Meet An Octave Above.

Based in Chicago these 8 accomplished musicians, each with outstanding solo quality, blend into some of the most beautiful and exciting live performances and studio recordings you’ll ever hear. They’re also incredibly versatile with a repertoire that’s deep and wide: original arrangements and covers from the Beatles, to pop rock, to new metal, 50’s doo-wop. A cappella jazz covers of the Swingle Singers, Manhattan Transfer and The Real Group. There’s disco, holiday favorites, and originals you just won’t hear anywhere else. Be the best singers for a band or orchestral work, An Octave Above has been featured in the Duke Ellington Sacred Concerts with the DuPage Jazz Band, with Michael Lerich and his orchestra and three times with the Elgin Symphony’s “Home for the Holiday’s Spectacular.” If you need a great performance, you just have to go with An Octave Above.

Jennifer Gingrich, soprano

Jennifer graduated from Northern Illinois University with a Bachelors Degree in Vocal Performance. Throughout college she performed with the jazz and madrigal choirs as well as the opera workshop. Her musical theater roles include "Yum Yum" in The Mikado, "Hanna" in The Merry Widow and "Gertie" in Oklahoma. Her opera roles include "Angelica" in Suor Angelica, "Susannah" in Susannah, "Paquette" in Candide and "Ivy" in Before Dawn. She has also performed in the chorus of Don Giovanni and Elixir of Love. She has been a soloist with the Kishwaukee Symphony as well as the Arts Center Jazz Ensemble, sung with Grant Park Symphony Chorus and the New Classic Singers and is currently a member of the Chicago Symphony Chorus. Jennifer teaches private voice lessons and is the mother of two beautiful children.

Meredith McGuire, soprano

Meredith's experience in music is extensive. Originally an instrumentalist, she received a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education from Northern Illinois University and a Master of Music Degree in Music Education from Silver Lake College. As a performer, she has sung with NIU's infamous touring Jazz Ensemble, the Moraine Valley Community College Jazz Band and the Chicago Symphony Chorus to name a few. She has done studio work for local artists as well as small, independent record labels. As a clinician, she has worked with a number of area high school choral and vocal jazz ensembles. She is a singer, pianist, flautist, arranger, clinician and educator. Currently, Meredith is the head choir director at Oak Lawn Community High School.

Elizabeth Hutchinson, alto

A native of Bloomingdale, IL, Liz attended the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. In addition to singing in the Women's Glee Club and Concert Choir at U of I, she was a member and music director of an all-female student-run a cappella group called The Illinois Rip Chords. Before graduating, Liz directed the choir and sang in the praise band at Mahomet United Methodist Church in Mahomet, IL. In 2011, Liz was named "Outstanding Graduating Senior in Choral Music Education" by the University of Illinois School of Music. She currently teaches choir and music theory at West Aurora High School in addition to performing at weddings and other events with the TVK Orchestra.

Debra Wilder, alto

Debra Wilder graduated from Bradley University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music, emphasis on Vocal Performance. Her musical theater experience includes My Fair Lady, Oklahoma, Bye Bye Birdie, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Ruddigore, and It's a Grand Night for Singing. She has played many operatic roles including "Rosina" from Barber of Seville, "Carmen" from Carmen, "Mother" in Ravel's L'Enfant et les Sortileges, and she was a chorus member in Aida with Opera Illinois. Debra has won a number of awards for her talent including the Bradley University Concerto Aria Competition and the John Davis Vocal Music Scholarship. Soon after graduation, Debra became a member of the Chicago Symphony Chorus, Grant Park Symphony Chorus and the St. Charles Singers. In 2003, Debra received her Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education and is an educator with Bright Horizons Family Solutions. She loves spending her days as a lead-teacher for a classroom of two year old children.

Chris Moan, tenor

Chris Moan has also been seen around Chicago performing theatrically with the Buffalo Theatre Ensemble, The Beverly Arts Center and as the stage director for the touring children's production Frog the Musical. In addition to performing, he has taught voice lessons at various suburban high schools. Chris received his Bachelor of the Arts in Music from Luthor College and is a member of the American Guild of Musical Artists. In the past he has sung with such groups as the Chicago Symphony Chorus and Choral Sounds of Chicago. He is currently the choir director at Victor J. Andrew High School. He and his wife Joanne have a daughter Evelyn and a son, Soren.

Andrew Toniolo, bass

Andrew is a recent graduate of Elmhurst College and is a proud member of An Octave Above! While at Elmhurst, Andrew was an active member in the music and theater departments as well as the Elmhurst College football team. He was fortunate enough to have been a part of the Elmhurst College Concert Choir, Chamber Singers and the vocal jazz ensemble, Late Night Blues. Since there weren't any a cappella groups being offered at Elmhurst College, he and eight of his singing brethren started the first a cappella group, Four Feet Long. As a student in high school, Andrew was one of the few men in choir. Consequently, he was forced into the musical theater world; little did he know how much he would end up loving it! In the seven years since, Andrew has logged over twenty five musicals & operettas, nine of which were from the College Light Opera Company in Falmouth, MA with roles ranging from ensemble to lead. He currently holds a Vocal Performance certificate from Elmhurst College. Andrew lives in Chicago and teaches music at Sunset Ridge Junior High School.

Nick Falco

Nick Falco is a singer and educator in the Chicagoland area. Nick is also a co-founding member of An Octave Above, who performs and gives educational clinics both locally and abroad. As a professional member of the Chicago Symphony Chorus, Nick has had the distinction of performing under the batons of some of the world’s most renowned conductors, and alongside some of the finest vocalists and instrumentalists in Classical music. With the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Nick has toured several times to New York’s Carnegie Hall, and had the honor to sing on CSO radio broadcasts, internet streams, PBS television specials, and Grammy Award winning albums. In April 2014, Nick was a featured soloist in the CSO’s Beyond the Score concert series focused on Charles Ives’ 2nd Symphony. Nick’s arrangements for An Octave Above can be heard on two of their albums. In 2007, Nick was awarded for his arrangement of “Tico Tico” at the Harmony Sweepstakes Chicagoland regional a cappella festival. He was also a past member of The Chicago Symphony Singers, and The Grant Park Symphony Chorus. In 2006 Nick fronted the 1950s Birth of Rock ’n’ Roll tribute band, The Crown Vics, and he has also performed as a featured soloist in concert with the Anthony Kawalkowski Orchestra. In addition to singing, Nick occasionally performs as a pianist for private events. An Elmhurst College graduate with a BA in Music Education, Nick currently teaches as a private voice instructor at John Hersey High School, Wheeling High School, and Buffalo Grove High School, overseeing the successes of many talented young singers.

Kris Monn

Kris Monn has been a performer, singer and educator in the Chicagoland area for over 20 years. A founding member of An Octave Above, Kris has performed with the group throughout the city and suburbs for over 15 years. In addition to his work in Chicagoland's finest a capella group, Kris has performed at Six Flags Great America and taught music education for three years before entering school administration. Kris earned his Ed.D. from Northern Illinois University in May 2012 and currently serves as Superintendent for Minooka CCSD 201 in the far southwest suburbs. Kris lives in Aurora with his wife Wendy and their three children.

For booking inquiries contact


Meredith McGuire

708.288.0824

8va.booking@gmail.com