Pacific Choral Ensembles
Choral music at the University of the Pacific has a long and distinguished tradition with the first a cappella choir in the West established here in 1916. This season marks the 61st tour of a Pacific choir, an unparalleled achievement in the West.
The Pacific Choral Ensembles are a rich and vital component of Conservatory and University life. They function as a laboratory for the fundamentals of choral singing and provide an opportunity to learn a myriad of styles and genres. While vocal majors perform in choral ensembles each semester, all music majors sing in an ensemble for at least two semesters. This experience allows students to develop their vocal instrument, refine their intonation, and learn a love of singing.
Representative repertoire includes the Italian Baroque oratorio Jephte by Carissimi, the Symphony No. 9 by Beethoven (performed with the University Symphony Orchestra), Sergei Prokofiev's Alexander Nevsky (performed with the Stockton Symphony), Dave Brubeck's The Gates of Justice (performed with the Dave Brubeck Quartet), and a variety of classic spirituals, gospel songs, and jazz.
Performance venues include the Faye Spanos Concert Hall, the beautiful and intimate Morris Chapel, the magnificent Cathedral of the Annunciation, and the contemporary Atherton Auditorium on the campus of San Joaquin Delta College (with the Stockton Symphony).
The Pacific Singers, a mixed chorus, is the top choir and is the touring choral ensemble. It combines with the University Chorus and Oriana Choir for two concerts each semester and performs annually with the University Symphony Orchestra or the Stockton Symphony in the performance of major choral and orchestral works.
The University Chorus is a large mixed chorus open to any student in the University by audition. It combines with the other choirs for at least two performances each semester and occasionally performs in works for choir and orchestra.
The Oriana Choir is our women's ensemble. It performs independently, with the other choirs and with the orchestral ensembles.
Membership in the choral ensembles is open by audition to any University of the Pacific student. Auditions are held at the beginning of each semester.
Edward Cetto has been Director of Choral Music in the Conservatory since 1994. He holds degrees from the Hartt School of Music, Boston Conservatory of Music, and University of Iowa. He has prepared choruses for Dave Brubeck, Michael Tilson-Thomas, Peter Jaffe, and the Leningrad (St. Petersburg) Symphony Orchestra (Russia). Dr. Cetto conducts the Pacific Singers, University Chorus, and Oriana, and teaches conducting and solfeggio. He has also been the conductor of the Stockton Chorale.