Currently Region 19’s 2016 Silver medalists, Neon Lights’ musical journey began in October 2014. Even though they are a relatively new group, these women are no strangers to the stage. Filled with many backgrounds including classical, musical theater, opera, and of course barbershop, this vibrant quartet is very versatile and loves ringing chords in a variety of genres. Their repertoire features songs from Broadway musicals, Fleetwood Mac, Ella Fitzgerald, Michael Buble, and more!
Marianna started singing Barbershop when she was 12. At age 14 she won her first contest singing lead in a pick-up quartet at one of the Sons of the Severn Annual Barbershop picnics. The prize ….a 51 lb. watermelon! She was hooked…. Though life and all its interesting adventures diverted her attention for a bit, but she was back in the Barbershop arena for good in 1981. Singing in the Harbor City Music Company Show Chorus has had an incredible impact on her life and singing under the direction of her husband, Michael Gellert is just the icing on the cake. She has sung in several competing quartets both lead and baritone, Sizzle and Sass, Madison Avenue, Vogue , and over the years several non-competing combinations …each has brought great experiences, personal growth and fabulous, lasting friendships.
Marianna resides in Severna Park, MD. Her days are filled with family commitments, fabulous grandchildren, work, chorus and now once again quarteting. Marianna feels that Sweet Adelines has a way of safely allowing one to find their gifts and grow on so many levels. She has grabbed that opportunity and tapped into the creative side of that crazy brain of hers. She is a very hands on member of HCMC, heading up the make-up team, dabbling.. ..(though some may call it “badgering”) in the costume committee, but takes a special interest in being on the creative team which brainstorms and brings to reality fabulous show packages for international competitions, annual shows and SO much more.
Feeling lucky and blessed in so many areas of her life, Marianna looks forward to yet another new adventure of singing with NEON LIGHTS.
Ashley Conway – Bass
Ashley has been singing barbershop for 12 years. She is a member of the Harbor City Music Company Show Chorus, where she is a part of the Music Team and Captain of the Physical Warm-Up Team. Ashley has sung in various regional medaling quartets: Whole Lotta’ Harmony & Mixology.
Ashley resides in Baltimore County where she attended Morgan State University and traveled the world with the Morgan State Choir. Ashley has a huge background in musical theatre and classical training.
In Maryland, you might have seen her perform in various musicals with lead/supporting roles at Toby’s Dinner Theatre. Another fun fact, in 2011 Ashley won the Best Baltimore’s Idol Contest. She won singing Carrie Underwood’s “Cowboy Casanova” and Tina Turner’s “Proud Mary”.
During the day, Ashley works in the Finance Department at Maxim Healthcare Services and at night, enjoys spending time with her husband & daughter. In her spare time, she enjoys coaching youth quartets, performing in musicals, judging singing contests and cooking/baking.
Ashley is enjoying this her new musical journey with Neon Lights.
Amanda Miller – Lead
Amanda joined Sweet Adelines in 2001, singing as baritone in the “Earth Angels Quartet” and the lead of “Chix of Harmony”. She competed with Chix of Harmony for 2 years, during the time it was called IES. She returned to SAI singing tenor, and joined the “Dundalk Sweet Adeline’s Star Spangled Chorus” and “Whole ‘Lotta Harmony”. Amanda competed in Region 19 with “Whole ‘Lotta Harmony” who placed 2nd and became the region’s Wild Card Quartet. They became 16th in the Sweet Adeline’s International Competition in Houston, Texas in 2011, and became Region 19’s Champion Quartet in 2012.
After taking a hiatus to get married to establish her home and career, Amanda is excited to be back in Sweet Adeline’s singing lead with her best friend Ashley Conway, in their third quartet together “Neon Lights” as well as “Harbor City Music Company Show Chorus”! Amanda loves singing barbershop; it is one of her very favorite things to do because this art form brings so much comradery and fun. Amanda also enjoys Sweet Adeline’s commitment to advancing the musical art form of barbershop harmony through education, competition and performance.
Amanda graduated from Towson University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology in 2008, and her Master of Arts in Teaching in 2010. During the day, Amanda is a fourth grade math and science educator for Anne Arundel County Public Schools. Amanda also sings with Trinity Church as part of their worship band Risk Revival. Amanda enjoys spending time with her husband Scott, and their wonderful family and friends, reading the bible, studying math and science concepts, traveling, hiking and exploring the outdoors. Amanda and Scott reside in Essex, MD with their two kitty cats Pumpkin and Smokey.
Lainey only joined SAI in June of 2014, but she has been singing in some capacity or another for her entire life. She is a classically trained soprano and her background includes 19 years singing in countless choral, ensemble, and soloist settings with experiences focused in opera and musical theater.
Lainey took a brief break from singing after attending Towson University to get her career off and running, but after three years realized there was something missing in her life – music! Barbershop has been a wonderful fit for this passionate and competitive singer, and she was ready to jump in with both feet when she was introduced to the wonderful world of barbershop. Now she’s back at it with her first quartet, Neon Lights, and Harbor City Music Company Show Chorus, and she’s loving every minute of it.
During the day, Lainey is known as “Elaine” and is the marketing manager for a non-profit. She loves relaxing at home in Arnold, MD with her golden retriever, and in her spare moments she enjoys reading, binge-watching Netflix, and spending time with her wonderful friends and family.