Dave Carlisle, Musical Director

Dave Carlisle is a third-generation barbershopper who has sung with the Ambassadors of Harmony Chorus since 1994.  He has held many leadership roles with the Ambassadors, and is the current Baritone Section Leader.  Dave was the front-line Director of the Boonslick Chordbusters from 2013-2015.  During his years as a barbershopper he has also been an Assistant Director, Board Member, script writer, choreographer and coach. 

Dave's leadership philosophy is to find joy and fun through artistic singing and meaningful performances, and to empower all members to contribute to the chorus' goals and vision.  He believes in the power of song to heal and unite, and supports creating as many opportunities as possible to introduce people to the unique joys of barbershop.  He became the front-line Director of the River Blenders in September of 2022. 

Bonnie Burke, Assistant Director

Bonnie's Sweet Adelines journey began in 1985, driven by her passion for singing. She started with the River Blenders under the skilled direction of Chery Green. Encouraged to form a quartet, Bonnie joined forces with three talented ladies to create Resolution. Within just one year, Resolution achieved an impressive 3rd place, right behind the winning quartet, Ambiance! This experience ignited Bonnie's love for competition, the exhilaration of adrenaline and the meticulous preparation it entails.

In 1987, Resolution's hard work paid off when they claimed 1st place at Regional contest and went on to place in the top 20 at International competition. They maintained their standing in the top 20 for the next three years; a remarkable achievement cherished by Bonnie.

Continuing her quartet pursuits, Bonnie explored harmonies with different voices, including HighPoint, Great Day, Spring Training, Hooked On Tonics and Timeless, which achieved an impressive 11th place at the International competition.

Guided by River Blenders Chorus retired Director, Diane Huber (Bass of Ambiance quartet), Bonnie experienced tremendous growth as a singer.  She has held various positions within the River Blenders, such as Lead section leader, guiding the voices of her section for many years, and is also a Personal Voice Instructor.  Bonnie is also Assistant Director, Section Leader and Past Vice President of the St. Louis Vocal Project, a four-part a cappella harmony chorus affiliated with Harmony, Incorporated, an international organization of women’s barbershop choruses.  Most recently, Bonnie was appointed as the River Blender Chorus Assistant Director and is honored to assist Dave Carlisle with the realization and vision he has for the chorus.

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