Leeav Sofer Profiled in the LA Times

Alumnus Leeav Sofer, co-director of Colburn Wesley Project singers was profiled in the LA Times. The choir is comprised of homeless men and women living on skid row.

Leeav and Linda Evans have been working with the choir through the Colburn School, “There’s something there that no other choir has, which is the fact they want it so much more,” Leeav said of the choir. The choir gave its first performance at the City Club on the 51st floor of a downtown skyscraper wearing black evening-wear donated by a film financier.

Photo credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times


Chris Rountree Receives a Rave Review

Alumnus Chris Rountree received a rave review of his new music ensemble, WildUp’s performance a the Music Academy (Montecito) in the LA Times.

Mark Swed wrote, “All the performances, led by Rountree, were exceptional, the ensemble turning on an astonishing stylistic dime. This group really has come a long way — technically, intellectually, emotionally and technologically. I worry about the future of Southern California citrus in a future of climate change, but on Saturday night, the future of classical music — of all music — seemed in the right new hands.”

Nathan Stark Garners Rave Review

Alumnus Nathan Stark continues to garner exceptional press from his role “The Italian Girl in Algiers” with the Opera San Jose: “Nathan Stark played Mustafa and he gave one of the best comic performances I have ever seen. His facial elasticity would give Jim Carrey a run for his money. He spent the majority of the performance with a perfect comedic leer on his face and I kept remembering the old saying of “don’t make that face, it just might freeze that way.” He went all out for his character and you could tell he was having a blast.”

Photo Credit: Bob Shomler


Darren Loney’s Gahr HS Band Wins State Championship

Alumnus Darren Loney led his Gahr High School Band to the Division 4 State Championship  After advancing to the California State Grand Championships they took home the Grand Champion Trophy, Gold Medal. Gahr senior flutist Sayra Rosales received the Outstanding Soloist Award. Over half the band – 53 students – were freshmen or first-year members of the group. This is only the second year since Gahr High School has restarted its competitive marching program.

Kimberly Shankar and Courtney Crowe at Sweet Adelines International Competition

Alumni Kimberly Shankar and Courtney Crowe competed in the Sweet Adelines International Competition in Baltimore last weekend. Sweet Adelines is a worldwide organization of women singers committed to advancing the musical art form of barbershop harmony through education, competition and performance. Kimberly sang with the Harborlites who made into the finals.

Meredith Kennedy Reaching Young People at Risk

Alumna Meredith Kennedy (MM Voice) is bringing music and film together in a documentary short about musicians in Belize using African drumming to reach young people at risk, as gang violence threatens to take over their communities. The impetus for the project was a 2008 trip to Belize and Meredith worked with an African drumming group to create a fund-raising concert for an environmental education program. She has an indiegogo campaign to raise funds for the film: