SCVA Newsletter (on-line version) May 2003


Show Choir Spectacular Erin Terreri, Vice-President, Show Choir

Show Choir Spectacular is just around the corner!  29 choirs will compete in this exciting event on Saturday, May 3 at Long Beach Poly High School.  Even if you do not have a choir competing, come check it out!  You will be impressed!  (Remember, we are not doing pre-sale tickets this year. All chaperones and non-performers must purchase tickets in order to be admitted into the auditorium.  Tickets are $5.00.)


Adjudicators for the Show Choir Spectacular are Gerald Eskelin, Tom Kessler, and John Wilson.  Please enjoy reading their bio's provided below:


Gerald Eskeline's musical career is multi-faceted, spanning five decades of conducting, singing, composing, writing, and teaching. He is the founder and director of both L.A. Jazz Choir and the Gerald Eskelin Singers and has been nominated for two Grammy Awards for his work with those groups. Dr. Eskelin has taught music at the University of Southern California and the California Institute of the Arts and is currently on the music staff at Los Angeles Pierce College. He has conducted both choral and instrumental ensembles and is equally at home in both classical and popular musical genres. Dr. Eskelin is a noted author who wrote Lies My Music Teacher Taught Me. His current literary effort is a book on The Components Of Vocal Blend, in which he shares his unique concepts for creating the sounds that earned him an international reputation for choral excellence.


Tom Kessler has a wealth of knowledge and experience in both instrumental and choral music education. He has served as the director of the San Gabriel Valley Symphony and as an adjudicator with SCVA and SCSBOA. For many years he headed the award-winning choral program at West Covina High School, earning a reputation for musical excellence as well as numerous state and national awards.   Show choirs under his direction were well known for their innovation and expertise in the field of choreography, while always maintaining musical integrity. Since retiring from teaching, Mr. Kessler has been in great demand as an adjudicator and clinician at choral festivals and competitions throughout California.


John Wilson, singer, director, and arranger, received his music education as a  in Minnesota.  As a graduate student, he was a member of the famed University of Minnesota Chamber Singers. While serving as choral director at Azusa High School, he created and produced the longest running Pop Choral Festival, the Aztec Sing. He was also the National Coordinator and adjudicator for Johnny Mann's Great American Choral Festival. John has been a studio singer for records, motion pictures, television, and commercials for many years, and his choral arrangements have been performed by award winning groups in the United States and Europe. Mr. Wilson has been active as Minister of Music and soloist for various churches and for thirty-five years was a choral director in California public schools.


I'm really looking forward to this event.  This is a great opportunity for my students and I to see and hear all of the great work going on this year.  See you soon!


Junior High/Middle School Honor Choir Jeffe Huls, Vice-President, Jr. High/Middle School Honor Choir

Join us for the Junior High/Middle School Honor Choir Concert on Sunday afternoon, May 4.


Peter Rutenberg, director of the Los Angeles Chamber Singers, conducts this year's Honor Choir in what is sure to be a wonderful afternoon of music.  Darin Goulet joins us as accompanist.  I'm thrilled that our students have the chance to work with these talented professionals.


Also appearing on the program, will be the finalists of the SCVA Solo Vocal Competition.  Help us to congratulate these young singers as their awards are announced at the concert.


The concert begins at 3 p.m. at Lincoln Middle School.  (1501 California Ave. Santa Monica)  Tickets are $5 each and can be purchased at the door.


Thank you to everyone who graciously served as site hosts and adjudicators.  Your efforts are greatly appreciated!


High School Honor Choir News Randi Carp, Vice-President, High School Honor Choir

It's never too early for Regional Honor Choir information!  Actually, I don't have a lot of specifics to give you - just some forewarnings.


A special Honor Choir newsletter will be mailed to all SCVA members in June.  Be sure that . . .

   your membership is current

   SCVA has your accurate mailing address

   you read it carefully making note of all deadlines, guidelines and rules

   you get materials prepared for the start of school since the postmark deadline for audition applications comes within the first few weeks


Audition Dates

Saturday, October 4 and Saturday, October 11.  (Because of the Rosh Hashanah holiday, the last weekend in September, traditionally an audition weekend, will not be available.)


Audition Sites

If you are interested in hosting an audition site, let me know right away so I can put an audition schedule in the June newsletter.   Hosting a site is not a huge amount of work and gives your students a very convenient place to audition.  SCVA strives to have sites spread equally throughout the region.  The more people who volunteer, the more equitable the geographical locations can be.  It would be nice if some of the sites offered afternoon audition times so that students get the maximum number of options available to them.



Although it's a little early to schedule adjudicators (especially since we have no audition sites yet), if you are interested, let me know and I'll keep you on a "reserve list".  If you don't notify me now, don't worry  you'll be receiving plenty of harassing e-mails in the months to come.


Feel free to send any suggestions you might have about how to improve SCVA Regional Honor Choir this year.  Be sure your idea is feasible and constructive.  Complaints don't help, ideas do.   One improvement we will be making is to ask all site hosts to keep a list of auditionees' names and scores before mailing back the score sheets.  That way, if any packet is lost in the mail we can still proceed in a timely manner.


I have not contracted conductors yet for the 2003 event.  If you have suggestions, let me know.  Please contact me using my email address on the front page of the newsletter.  I'm looking forward to another exciting Honor Choir next year.


Festival News Mark Henson, President

I hope that everyone is enjoying a busy and successful festival season.  Many thanks to all of our members who hosted festivals and also to those serving as adjudicators.  The festival experience continues to be one of our most valuable teaching tools.


You're probably not thinking about next year's festival experiences just yet, but  my guess is that many of you are already planning your calendars for the coming school year.   If you plan to host an SCVA choral festival next year and have calendared the date with your school or church, please fill out the Festival Host Application.


It is my hope that we can move toward announcing our SCVA festival calendar prior to the start of the school year. Currently we schedule our dates during the winter and then go through the "February crunch" of filling and staffing all of the events.    Let's see if we can start the 2003-2004 school year with our festivals already in place!


Any questions?  Call me!


2004 Show Choir Competition Dates


January 16        Bonita Vista Fantasy Festival

January 23        Azusa Aztec Sing

February 6       Brea Olinda Festival 2004

February 13     Tournament of Champions

February 20     Diamond Bar Spectacular

March 13         Hart Encore

March 19         Arcadia Big Pow Wow

March 20         Brea Olinda Ladies First

March 26         Burroughs Music Showcase

March 27         Bonita Vista For Ladies Only

April 17            Carlsbad

April 23-24      Chula Vista Invitational


Other Important Information
SCVA Membership Application
Festival Host Application Form