Board of Directors
Debra Chandler, Chair
Debra is a skilled arts administrator, conference and event producer, and strategic thinker, combining creativity and practicality. She established her consulting practice in 2001, focusing on strategic road-mapping and organizational development, as well as producing several conferences and three editions of the Toronto Bach Festival. A skilled facilitator, Debra led the national Soundings initiative, undertaken by Orchestras Canada (OC) and the Canada Council for the Arts in 2002-2003, as well as a three-year provincial initiative in community building from 2012-15. For seven years, she was National Director of Piano Plus, sharing Canada’s finest classical musicians with smaller and more remote communities across Canada. She chaired the board of High Park Choirs –now Young Voices Toronto – for two terms over 11 years and was founding board member for Art of Time Ensemble. Debra has lived in Toronto for 30 years, but returns to her native Nova Scotia annually to ensure that her children and husband know what clean salt air is and how real the world can be.
Greg Rainville, Director and Artistic Director
As a major advocate of the creation of new and unique Canadian music, Greg Rainville has secured a place in the next generation of Canadian conductors. As a dynamic leader, vocal coach and music educator with an extensive traditional and contemporary classical repertoire, he is a sought after guest conductor and leader of master classes and workshops. During his time as Assistant Conductor of the Orpheus Choir of Toronto from 2008 to 2015, he made his Roy Thomson Hall (Toronto) debut in 2011. In the summer of 2016, Greg was privileged to conduct the Canadian Ambassador Choir during their Australia tour as part of the United Nations Choral Festival “Rhythms of One World”. In November 2015, he also directed the NYSSMA Area All-State Music Festival Senior High Chorus in New York. Greg is a graduate of the Crane School of Music and the University of Toronto. He is a two-time recipient of the Elmer Iseler Fellowship in Conducting.
Arlene Jillard, Executive Director
A retired English and Dramatic Arts teacher, Arlene holds an Honours BA and a B.Ed from the University of Western Ontario. She is an Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto (Vocal Performance) and has sung with many choirs over the years including the Etobicoke Centennial Choir under Barry Gosse and the Gerald Fagan Singers under Gerald Fagan. She has served as a Director on several Boards, among them the British Columbia Girls Choir, Driftwood Theatre Group and Acting Up Stage Company. Currently she is
on the Board of Directors for PAL Stratford.
Tyler Smith, Director
Tyler Smith hails from Calgary, AB and is the youngest of 3 boys. Growing up, he was always involved in music in some form or other, whether it was playing the piano, cello, tuba or singing by himself or in choirs. Despite having no formal vocal training, singing is something that Tyler has always loved to do. He sings first tenor with the Canadian Men’s Chorus as well as in an a cappella quartet called Spadina Station. Tyler has lived in Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, and Vancouver, but has called Toronto home since 1994. Although his true passion lies within the arts, he currently works for RBC as a Policy Analyst. Tyler is always up for having fun and experiencing new adventures. To date, his most exhilarating experience has been skydiving from 13,000 feet!
Jay Wilson, Director
Jay Wilson is an educator, artist and designer. He is a full-time professor of design in the Art and Art History department at Sheridan College, which is the longest-running joint program in Canada, with the University of Toronto at Mississauga. Jay’s art and design career has won him many awards at home and abroad including several Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council Visual Arts Grants. Most recently Jay has co-curated the group art exhibition The Closer Together Things Are with independent curator, Shannon Anderson that is touring Canada and designed the catalogue for the show. Jay was Board member and president of Mercer Union artist run centre from 2000-2003 and sat on the Board of Oakville Galleries in 2009. Jay also sat on the OAC’s Established Artist granting jury in 2012 and was the inaugural recipient of the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts grant. Jay is thrilled to sing with the Canadian Men’s Chorus since 2012. The experience of bringing beautiful music into the world with a great group of like-minded and talented singers has been life changing. He is excited to bring his team-building skills and design acumen to the Board of the Canadian Men’s Chorus.