TCC People

Brian D. Uerling, BME, MME, conductor

I was a public school music teacher for 39 years and recently retired to Taos with my lovely wife, Jude, and our rescue dog, Monet. My professional experience includes being a church choir director and organist, as well as a private piano studio instructor, for 47 years. I have directed high school choirs in Albuquerque and Clovis, and most recently, taught music at the elementary school level.

I have toured with choirs in Europe, and was fortunate to play the cathedral organ for Evensong at St. Paul’s, London as well as playing at Notre Dame. I was the New Mexico Music Educator Association’s “Music Educator of the Year” in 2017, and was inducted into their “Hall of Fame” in 2021. Currently, I play the piano for St. James Episcopal Church/Taos at their 8:00 AM Sunday worship service.

We are so happy to be living in Taos with its vibrant arts scene and wonderful people!

Martha Shepp, accompanist

Martha Shepp has given her gifts of music and fine arts the the Taos Community since moving here in 2013. Born in upstate New York, she has been active in arts communities, non-profits, and education wherever she has lived (NM, TN, OH, NH, and the UK) as a soloist, accompanist, and chamber music musician. Her other lifelong love and passion is in visual art, where she earned degrees from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, and the University of Tennessee/Knoxville. She studied piano under Grace Trebert (Eastman School of Music), Alan Crooks (Trent Nottingham University, UK), and Dr. David Northington (University of Tennessee, Knoxville).

She is a founding and board member of the arts and economic development non-profit, Questa Creative Council, and is director of the Questa Chamber Music Series there. Martha is also the collaborative pianist/accompanist at Adams State University in Alamosa, CO.

Board Members

Vice President, Jane Ayles

Jane is thrilled to be part of Taos Community Chorus and has been an avid member for seven years. Apart from enjoying performing with this fun group, Jane directs and acts in local theatre and was last seen directing the world premiere of “Simple Gifts” at Onstage Theatre in Taos. When not trading the boards, Jane is busy baking, working with horses at the barn, walking her own and other peoples’ dogs and hosting at Doc Martin’s restaurant!

Treasurer, Randy Thorne

Randy started in church and school choirs when very young, and has sung all her life. As a young woman, she sang with the USO in the Pacific Command during the Vietnam War. For the past 25 years, she has served as costume mistress with Taos Children’s Theater. Randy recently retired from Taos Pueblo Day School; part of her professional work was publishing educational materials through Scholastic and the Monkey Sisters Publishers.

At Large, Kate Harris

Kate grew up in a musical household with everything from Josh White to Bach to Broadway musicals in the air. She’s been in New Mexico for 40 years, and in Taos for 20. She raised her family in the mountains of Guadalupita with no electricity or running water, singing and playing guitar for her daughter in rare spare moments. Now she directs the Threshold Singers which brings music to people in hospice. And she’s been active in TCC for five years.

At Large, Chris Fairchild

Music has been an important part of Chris’ life since early childhood. She took piano and ballet lessons and sang in church and school choirs starting at the age of 6. She loves a wide variety of music from Monteverdi to Madonna. She has recently retired from her work as an architectural designer and in addition to making music she enjoys attending live musical and dramatic performances, hiking, skiing and cooking. Chris joined Taos Community Chorus in 2011 and resumed her study of piano in 2018.