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Meet our choir director
Katie Johnson joined Les Genevoix at the very start of this exciting project, bringing with her an amazing energy to build the community, tremendous passion for all type of music and great experience as a choral conductor.

Can you tell us who you are and your background?

My name is Katie Johnson. I'm a choral conductor, private voice instructor and music teacher from Texas in the USA. I've been living in Geneva for the past five or so years. I grew up performing in choirs and show choirs and playing piano. I've worked with school choirs, community choirs and church choirs, so I've conducted singers from 3 years old all the way to 90-something years old.

Why a Gay Men's Choir?

When I lived in Texas, I conducted a men's choir at a church, and it was an absolute blast. Not only were the guys great, but men's voices can be really versatile, so you can do a lot of different kinds of music. I love conducting any chorus, but when I was approached to possibly conduct a gay men's chorus in Geneva, I immediately jumped at the chance. In a city like

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Geneva, life can feel transient. People come and go every few years. So to be able to build something that could make people feel a little more at home and part of a community is an honor for me.

 

What are your objectives for Les Genevoix?

Right from the start, my objectives are to have a lot of fun and just enjoy singing together. For the future, I want Les Genevoix to be able to perform any type of music at a high level of singing, while maintaining a great sense of community.

 

How does it feel to be the only woman surrounded by all men?

I'm used to working with a lot of different groups of people -- be it all women, all men, all girls, all boys, all children, etc. Every group has different personalities, no matter the gender, so really, I'm excited to find out more what our group's personality will be!

 

What are the most played songs in your playlist?

I love almost anything and I get into certain phases where I am obsessed with certain artists or songs. Since I don't drive in Geneva, I never listen to the radio anymore, so I listen more to old music -- 90's throwback, musical theatre, classic rock, jazz. I also have a three-year-old daughter, so right now I don't get to choose the playlist as much... it's basically all Frozen.

 

What is your musical guilty pleasure?

 

Back in Texas, I grew up listening to lots of country and western music, so those songs will always be close to my heart. But I do have to admit that even before I had a daughter, I loved almost anything Disney. One of my first dreams was to become a Disney singer. It doesn't make me feel guilty, but it is nice having a good excuse (a child) to listen to all of my favorite songs from my youth.

 

If there was only one song during this confinement, which one would it be?

I feel like there are two songs that are defining my confinement right now: Let It Go and Into the Unknown. If anyone has heard a three-year-old and a woman singing Let It Go as loudly as possible at any time of day, you probably live in my neighborhood. Thankfully, the neighbors are forgiving and haven't complained.

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