PST Best in Nation Three-peat

The BCCM Jazz Program has been awarded three prestigious Downbeat Magazine Awards.

Pacific Standard Time took Large Vocal Jazz Ensemble for the third year in a row.

Miko Shudo was awarded Outstanding Performance for Undergraduate Vocal Jazz Soloist. Brendan Doshi was awarded Outstanding Graduate Original Composition – Lead Sheet for his piece, “Vulture.”

Congratulations to Jeff Jarvis, Christine Guter, Miko, Brendan, and the entire Jazz Program. These are the most significant awards in collegiate jazz. It is a huge honor and a reflection of the depth of our jazz area that we have won three this year.

Valerio Morucci Wins Ingolf Dahl Memorial Prize in Musicology

Alumnus Valerio Morucci (Musicology MA 2011) won the prestigious Ingolf Dahl competition for the outstanding paper by a graduate student at the joint meeting of the Pacific Southwest and Northern California American Musicological Society this weekend at UCLA.

Valerio’s paper entitled, “Secular Patronage at the Orsini Court: Music, Poetry, and the Rhetoric of Early Monody,” presented groundbreaking evidence that will change our understanding of the evolution of opera in the late 15th century. He is currently a PhD student at UC Davis.

Students Record at Capitol Records

Christine Guter directed a group of our vocalists for a recording session at the famed Studio A at the iconic Capitol Records Building just north of Hollywood and Vine last weekend. They recorded the closing credits for a film scored by Christopher Caliendo.


Studio A was inaugurated by Frank Sinatra in 1956. Among others to have recorded there are Judy Garland, the Beach Boys and the Beatles.

Alumnus Ryan Brown Inaugural Recipient of the Hoefer Prize

Alumnus Ryan Brown is the inaugural recipient of the Hoefer Prize, named for former San Francisco Conservatory of Music Trustee Jacqueline Stanhope Hoefer. The prize is a commission to write a new work for the BluePrint New Music Ensemble. The award also covers a week-long residency of rehearsals, seminars, and master classes in preparation for the work’s premiere performance next spring. At that time the work will also be recorded.

Craig Richey on KBeach

Craig Richey was interviewed on the “Live With Keya and Dave” show on KBeach Radio (which is the University Radio station) last week. He spoke about the Cheney Documentary, his work as a film composer, and life at Cole Conservatory.

Silvia Carluccio wins the 2013 “Outstanding Thesis”

Silvia Carluccio (Musicology) has been awarded the 2013  ”Outstanding Thesis” award for the College of the Arts.  Her paper, “Fitter Happier”: The Psychological Effects of Fame on The Creative Process,” was an examination of the effect of fame on the music of Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Radiohead.  The award will be conferred at commencement.

David Ortega Sound Designer and Psychologist

Alumnus David Ortega (MM Composition 1995) completed his Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2004. David is a critically acclaimed composer and sound designer with 17 years of experience in the video game industry. David’s music and sound can be heard on over 100 million sold products ranging from video games, television, mobile devices, and toys. David most recently composed the theme song and all in-game music for Disney’s #1 app store games “Where’s My Water” and “Where’s My Perry” for iOS and Android.

He also recently co-authored a paper with Dr. David Pincus, Associate Professor of Psychology at Chapman University, entitled “Orbital decomposition for the comparison of multiple categorical time-series.” in Stephen J. Guastello and Robert Gregson (Eds.), “Nonlinear Dynamical Systems Analysis for the Behavioral Sciences: Real Data.” Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press/Taylor and Francis.

PST Headlines for the Oceanside Jazz Festival

Pacific Standard Time, directed by Christine Guter, was the headliner act for the Oceanside Jazz Festival last weekend at Mira Costa College. The festival has always engaged a professional ensemble to be the headliner, but this year PST was asked by the director of the festival to have the prime spot.

Noted jazz educator, Kelly Kunz, wrote, “I was sitting here today thinking again about your concert last night.  It was with no doubt, the best vocal jazz choir I’ve ever heard.  Great charts, strong rhythm section, great ensemble singing, really good sound, intonation and balance, tight, energetic and entertaining, the whole 9 yards.  I’m not one to gush or heap praise all that much, but I’m left without too many other words.  Your work, your group and those kids were so inspiring and have clearly become the model that others should be looking to.  It was joyous for me to witness such a high level of musical and personal integrity.”

Chris Wabich Busy Weekend in Montana and Fresno

This past weekend, alumnus Chris Wabich was guest artist with the university of Montana percussion ensemble and steel band playing the music of the band “gong” and premiering his own panorama tune “Tarzan and Jane.” He also presented a clinic with Brad Dutz at the CA day of percussion in Fresno.

A video clip of their performance at the Day of Percussion is here.

David Garrett in Recital

On April 11, Faculty cellist David Garrett performed a recital of unaccompanied works at the Laguna Art Museum on the Laguna Beach Live Series. Garrett also played works for cello and piano by Beethoven and Rachmaninoff in Glendale for the Second Saturday series.

Nathan Stark Interview in The MadOpera Blog

Nathan Stark wil be performing the role of Il Commendatore in Don Giovanni at Madison Opera. MadOpera interviewed him, asking him 10 questions. Some of the highlights are below.

3. A live music performance I’ve attended that I will never forget is:
It has to be the first professional opera I ever saw - La Traviata at LA Opera. I was spellbound afterward. I knew I wanted to have a career in opera after that experience.

7. If you could perform with any singer, retired or deceased, who would it be? 
For opera, it would be Marilyn Horne. She’s been my friend & mentor for several years and I just adore her. Outside of that, I would love to perform with (don’t laugh) Dolly Parton. She’s always been one of my favorite performers, knows how to connect with her fans & audiences, and keeps reinventing herself after all these years… and not just with plastic surgery!
8. If you weren’t a singer, what profession would you be in? 
A school teacher. Young minds are a beautiful thing and I’ve always thought being a teacher was such a noble profession. Teachers are heroes.