The Metropolitan Master Chorale is proud to collaborate with many talented musicians,composers, and other music professionals.
Claudio Alcantar, saxophone
Claudio Alcantar began playing saxophone at the age of twelve, and has enjoyed considerable recognition ever since. After graduating from the Belmont High School Performing Arts Academy (where he served as Drum Major, lead alto sax for the Jazz Ensemble received the Sheldon Mehr Music Scholarship, and performed with the Colburn’s school Concert Band and Wind Ensemble) he studied classical sax and jazz improvization at Pasadena City College, where he also won numerous competitions. Mr. Alcantar is currently a student at CSU Northridge as a Saxophone Performance and Music Education Major and is the proud recipient of the Ted Gould Memorial Scholarship, and the Arts Council Scholarship. Mr. Alcantar has accompanied the Chorale on both saxophone and clarinet.
Lynn Angebranndt, cello
Lynn Angebranndt received her BA in Music in applied cello from The Catholic University, Washington D.C., and her MA in Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts. She is a core member of Ensemble Green, an ensemble devoted to contemporary chamber music. Ms. Angebranndt maintains a private teaching studio, teaches part time at Valley College, is a board member and the newsletter editor of the Los Angeles Cello Society, and freelances throughout Southern California.
Born and raised in the Midwest, Dr. Bailey has had a varied career in music. Originally trained as an organist with degrees in both philosophy and theology, Dr. Bailey has been engaged in music-making as a church musician, college professor, professional conductor and composer. He has degrees in music from the University of California at Berkeley (MA), and Stanford University (DMA). In his academic life, Dr. Bailey was Dean of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Director of the Yale University Institute of Sacred Music, and Chair of the Department of Music at Pomona College in Claremont, California. In each of these institutions, in addition to his administrative duties, he formed and conducted choruses including The San Francisco Cantata Singers, the Yale Concert Choir, the New Haven Chorale and the Pomona College Choir. He has been the recipient of two Fulbright grants for study in Germany where he edited choral music by Georg Philipp Telemann. At Pomona College he was twice awarded the Wig Award for Distinguished Teaching.
As Artistic Director of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles (GMCLA) from 1989 until his retirement in 2001, Dr. Bailey led the 160-voice chorus to international prominence through concerts, recordings and tours, most notably to Eastern Europe and Russia. Since his retirement, he teaches half-time at Pomona College, and has devoted increasing amounts of time to composition. He has written commissioned works for GMCLA, the Seattle Men’s Chorus, Boston Gay Men’s Chorus and the European Choral Festival. His music has been performed at Myerson Symphony Hall in Dallas, Carnegie Hall, Seattle’s Benaroya Hall and Boston Symphony Hall. Most recently he was commissioned by the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles to write a work for double choruses of men and women entitled “Kindred Spirits.”
The Metropolitan Master Chorale premiered Mr. Bailey’s composition “Rhapsody Kadosh” in September 2009 for Congregation Kol Ami at its Rosh Hashanah services and at the Chorale’s December concert, “Angels and Saints.”
Gabriel De Sant’anna, percussion
Gabriel De Sant’anna is a native of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He has been playing percussion since his years at the Van Nuys High School Performing Arts program and completed the Applied Music Program and Los Angeles Valley College. He is a frequent performer with the Metropolitan Master Chorale. His versatile talent is a perfect match for the Chorale’s diverse repertoire.
Glendale Philharmonic Orchestra
The Metropolitan Master Chorale collaborated with the Glendale Philharmonic Orchestra in its March 2010 concert, “Welcome to all the pleasures.” Music Director and Principal Conductor Mikael Avetisyan and members of the 20 member orchestra performed “Concerto Grosso Palladio” for string orchestra by Karl Jenkins, and accompanied the Chorale on several pieces, including “Five Hebrew Love Songs” by Eric Whitacre, “Welcome to all the Pleaures” by Henry Purcell, “The Frim Fram Sauce” by Joe Ricardel and Redd Evans, and “Inscription of Hope” by Z. Randall Stroope. Visit their website for more information about the Glendale Philharmonic
Ann Louise Christensen and Geno Escarrega, through Christensen Music, offer studio recording, tracking, mixing and mastering as well as on-location recording for concerts. Mr. Escarrega has been a producer, director and editor in music, film and TV production for more than 30 years. He worked at Warner Brothers for more than 20 years and helped direct the TV series China Beach. Ms. Christensen is an international performing artist, songwriter and music teacher. Christensen Music is currently building a successful recording relationship with members of the Los Angeles Opera.
Eileen Holt is a versatile musician. In addition to her current orchestral career, she has also been an opera singer. She plays with many orchestras including the Riverside County Philharmonic, the Long Beach Symphony and the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, to name a few. Ms. Holt is on the faculty of the University of California, Riverside, the University of La Verne and the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts.
Yih Mei Hu, piano
Pianist Yih-Mei Hu is presently on the faculty of Los Angeles Valley College. Her international appearances include performances in Austria, the Czech Republic, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, the United States, and Canada. At the age of 18, Dr. Hu made her orchestral debut at Meany Hall with the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra. She has subsequently performed with the Hunan Changsha Symphony Orchestra, the Surabaya Symphony, the New Eastman Symphony, and the University of Victoria Orchestra. In 2001, Dr. Hu was featured on national radio in the People’s Republic of China, as the premiere artist in the opening Gala concerts of the Tian Han Grand Theatre.
Chris Rolontz, double bass
Chris Rolontz is currently a performance major at USC. In addition to his regular work with the Metropolitan Master Chorale, he performs frequently with local bands and ensembles, many of which can be seen online on YouTube.
Mark Saltzman’s devotion to music began with his love of singing in the form of a dual career as an operatic tenor and a cantor. He has been privileged to serve as the cantor of Congregation Kol Ami in West Hollywood for the last thirteen years, and is proud to have created and produced the Kol Hashamayim (Voices of Heaven) music series for the last seven years, presenting eclectic, educational and provocative musical and theatrical explorations. Mr. Saltzman has performed with the Pacific Symphony, Hawaii Symphony and most recently on the Sundays Live music series at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Mr. Saltzman has sung leading operatic tenor roles with many companies, including the Arizona Opera, Opera Pacific, Glimmerglass Opera, Long Beach Opera and the European Opera Center. His talents also extend to writing, directing, and producing for a variety of organizations including the Opera Workshop at UCLA, the Education and Community Programs division of the Los Angeles Opera, Opera Pacific, and the American Conference of Cantors. He is a published composer of Jewish liturgical music with Transcontinental Music Publications. Mr. Saltzman also heads the entertainment division of Silver Birches
where he is a partner of the nationally acclaimed event design and production company based in Pasadena.
Cantor Saltzman performed the solo in the Metropolitan Master Chorale’s premiere of Jon Bailey’s composition “Rhapsody Kadosh” at Congregation Kol Ami’s 2009 Rosh Hashanah services.
The Metropolitan Master Chorale is delighted to showcase mezzo-soprano Patricia Schuman in our June 20th concert and and our July 11, 2010 Songs on a Summer Breeze fundraising event.
Miss Schuman is a mezzo-soprano and leading soprano specializing in the Mozart repertoire. She has performed on the stages of many of the world’s leading opera houses, including the Metropolitan Opera, Teatro all Scala, Vienna State Opera, and The Royal Opera House at Covent Garden. She has also sung Vitellia, Countess Almaviva, Ilia, and Donna Elvira at various festivals including the Salzburg Festival, the Glyndebourne Festival, and Aix-en-Provence. Miss Schuman has concertized with orchestras such as the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Orchestre de Paris and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. She can be heard on a recording in Handel’s Messiah (Koch), Florencia en el Amazonas, Tancredi, and Bertoni’s Veni Creator (Erato). She can be seen on DVD in the title role of L’incoronazione di Poppea by Monteverdi.
Last season, Miss Schuman joined harpist Megan Sesma for a series of recitals at Yale University, Wesleyan University, University of Connecticut, and other recital series in the New England area. This season, in addition to concert performances with Capella Cantorum and Con Brio, she is performing in recitals with husband David Pittsinger at the George Flynn Classical Concerts, the Essex Winter Series, and the Katherine Hepburn Theater.