Berkshire Choral International Chorus & Acclaimed Conductor Robert Istad Perform at SSU Green Music Center

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Extraordinary Acoustic Quality Draws Renowned Musicians

The chorus of premier music-educational institution, Berkshire Choral International, accompanied by the Santa Rosa Symphony, will perform at the breathtaking Green Music Center.

The chorus of premier music-educational institution, Berkshire Choral International, accompanied by the Santa Rosa Symphony, will perform at the breathtaking Green Music Center. Berkshire Choral International Chorus’ return to this acclaimed venue is a direct result of the program’s huge popularity with both singers and audiences alike. The venue, Weill Hall at Green Music Center, has attracted national attention, lauded as “one of the most remarkable performance spaces in the country,” by the Huffington Post. The chorus boasts singers from dozens of states and several foreign countries, performing Handel’s “Israel in Egypt.” The performance will take place at Weill Hall, Green Music Center on Saturday, June 18th, at 7:30 PM. Tickets are $15 for SSU students, and $30 for the general public. For tickets and more information, please visit:, call 1.866.955.6040 or email tickets(at)sonoma(dot)edu

Santa Rosa Symphony (SRS) Executive Director Alan Silow says, “The Green Music Center was first conceived by local community and university leaders who were also choral singers.” Weill Hall is the result of their vision-- an acoustically-superb, world-class venue that provides an exceptional experience for audiences and musicians alike. Since its 2012 debut, it has become the centerpiece of the Green Music Center.

Berkshire Choral International (BCI) choristers had wanted to tour a West Coast venue for many years. After researching numerous sites, BCI management determined that the Green Center provided the best opportunity for an amazing concert venue. The acoustics are perfectly crafted for optimal expression of exactly this type of choral musical performance. Although it was not yet built, BCI was so impressed by the plans and design elements for sound they immediately scheduled their first West Coast program a week after the Center opened, and now return for a second time. BCI is dedicated to enhancing the skills of choral singers, while extending the knowledge and appreciation of choral singing and its tradition to singers and audiences alike. It attracts outstanding conductors and appreciative audiences around the globe.

Acclaimed conductor Robert Istad will helm the June 18th performance. Robert Istad is Associate Professor and Director of Choral Studies at California State University, Fullerton, where he conducts the University Singers and Women’s Choir in addition to teaching courses in conducting, advanced interpretation and literature. He is in high demand as an adjudicator, guest conductor and guest clinician throughout the nation, and is currently the conductor and artistic director of the prestigious Pacific Chorale. Under his direction, the CSUF University Singers have performed all over the world, and were featured at the 2012 ACDA Western Division Conference. This will be his first time conducting a BCI chorus.

About the Berkshire Choral International:

Berkshire Choral International, founded in 1982, is an intensive program to promote choral singing. Based in Sheffield, Massachusetts it is a not-for-profit educational institution with a unique purpose: to provide knowledgeable amateur singers with professional-level choral immersion experiences. Participants rehearse with and learn from world-class eminent conductors and a professional faculty for a week, and then perform in a full-fledged symphony concert. During weeklong singing vacations at culturally rich US and international locations, experienced amateurs study, rehearse, and perform masterpieces of the choral repertoire, with in-depth workshops and courses rounding out the educational experience. BCI brings together choral singers from the US and around the world for performances and also offers scholarship opportunities for music students. For further information, please call (413) 229-8526 or visit

About the June 18th 2016 Performance Piece:

First performed in 1739 in London, Israel in Egypt was shocking to early audiences. They were not used to hearing Holy Scripture performed to music, but to poetic interpretations of Scripture. The two-part oratorio also differed from Handel’s “sacred opera” oratorios in that there was no cast of characters. Handel revised and revived the work in 1756, and this is the form in which it still is sung. Part I is based on Exodus and tells the story of Moses, the seven plagues, and the parting of the Red Sea. Part II is Moses’ song of praise for the Israelites’ deliverance.

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