Wisconsin Singers Professional Staff
Georgi comes from a tradition of excellence, having developed the Hayward High School Choral program over the past 25 years to the level of achieving state and national acclaim. Georgi has her undergraduate degree from UW Platteville in Choral Music Education with an Instrumental Education minor, as well as a Master of Education - Professional Development from UW-La Crosse. Her choirs competed nationally thirteen times where they received gold and silver ratings.
Georgi was a Wisconsin Singers show sponsor for 19 years and attributes her students’ continued growth and motivation to this ongoing partnership. She comes to the Singers program with enthusiasm, professionalism, and a passion to “do the little things right” in music and life.
Robin Whitty-Novotny has a long history with the Wisconsin Singers program, having performed in the troupe as an undergraduate at UW-Madison and serving as Artistic Director/Producer from 1990-2016. Robin has her Master’s degree in Music Education with a concentration in voice, and travels extensively as an adjudicator for choral and show choir competitions. She has worked to build the Singers program into a comprehensive music experience that values professionalism and service. Robin is married to Singers alumnus, Chris Novotny and is blessed to have three beautiful grandsons.
Chad has been choreographing the Wisconsin Singers show for 13 years. His choreography credits include serving as assistant choreographer for the first Broadway revival of “Bye Bye Birdie” starring John Stamos and Bill Irwin, the Disney film “Old Dogs” with John Travolta and Robin Williams, the 2012 Winter Ball for The School of American Ballet at Lincoln Center, productions in the New York Fringe Festival, off-Broadway at Urban Stages and Ars Nova. He was associate choreographer for the Broadway productions of “Urban Cowboy” (2003 Tony Nomination/Best Choreography, Melinda Roy), “Master Harold and the Boys”, “Showboat in Concert” at Carnegie Hall and City Center’s revival of “Can Can”, starring Patti Lupone. He has performed on Broadway, at The Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, The Cannes Film Festival and in Broadway national tours. Chad has written and performed two award-winning sketch comedy shows in New York and is currently workshopping his first screenplay.
Director of Business Operations
Chris Novotny is a Wisconsin Singers alumnus who has served on the Friends of Wisconsin Singers Executive Board since its inception in 1994. A UW graduate (BBA ‘97/ MBA ’11), Chris is currently CFO/COO of On-Site Studios, a national virtual video production company. He provides business oversight to the Wisconsin Singers program, to which he attributes much of his success.
Jess Mullen, hailing from West Chester Ohio, earned his Bachelor’s of Music Education at Ohio State University, where he played saxophone in a variety of jazz and classical ensembles. After receiving his undergraduate degree, Jess taught band and general music for Chicago Public Schools. Following his career with Chicago Public Schools, Jess completed his Master’s Degree in Music Education at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Currently, he is working towards his doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction here at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he supervises music education practicum students and teaches courses in popular music. Jess brings more than ten years of experience as a music educator, as well as a love of jazz and popular music, to the Wisconsin Singers.
Kristine Bendul is honored to be working with the Wisconsin Singers. Kristine brings with her the experience of dancing in seven Broadway shows, most recently “Cinderella”, for which she was the Assistant Choreographer and partnering consultant. In addition to being nominated for a Helen Hayes award for her work in “Movin’ Out”, other theater credits include performing Live at Lincoln Center and five Broadway productions with the City Center Encores series. You may recognize Kristine from NBC’s “Smash” or, most recently, Baz Luhrman’s Netflix show, “The Get Down”. As a choreographer, Kristine has been creating works for Broadway Cares - Equity Fights AIDS’ highly profiled annual events Easter Bonnet and Broadway Bares Fire Island. She has choreographed for immersive theater, musical showcases, a music video, and the International Hustle & Salsa Congress. In August, she was asked to present a piece for The Actor’s Fund benefit, Dancers For Good hosted by Bebe Newirth. Kristine’s newest achievement, however, is as an author & illustrator of “Noodles Needs a Nap,” a children’s book which was inspired by a character she played in Broadway’s Cinderella. Kristine is ever grateful to Chad Schiro, whom she has known throughout the years in show ‘biz’ for sharing this incredible experience with her.
Robert Dietz is a multiple CARA winning arranger who has been producing, performing and teaching contemporary acappella music for over ten years. His career began in high school as director of the critically acclaimed group Ascending Height, with whom he produced the first all-original high school a cappella album. Robert has studied at the Australian Institute of Music in Sydney and at the Ithaca School of Music, where he directed the award winning all-male group, Ithacappella. Robert was an arranger and group coach for seasons three, four and five of NBC’s “The Sing Off”, as well as a vocal percussionist for the Warblers on Fox’s hit show, “Glee”. He is a founder of“A Capella Academy” and also maintains a web-based business for arranging, writing and producing music of all styles.
A New York-based music director, arranger and copyist, Andrei holds degrees in music from UW-Eau Claire and the University of Illinois. Recent projects: Dr. Seuss’ “How The Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical” (National Tour) (Keyboard 2/ Associate Conductor); music direction at 54 Below, Birdland, and the Laurie Beech- man Theatre; “The Phantom of Monster Lake” (copyist).