant Operations Manager with the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras.
An avid flutist, Caroline has performed in masterclasses with Jonathan Keeble, Linda Toote, Judith Mendenhall, and Keith Underwood. She primarily studied with Alyce Johnson.
HEIDI J. KIM
SOPRANO SECTION LEADER
Heidi J. Kim, soprano, has had a varied career as a soloist and member of some of the United States’ most prestigious professional choirs. She has sung with Conspirare, the Los Angeles Master Chorale, the Santa Fe Desert Chorale, and the Robert Shaw Festival Singers with whom she appeared on the GRAMMY-nominated CD, Evocation of the Spirit. She co-founded Portland Pro Musica (Maine), an early music vocal chamber ensemble that debuted in 2004 to critical acclaim. She has sung for many internationally renowned conductors including Robert Shaw, Helmuth Rilling, Simon Rattle, Esa-Pekka Salonen, James Conlon, Peter Schreier, and Placido Domingo. She is currently a member of the St. Mark’s Cathedral Choir in addition to serving as soprano section leader for Seattle Pro Musica.
Tenor Section Leader
Jim Howeth, tenor, has enjoyed singing a wide range of repertoire with a variety of choral groups in both volunteer and professional capacities. His early musical training as an instrumentalist (primarily French horn) helped him to develop strong musicianship and sight reading skills, which he has developed further throughout his singing career. Since 2004, Jim has been fortunate to perform with over 25 different community, church, and professional choral ensembles in concerts, recordings, liturgical services, workshops, festivals, and international tours. Around the Seattle area, he has recently appeared in performances and special projects with Seattle Pro Musica, Seattle Symphony Chorale, Opus7, Vox16, and Byrd Ensemble, along with several others. Jim is currently employed as a staff musician at St. James Cathedral, serving as a cantor and psalmist, a section leader in the Cathedral Choir, and a member of the Cathedral Cantorei.
chARLES ROBERT AUSTIN
Bass Section Leader
Charles Robert Austin, bass-baritone, has recently performed as soloist with Seattle Pro Musica in the Brahms' Requiem and Bach’s St. John Passion; at Carnegie Hall with the Rochester Symphony Orchestra performing Howard Hanson's opera Merry Mount; as Bluebeard in Bartok's Bluebeard’s Castle with the Buffalo Symphony and Virginia Symphony Orchestra, and Walton's Belshazzar's Feast (also with VSO); and as Warden George Benton in Vancouver Opera's production of Dead Man Walking. Additional opera performances include appearances with Seattle Opera in La Traviata and Le Nozze di Figaro and Vashon Opera in Die Zauberflöte as Sarastro. For a full biography, visit Charlie’s website.
Jenn Newland joined Seattle Pro Musica as a singer in 2001, and has proudly served on the board and as Auction Committee chair in the past, and now as Stage Manager. Jenn's priority is ensuring performance management details are presented in a focused manner, allowing the singers more time to enjoy the part they love best - singing unique and challenging music beautifully, so as to touch the souls of our audience members.
In her professional life, she is the Property Manager for Rain Shadow Properties and Investments, LLC, and also works part time as a Limited Practice Officer for First American Title.