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Pacific Appoints New Dean of Conservatory of Music

Feb 25, 2009

Giulio OngaroUniversity of the Pacific has hired a new dean of the Conservatory of Music, the oldest college of music west of the Mississippi. Giulio Maria Ongaro, associate dean for faculty affairs and a professor of musicology at the Flora L. Thornton School of Music, University of Southern California, will take the reins of Pacific's Conservatory of Music in July.

"I am so pleased to have such a distinguished educator and academic leader as Giulio Ongaro join the University's leadership team," said Pacific President Don DeRosa. "His fresh ideas, combined with experience in several highly respected academic programs, will help us keep the Conservatory at the forefront of distinctive undergraduate and graduate music education."

"I am excited to be named to head Pacific's Conservatory of Music, one of the most respected schools of music in the nation with some of the nation's leading alumni, such as jazz master Dave Brubeck," Ongaro said. "I look forward to working with faculty and students to help the Conservatory continue to be a leading voice in music."

As dean of Pacific's Conservatory of Music, he will oversee about 180 students in 12 degree programs, including two master's programs, that range from classical music studies and an opera program to robust jazz and music management programs. The Conservatory holds more than 120 live concerts each year, from student presentations to professional guest artists. He will also oversee the Brubeck Institute, a signature program that builds upon Pacific alumnus Dave Brubeck's lifelong dedication to music, creativity, education, and the advancement of important social issues. The institute operates the Brubeck Festival, Brubeck Outreach Program, Brubeck Fellowship Program, the Summer Jazz Colony and builds programs in collaboration with the University Library's Brubeck Collection. The Brubeck Institute also offers about 35 performances and school outreach programs around the country each year.

Ongaro, a native of Venice, Italy, has a bachelor's degree in flute performance from University of Iowa and master's and doctoral degrees in musicology from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has held teaching positions at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Delaware and USC. He was the first director of faculty affairs at the Thornton School at USC from 2000 to 2004 when he was promoted to associate dean for faculty affairs. He serves on a wide variety of university committees at USC and also is a professor of musicology. For the past year, he has served as the faculty master at USC's Parkside International Residential College.

"The role of dean is a complex job that requires diplomatic, organizational and academic skills," said Phil Gilbertson, Pacific's provost. "Ongaro will bring all of those abilities to Pacific along with a vision and great leadership skills that will keep the Conservatory as one of the leading performing arts institutions in the West."

Current conservatory dean Bill Hipp has been serving as the interim dean since 2007, after previous dean Stephen Anderson was named the full-time director of the Brubeck Institute.