Mission and History

The Zia Singers are a Santa Fe women’s community chorus under the direction of Aaron Howe and accompanist Deborah Wagner.


Mission Statement

The Zia Singers is a diverse group of women with a wide range of prior musical experience who simply love to sing. The Mission of the Zia Singers is to provide women in the Santa Fe area with a choral organization that:

  • fosters creative expression through singing;
  • strives for musical excellence through the process of continued learning;
  • inspires interest in the choral arts through performance;
  • builds bridges and camaraderie among its members, its audiences, and the public.



The Zia Singers, a Santa Fe women’s choral ensemble, originated as a group of voice students of singer and voice teacher Marilyn Barnes. Founded in 1993, that first group of women met in Marilyn’s living room to sing just for the love of making music together. The choir continued under the direction of Kenneth Knight from 2003 through 2011, when conductor Dr. Karen Marrolli took the baton. After her departure in 2015, Interim director Cora Harms led us in singing until we hired our new director, Aaron Howe, in Jan. 2016. Over the years, the group has grown into a performing ensemble of up to and over 35 voices, which offers performances twice a year to the public.


Singing for the Love of Music

Each January, the Zia Singers present a winter program of more serious, traditional & classical choral music, and in the spring, a pop/broadway program called the Dessert Concert. The singers’ favorite desserts are served at the concert of popular American songs of the 20th century. The Zia Singers give the gift of music to the Santa Fe community through performances at retirement homes and through charitable fundraising activities. They have sung with the Men’s Camerata, Canticum Novum, New Mexico Gay Men’s Chorus & the Rio Rancho Youth Chorus.

The Zia Singers rehearse on Tuesday mornings, from 9:30 to 11:45 a.m., at St. Bede’s Episcopal Church, 550 W San Mateo Rd, Santa Fe, NM 87505. Dues are $35 per month, plus each member pays the cost of their music. We are open to all women, 18 years and up, after a brief, simple audition with our director.

In 2016, the Zia Singers applied for and were granted 501c3 non-profit status. We are now eligible to receive tax-deductible donations!