Grand River Chorus Artistic Team

Grand River Chorus is led by a gifted, professionally trained artistic team that guides the choir’s musical selections, leads them in rehearsals, and directs their concert performances.

Portrait of Ron Cheung wearing a tuxedo

Artistic Director

Ron Ka Ming Cheung, M. Mus.

Ron Cheung is an immensely talented conductor and performer. He graduated from University of Toronto with a Masters Degree in Choral Conducting and holds a Bachelor of Music in Education from McMaster University.  

An experienced choral singer, he has performed with the Toronto Mendelssohn Youth Choir, the Bach-Elgar Choir, the McMaster University Choir and many others. He was a member of the world-renowned Toronto Mendelssohn Choir from 1991-1996 and has toured the world as a choral singer.

His mastery of conducting ensemble and solo voices alongside instrumentals adds a unique layer of depth to Grand River Chorus’s concert performances.

Ron teaches voice and music theory at the Pro Music Conservatory of Music in Markham. He is Founder, Artistic Director, and Conductor of the Yip’s Children’s Senior Choir of Canada, which is considered one of the best chamber ensembles in Toronto.

Accompanist

Ann-Marie MacDairmid

Ann-Marie is a brilliant organist and the primary accompanist for Grand River Chorus. She has been with GRC since it was founded in 1999.

She graduated with an Honours Bachelor of Music degree from Wilfrid Laurier University and a Master of Music degree from the University of Western Ontario in organ performance.

Her talents stretch beyond her role with GRC–Ann-Marie is an accomplished pianist, percussionist and choral conductor and serves as Director of Music at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Kitchener, Director and Accompanist for Shoreline Chorus in Owen Sound, and director of Queen Street Singers. She prepares her programs in a wide variety of musical genres including Baroque, Classical, Spiritual, Gospel, Big Band, Jazz and Blues, Folk, African, Broadway, Movie and Canadian music.

Ann-Marie teaches music lessons locally and freelances as a piano accompanist and organist throughout Southwestern Ontario.

Portrait of assistant director, Cara Blackwood
Assistant director

Cara Blackwood

Cara Blackwood has been Grand River Chorus’ Assistant Director since 2009. She is also a long-time chorister with the choir. 

She holds a Bachelor of Music Degree with Honours from University of Toronto. She taught music professionally for many years as a high school instrumental music teacher for the Grand Erie District School Board before switching to teach her other love–English.

Music is a large part of her life and she is an active chorister with Choral Connection in St. Thomas as well as GRC. When not busy singing, she loves to bake, volunteer for many organizations, and read.