Composing for vocal ensembles is an extension of Szymko's creativity as a choral director. She has inspired community and church choirs in Seattle and Portland for over 30 years. Her passion for the singing voice, her ability to embody sound, her dedication to craft and artistry, and her insistence on quality texts—all relate to her experience as a conductor and are reflected in her choral compositions.
Szymko lives and works in the Portland, Oregon. She is entering her 20th season as the Artistic Director of Aurora Chorus and has recently joined the Music faculty at Portland State University as director of Vox Femina women's chorus. She has been a resident composer with Do Jump! Movement Theater since 1995.