About the Joy of Vox - Vocal Ensemble
Founded in the fall of 2012 by director BJ Harris, Joy of Vox (JOV) started out as 40 singers who all shared a desire to meet on a regular basis and have fun making music together. Now in its eighth season, the group has grown to over 200 members, ranging in age from 19 to 82. The group’s musicians include accompanist Penny Rosten on piano, bassist Bruce Wilkinson, percussionist Lowell McLaren, and a few of the singers who generously lend their instrumental talents on some of the songs, including Siobhan Brennan on flute, and Dave Kernohan on guitar.
The group rehearses on Thursday evenings from September to mid-December, concluding its fall term with Christmas concerts, Broadway Avenue caroling, and a wrap-up soirée. They then reconvene in February for their spring term, which goes until late May/early June, at which point the group concludes the season with its spring show, and another social get-together. Besides its public concerts, the group performs at a variety of charitable events, fundraisers, schools, and seniors’ residences.
JOV performs a diverse repertoire of popular music - songs that one would have heard on the radio back in the 50s, 60s, 70s, and right up to the current day. Musical highlights include songs by A-ha, Adele, Avicii, Bill Withers, Billy Joel, Brian Wilson, Dave Dudley, Eagles, Elton John, Eric Carmen, Fun, Genesis, Harry Belafonte, Holly Cole Trio, Jackie DeShannon, Jeffery Straker, John Denver, Johnny Cash, Joni Mitchell, Katy Perry, Kenny Chesney, Marc Cohn, Matisyahu, Neil Sedaka, Neil Young, Patsy Cline, Paul Davis, Pharrell Williams, Queen, Ray Charles, Regina Spektor, Robert Plant, Roger Miller, Ron Sexsmith, Sarah McLaughlin, Simon and Garfunkel, Steely Dan, Tennessee Ernie Ford, The Andrews Sisters, The Association, The Beach Boys, The Beatles, The Dream Academy, The Irish Rovers, The Mamas and the Papas, The Rankin Family, The Stray Cats, The Tragically Hip, Toto, U2, and many more.
Do you like to sing? JOV is always looking for additional bass, tenor, and baritone singers. Previous experience and the ability to read music are definitely assets, but not prerequisites for joining. If you are interested (or know someone who might be), please go here.
Since graduating from the University of Saskatchewan (B.Mus-Mus.Ed) Penny Rosten has enjoyed a varied career in music as a teacher, accompanist, singer, composer, director, and performer.
For over thirty years Penny has taught piano lessons. She enjoys composing piano music that encourages learning through the student's interests and imagination. Her compositions were published in the “Prairie to Pine” collection of piano solos by Saskatchewan composers. Her piano compositions were also selected as test pieces for the Saskatchewan music festival syllabus.
In the role of Minister of Music at the Lutheran Theological Seminary and music coordinator at Good Shepherd Lutheran church, Penny served as choir director, worship accompanist, and composer of choral music for her choirs. In 2001 Penny co-wrote the musical entitled, “Call Waiting” which was performed by several choirs across Western Canada.
As an accompanist Penny has enjoyed working with various choirs: Meister Singers, Sunshine Gang, Choraliers, and Eclipse Chorus. She is presently employed as accompanist to the “Joy of Vox” choir and the “Kids of Note” integrated children's choir of Saskatoon.
Founder of the band “It's Too Late Baby” Penny enjoys performing as well as writing original songs for her band. In 2011 jazz singer “Donna Hay” recorded some of Penny's songs on her newest Album called “Here's to Life”.
Penny's career in music can be summed up in her own words:
Bruce Wilkinson grew up on a family farm in southern Saskatchewan. After high school, he moved to Saskatoon where he completed his Bachelor of Applied Science (Electrical Engineering) while playing in a band to help pay the tuition. He is still playing bass and is involved in Saskatoon’s music scene, both as a musician and a sound technician.
Bruce has performed in musical theatre productions, big band jazz bands and numerous rock, pop and jazz groups. During the day, Bruce works with Vecima Networks in Saskatoon. His evenings and weekends are filled with family and musical activities.