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Hospice benefit concert scheduled for November 22

Becky Worley, Barbara DeGrote-Sorenson and Rebecca Thoennes

Enjoy a multitude of local musical talent while supporting a worthwhile cause.

The Hospice of Douglas County Benefit Concert will take place Sunday, November 22 at 3 p.m. at Calvary Lutheran Church in Alexandria.

Musical performances will be given by Rebecca Thoennes, pianist and Barbara DeGrote Sorenson, vocalist, accompanied by Rebecca Worley.

Free will offerings will be accepted, with all proceeds going to Hospice of Douglas County.

Here's a look at the musicians:

Rebecca Thoennes

Rebecca Thoennes is a dedicated piano teacher, accompanist, and soloist in the Twin Cities. She is originally from the Brandon area.

Thoennes began her music training in this area and later earned a bachelor of arts degree in piano performance from the University of Minnesota, Morris and a masters of music degree in piano accompanying and chamber music from Northern Arizona University, where she received several accompanying and solo honors.

Thoennes has also studied with notable pianists Miriam Braga at the Conservatory of Tatui in Brazil and Willem Ibes at St. John's University. She is on faculties at MacPhail Center for Music and St. Joseph's School of Music, teaching both traditional and Suzuki methods.

She and MacPhail colleague Dr. Chris Granias have collaborated in several performances at Studio Z, Minnesota History Center, Perpich Center for the Arts, among several faculty recitals at MacPhail and St. Joseph's.

They recently recorded an album of Granias' original works entitled: Broken Sweets. In addition to performing, Thoennes has taught at MacPhail Suzuki Institutes, Minnesota Music Teacher's Association conventions, and serves as a vice president for the St. Paul Piano Teachers' Association.

Barbara DeGrote-Sorenson

Alexandria native Barbara DeGrote-Sorensen is returning for her third hospice benefit concert.

A graduate of Concordia College, Moorhead, she sang in the Concordia Concert Choir under the direction of Paul J. Christensen and served as soloist and section leader.

She currently lives in Litchfield and continues to sing on occasion.

She is the daughter of Bill and Joyce DeGrote. Bill, a hospice recipient, passed away in February of this year. Barbara will share several of her father's favorite songs during the concert.

Becky Worley

Rebecca Worley was born in St. Peter but spent her growing-up years in Quincy, Massachusetts.

She began piano lessons at age 6, added organ lessons in 7th grade and held her first organist position while in high school. In those years, she accompanied church choir, and the various choirs in her high school.

Worley attended Concordia College in Moorhead, earning a bachelor of arts degree in music and French. Following graduation, she married Chris Worley and they lived in London.

She studied piano for two years and earned her Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music, London, and was certified to teach piano.

She has maintained a private piano studio for the past 36 years and has served as organist and senior choir accompanist at Calvary Lutheran Church since 1978.