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Press Release

Cal Poly Choirs to Present ‘Traditions’ Concert on March 17

Cal Poly full choir crowds the stage during a performance

Contact: Michele Abba

805-756-2406; [email protected]

100 Cal Poly alumni will be featured in the celebration of choral music of the past, present and future

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The Cal Poly Choirs’ “Traditions” Concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 17, in the Performing Arts Center, will feature 100 alumni of Cal Poly’s choral program.

Cal Poly graduates from the last 40 years will form the alumni chorus. The group will be co-directed for several choral gems by Cal Poly Professor Emeritus Thomas Davies, and Director of Choral Activities and Vocal Studies Scott Glysson.

“The Cal Poly choral program was my home away from home while I was a music major,” said Danna Damandan (Music, ’23). “I am so thankful for the way it influenced my life and am very excited to return to the choir room in the Davidson Music Center and Performing Arts Center to make music with amazing friends and meet different generations of phenomenal choir alumni!”

Chuck Hill (Social Sciences, ’93) added: “I can’t wait for this concert! It’s going to be so great to see and sing with all of my Cal Poly Choir friends. I just hope I can still carry a tune.”

Mark Fugate (Business Administration, ’85, MBA, ’99), was so impacted by his experience in the choral program that he and his wife, Stephanie, generously established the Thomas H. and Susan A. Davies Choir Endowment last year in honor of Davies and his wife, Susan, who accompanied the choirs. The fund supports the student choir experience, including travel, recruitment, professional student development and other enhancements to students’ choral experience.

Cal Poly full choir crowds the stage during a performance

University Singers will open the concert with traditional favorites including “How Lovely Are the Messengers” by Felix Mendelssohn, as well as modern selections like Byron J. Smith’s gospel work “Make a Way.” John Knutson, Cuesta College’s director of choral and vocal jazz program, is guest conductor of the group this quarter.

The Chamber Choir will present a preview of its “Sacred Sounds” concert in Mission San Luis Obispo on May 25, which will include the mass setting “Missa O quam gloriosum” by Spanish Renaissance Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548-1611) and contemporary works by Stephen Paulus, an American Grammy Award winner who died in 2014, and Zanaida Robles, an award-winning Black American female composer, vocalist and teacher.

PolyPhonics will perform works from its upcoming tour of the San Francisco Bay Area: Alberto Ginastera’s riveting “The Lamentations of Jeremiah the Prophet” from 1946, Pawel Lukaszewski’s beautiful setting of “Crucem tuam adoramus,” “Breaking Dawn,” a modern work by Scottish composer Cecilia McDowall, and “Yon Monn Nuovo,” a vibrant and exciting work in Haitian Creole by Sydney Guillaume.

Glysson will conduct the Chamber Choir and PolyPhonics. Paul Woodring will accompany the choirs on piano.

Tickets to the concert are $15 and 20 for the public, and $10 for students. Event parking is sponsored by the Performing Arts Center. Tickets are available at the Cal Poly Ticket Office between noon and 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. To order by phone, call 805-SLO-4TIX (805-756-4849). Patrons receive a 20% discount when buying season tickets to four Music Department events through the Performing Arts Ticket Office; Cal Poly faculty and staff receive a 20% discount on individual tickets.

The event is sponsored by Cal Poly’s Music Department, College of Liberal Arts and Instructionally Related Activities program.

For more information, visit the Music Department’s calendar website, email [email protected], or call 805-756-2406.