Musical Director and Conductor

Ken has had a long and varied career participating in choral groups, and more recently, providing direction. He is also a composer of music for choirs. He spent around 10 years singing in the Auckland Dorian Choir under Karen Grylls.

For a number of years he received professional singing teaching from Isobel Cunningham to learn more formally about the singing process. For the last 10 years Ken has been an active member of Harbour Voices (previously called the North Shore Chorale) under the direction of Jenny Firth and then Nicholas Forbes. During this time he was given a number of conducting opportunities.

Ken has been conducting church choirs for many years, mostly at Christmas services. This included organising both the choir and chamber orchestra, doing all the arrangements, as well as conducting the choir and orchestra. He has an eclectic taste in music and is happy with choral arrangements that range from contemporary “rock” music through to jazz standards but with a first love for the classical greats. He is an active member of the Association of Choral Directors and attends many of their conferences, studying the art of choral conducting and attending conducting workshops.

More recently Ken has taken an active role with a small chamber choir called Castorways - a group of 11 singers that regularly put on concerts. The members of Castorways are all accomplished singers and musicians and perform to a high standard.

Susan Elliott

Ken Leech

 Accompanist/Rehearsal pianist

While pursuing an arts degree at university Susan Elliott studied piano privately with Donald Bowick (LTCL) and voice with Phillip Todd (LRSM). In London she enjoyed a freelance career for nearly 25 years accompanying many choirs, both amateur and professional. She did a postgraduate course at London Opera Centre, assisted by grants from the New Zealand Opera Company and Arts Council. 

Back in New Zealand, Susan has been both soloist and accompanist with Tauranga Civic Choir, and Auckland Choral Society. At Saint Matthew-in-the-City, with organist Michael Bell, she founded/directed the first New Zealand professional church ensemble, moving on to direct the choir at St Patrick’s Cathedral.

Having enjoyed her time with KS in 2018/19, Susan is pleased to be resuming this work in 2023, under the
direction of their dynamic new conductor!