The Women of Fire


Beth Neville Evans: Beth Neville was born in Japan to missionary parents and studied music in college. She has worked as a dressmaker, non-profit founder and church music director. She now enjoys the company of five of the world’s cutest grandchildren. She joined Fire in 2013.

Amy Halliday: Amy works as an editor at a management consulting firm and is married with three (almost) grown sons. Choral singing has been an important part of her life since elementary school. She joined Fire in 2015.

Linda Hanson: Linda has decades of experience as a Charlottesville organist and choral conductor. She started Fire as a gift to herself in 2006. In addition to serving as the group’s conductor, Linda is a frequent composer and arranger of Fire’s music.

Dottie Salvatierra: Dottie is a retired writing teacher for children with special needs and now enjoys having time to spend with her six grandchildren. She grew up in a musical family and has always loved to sing. She recently moved to Charlottesville and joined Fire in the fall of 2017

Leslie Scheuer: Leslie relocated to Crozet after retiring from a career in nursing, most recently as a high school nurse. She started singing when her mother signed her up for the junior choir at her church as a child, and has enjoyed singing in school, church, and community choirs since then. She joined FIRE in 2022.

Kristin Layng Szakos: Kristin is a writer and editor who recently retired from Charlottesville City Council. The daughter of an opera director, she has followed music in many directions, from punk to gospel to bluegrass, but loves a cappella harmony singing best. She joined Fire in 2011.

Donna Tolson: Donna grew up singing in her family and school choirs, and has been part of her church choir for more than 25 years. She joined Fire in 2019. She finds choral singing to be a wonderful complement to her job as an administrator at the University of Virginia Library.

Nancy Verwest: Nancy is a retired school counselor who enjoys gardening, walking, knitting and singing. She still works part-time with children. Nancy was a founding member of Fire.

Mary Welby von Thelen: Mary Welby is a software developer who loves to tinker with music and graphic design projects in her spare time, and writes a creative humor blog at She plays the piano and guitar and has enjoyed a lifetime of singing. She joined Fire in 2012.

Rahima E. Wagner: Rahima was born into a musical family. In addition to practicing as a body worker, Rahima is the concert master of a chamber orchestra and plays violin for local Sufi dances. She joined Fire in 2008.

Debbie Weaver: Debbie graduated college with a degree in musicology and choral music has always been an important part of her life. She has sung with church choirs, high school and college ensembles and a light opera company. She joined Fire in 2012.


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