Bob Cole Conservatory of Music

Choral, Vocal, & Opera Studies

A Letter From The Area Director

Welcome to the Choral, Vocal, and Opera area of the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music. Almost daily, I receive emails and phone calls from prospective students and their parents asking me, "Why should I come to the Bob Cole Conservatory? What makes the voice program special, and what do you consider to be your strengths?" These are some of my favorite questions, because I believe we are not only the best value in collegiate music education in California, but our alumni have consistently shown that a Bob Cole education allows them to do exactly what they wanted to do when they started school—follow their dreams as performers, teachers and scholars.

"The faculty and I are passionate about our program. We believe in the transformative power of music in people’s lives and we work to share that with our students, our audiences and our community every day."

Dress rehearsal for the Mozart Requiem
Dress rehearsal for the Mozart Requiem.

As a student at CSULB’s Bob Cole Conservatory, you will receive weekly voice lessons with some of the finest studio voice faculty in the country. You will be immersed in five centuries of repertoire and you will be nurtured by teachers who care—really care—for their students. You will be held to the highest standard in practice and in performance, and you will gain the needed skills to become a professional. The ensembles you’ll sing in are some of the most celebrated in the nation, with appearances at national conferences, yearly touring opportunities, and collaborations with living composers like Richard Burchard, Jake Runestad and Eric Whitacre. Our fully staged, orchestrally accompanied operas are selected to highlight the talent we have in-house; we do not use ringers or faculty in our productions.

Alumnus Tyler Alessi with composer Ricky Ian Gordon at Opera Fusion Cincinnati
Alumnus Tyler Alessi with composer Ricky Ian Gordon at Opera Fusion Cincinnati.

Alums of our program make a living in music. They perform on TV, on the nation’s great operatic stages (including the MET, San Francisco, LA, and Cincinnati), in Broadway touring companies, with major bands, in combos, on cruise ships, and in the recording industry. They sing with the Los Angeles Master Chorale, The Santa Fe Desert Chorale, The Pacific Chorale, The San Francisco Symphony Orchestra Chorus and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Chorus. Music education majors who elected to have voice as their principal instrument are teaching at every level. They are elementary school teachers and Directors of Choral Activities at great schools of music. They are private voice teachers and church choir directors. They are living their musical dream and sharing the joy of performance and singing with the next generation.

The faculty and I are passionate about our program. We believe in the transformative power of music in people’s lives and we work to share that with our students, our audiences and our community every day.

I encourage you to come and visit. Plan a day; participate in rehearsals, observe lessons and sit in on classes. See for yourself what makes the Bob Cole Conservatory such a special place to sing.


Jonathan Talberg, DMA
Area Director, Choral, Vocal, & Opera Studies
Bob Cole Conservatory of Music

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Bachelor of Music, Option in Performance—Concentration in Voice

The Bachelor of Music, Option in Performance-Concentration in Voice is a pre-professional program aligned with NASM standards that gives students the necessary tools for a professional career as a singer. The Bob Cole Conservatory Choral, Vocal and Opera Program, one of the largest undergraduate voice departments in the state of California, supports seven ensembles, the CSULB Opera Institute, weekly master-classes, international tours, and significant scholarship to all voice majors. Our students take the required core in music theory, history, piano proficiency, and applied lessons; our ensembles, opera and musical theater productions, vocal jazz groups, and repertoire courses prepare our young artists for a life in music.

Bachelor of Music, Option in Performance—Concentration in Opera

The purpose of the program is to prepare students for admission into the nation’s most prestigious graduate opera programs and to work in professional opera companies. We aim to provide training in the musical, linguistic and theatrical aspects that will make our students successful in this highly specialized and competitive profession. Our training is accomplished both in the classroom and in public performance.

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Side Menu

Voice Faculty

All Faculty/Staff

Choral Events

All Events

Alumni Recital **Cancelled

Nathan Stark, voice

Praised by the Washington Post as having a voice of "unearthly power," Nathan Stark from Hughson, California has performed on operatic, concert and recital stages throughout the United States, Europe and China.

His 2014-15 season currently includes Mustafa in L’italiana in Algeri with Opera San José, Monterone in Rigoletto with Atlanta Opera, Sparafucile in Rigoletto in a return to Opera in the Heights, bass soloist in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 and Choral Fantasy with Canton Symphony Orchestra, and singing in recital at El Camino College…

  • Saturday, March 14, 2015
  • 8:00pm
  • Daniel Recital Hall
  • Tickets $10/7

Men’s, Women’s, and ’49er Choruses

Brian Dokko, Regan MacNay, and Jonathan Talberg, conductors

Celebrate the beginning of Spring with a wonderful concert by our ’town and gown’ ensembles. Made up of students, faculty and alumni from throughout the University, our Men’s, Women’s and ’49er Choruses celebrate the beauty of community and joy of singing in this special St. Patrick’s Day Concert.

  • Tuesday, March 17, 2015
  • 8:00pm
  • Daniel Recital Hall
  • Tickets $10/7

The Bob Cole Chamber Choir and CSULB University Choir present: Legacy

Olga Spriggs and Jonathan Talberg, conductors

This special concert features selections chosen by alumni of the Choral Studies program from the last 65 years. Beloved repertoire includes Johannes Brahms Schaffe in Mir Gott ein Rein Herz, Eric Whitacre’s Leonardo Dreams of His Flying Machine, Norman Dinnerstein’s The Frogs and other pieces by Frank Pooler, Johann Sebastian Bach, Graeme Langager and H.A. Schimmerling. This concert will sell out; please buy your tickets early!

  • Saturday, March 21, 2015
  • 8:00pm
  • Daniel Recital Hall
  • Tickets $10/7

Donizetti’s Elixir of Love

Johannes Müller-Stosch, conductor, Andrew Chown, director

  • Friday, April 10, 2015 @ 8:00pm
    Saturday, April 11, 2015 @ 2:00pm/8:00pm
    Sunday, April 12, 2015 @ 2:00pm
  • University Theatre
  • Tickets $25/15 (Students Only) April 10 @ 8:00pm / April 11 2:00pm + 8:00pm / April 12 @ 2:00pm

Pacific Standard Time and Jazz & Tonic

Christine Guter, director

  • Saturday, April 25, 2015
  • 4pm/8pm
  • Daniel Recital Hall
  • Tickets $10/7 4:00pm / 8:00pm

Women’s and Men’s Choruses

Jonathan Talberg and Regan MacNay, conductors

  • Bob Cole Conservatory of Music
  • California State University, Long Beach
  • 1250 Bellflower Blvd.
  • Long Beach, CA 90840-7101
  • 562-985-4781 phone
  • 562-985-2490 fax

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