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Concordia Wind Orchestra Shares the Stage with Santa Ana High School

The Concordia Wind Orchestra performed a concert at the historic Bill Medley Auditorium on the campus of Santa Ana High School on Oct. 16. The concert featured an excellent program of music by the Santa Ana Wind Ensemble, followed by a combined performance of both ensembles conducted by Dr. Jeff Held. The CWO ended the program with two pieces by Leonard Bernstein, Dance Movements by Philip Sparke, and English Folk Song Suite by Ralph Vaughan Williams.


Concordia University Donne di Canto makes professional recording

On Thursday, May 3, 2018 Concordia’s select women’s choir, Donne di Canto under the direction of Dr. Marin Jacobson worked with a team of audio and video professionals led by Tom Luekens to record three selections featured on the Spring Choral Concert. Recordings demonstrate the versatility of the ensemble which sang Philip Stopford’s lyrical “For the Beauty of the Earth,” Libby Larsen’s rhythmic “She Piped for Us” from Today This Spring and Jeffrey Ames’s rousing Gospel anthem, “Holy is the Lord.” The recordings are featured on the Concordia Choral Music Donne di Canto page.

Handbells being played

New Handbell Composition by Alex Guebert '11 is Profiled

The Handbells Musicians of America November 2017 E-Notes features alumnus Alex Guebert's new published setting of What Child is This?, an intermediate level piece written for a handbell group at Red Hill Lutheran School, led by Concordia alumnus, Ben Hunter. To read the article, scroll down to "Building a Better Mousetrap."

Concordia Performance at Segerstrom Concert Hall

Concordia Performs to
Sell-Out Audience in Segerstrom Concert Hall

Reformation 500: An Evening of Word and Song concluded Concordia's events in commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. The event featured Concordia's four choirs with area church choir members, an honors chorus of students from three Lutheran High Schools, both of Concordia's Orchestras, Concordia's handbell ensembles with ringers from an area church, Tom Mueller - our university organist, dancers, and speakers on Reformation themes over 500 performers! The event was widely acclaimed for its inspiring music and messages, with Lutheran hymnody at its center.

View Concert Online View the printed program

Concordia Performing in CU Center for Reformation Symphony

Concordia Sinfonietta Completes Tour Featuring Mendelssohn's "Reformation" Symphony

The Concordia Sinfonietta, under the baton of Dr. Jeff Held, recently completed a tour as part of Concordia's Reformation 500 activities. The tour included concerts in the historic Bethania Lutheran Church (Solvang) and Grace Lutheran Church, Santa Maria. The program featured Felix Mendelssohn's 5th Symphony ("Reformation") and a lecture about the work in a theological context by former Dean of Christ College, the Rev. Dr. James Bachman. The performance series culminated in a well-attended concert on Reformation Day at Concordia University Irvine.

James Bachman's Lecture

Music, Worship, & Theology Building Rendering

Concordia University Irvine Commissions World-Class Architectural Acoustic Firm for its Music, Worship & Theology Building

WSDG Walters-Storyk Design Group to Create State-of-the-Art Recording Studio

October 4, 2017. Concordia University Irvine (CUI) today announced that it has secured global architectural acoustic consulting firm WSDG (Walter-Storyk Design Group) of New York to design the professional recording studio in its new Music, Worship & Theology (MWT) building. The MWT building—the first building in CUI’s Master Plan—will serve as the intersection of musical tradition and theological foundation, values core to the Lutheran faith.

“Music education has been a relevant pursuit for hundreds of years, and it’s only gaining steam as we better understand its value for culture,” said Assistant Dean, College of Arts and Sciences at Concordia University Irvine Jeff Held, D.M.A. “These new, modernized facilities will be some of the best in Southern California, helping Concordia to remain a leader in music education.”

The 1,110 square foot recording studio will be used as a recording, teaching, and rehearsal space. Given Concordia’s proximity to the Los Angeles music industry, the space will provide a venue for students, professors, and artists to collaborate in facilities that meet the music industry’s standards. Both choral and instrumental ensembles will use the professional recording studio, as will the Music Department’s newest major program—Commercial Music. The Commercial Music major prepares students for careers in musical performance, songwriting, composing for media (TV, film, and gaming) and music production. Concordia’s music program offers a Bachelor of Arts degree for music majors with concentrations in commercial music, composition, church music, instrumental performance, music education, piano performance, and vocal performance.

WSDG has created educational recording complexes for major schools such as NYU and Berklee College of Music. In addition, they have been integral in the creation of acoustic designs for NYC’s Jazz at Lincoln Center, Switzerland’s Luzern KKL Concert Hall as well as recording studios for Jimi Hendrix, Alicia Keys, Jay-Z, and Bruce Springsteen. WSDG is also designing the rehearsal hall acoustics in the new MWT building.

Responsible for the overall design of the approximate 37,500 square foot, three-level Music, Worship & Theology building is Bauer Architects of Newport Beach. Bauer Architects, which designed the MWT building as two wings—the music wing, and Christ College wing, Concordia’s School of Theology, connected by a breezeway—is noted for its user and environmentally responsible designs of performance venues, museums and cultural centers, universities, and corporate and civic facilities.

Southern California-based master builder Snyder Langston will complete construction of the Music, Worship & Theology building at Concordia University Irvine. Credits for the general contractor include the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, Christ Cathedral in Garden Grove, and broadcast studios for NBC, CBS and FOX. “Snyder Langston is honored to be part of this exciting project that will improve the resources provided to Concordia students, as well as music artists throughout Orange County,” said Snyder Langston President John Rochford.

During the pre-construction process, WSDG staff has been collaborating with Concordia University Irvine’s construction team and music department faculty. WSDG design engineers are using acoustic modeling measurement and instrumentation tests and programs to predict and pre-tune individual room acoustics and auralization throughout the building.

“Concordia University Irvine’s new audio education and production complex will be a showplace facility fully designed to facilitate real-world training,” said WSDG Founding Partner John Storyk. “We are extremely pleased to have been selected to help create this recording complex. And, we are confident that it will play an important role in preparing the next generation of educators, musicians, recording artists, and production professionals for 21st Century careers.”

Scheduled for completion in December 2018, the Music, Worship & Theology building main floor will house a 2,250 square foot orchestra hall, a 1,900 square foot choral rehearsal hall, a percussion room, and a piano instruction room.  The lower floor will feature a 1,110 square foot live recording room with three isolation (ISO) booths, a control room, classrooms, an open office suite, faculty offices, an event space, and conference and breakout rooms. The studio will be tied into the orchestral and choral rehearsal rooms, allowing multiple ensembles to record simultaneously. The top floor will accommodate practice rooms, and faculty studios for special practice and instructional tutorials. The MWT, estimated to cost $30 million, will be funded by private donations.

Phillip Triggs

CUI Viola Professor Selected to Join Hollywood Bowl Orchestra

Phillip Triggs, Concordia University Irvine viola professor, was recently selected to join the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra!

In addition to continuing to teach here at Concordia University, Phillip is currently Assistant Principal Viola of Santa Barbara Symphony, a section member of New West Symphony, and frequently performs with Pacific Symphony as a substitute.

Phillip has performed with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra as guest associate principal and as a section substitute with the Las Vegas Philharmonic. He has also performed with the viola sections of Civic Orchestra of Chicago, Opera Pacific, Northwest Indiana Symphony, New Millennium Orchestra of Chicago, and as guest principal with the Riverside County Philharmonic and Golden State Pops Orchestra.

In the pit, he has performed with numerous visiting ballet companies at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and Orange County Performing Arts Center, including the San Francisco Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, and Bolshoi Ballet. He has also worked as a recording artist for film, television, and video games.

Concordia University Irvine congratulates Philip!


Dr. Herb Geisler Invited to Perform at the National Seminar of the Handbell Musicians of America

The Concert Handbells, conducted by Dr. Herb Geisler, have been invited by audition to perform a one-hour evening concert at the National Seminar of the Handbell Musicians of America in July, 2017. It is one of seven ensembles performing evening and daytime events, and the only school or university ensemble selected. The performance will be at 5:45 pm, Thursday, July 13, 2017 at the Hyatt Regency Orange County in Garden Grove, CA. Guest tickets are $10. Also notable is that LA Bronze, a handbell ensemble directed by adjunct faculty Alex Guebert '10, has also been selected to perform.

Choir members holding candles

Dr. Marin Jacobson Selected to Lead Choir for the Lutheran Summer Music Academy

Dr. Marin Jacobson has been selected to lead the choir for the 2017 Lutheran Summer Music Academy. This is a four-week music academy for high school students, rich in worship and music. It will be held in July at Valparaiso University. If you happen to be in the Chicago/Indiana/Michigan area on July 21, I strongly recommend a trip to Valparaiso to hear this choir perform in the Chapel of the Resurrection under Marin's leadership. This ensemble leader position tends to be the one of the most closely kept of leadership roles at the academy. Past directors include some of the most well-known choral directors in the nation, including Craig Hella Johnson, Christopher Cock, and Andrew Last. It is of high significance that Marin will represent Concordia University Irvine in this role. She will be in residence for the full month.

Jeff Held conducting

Dr. Held Invited to Judge Artist of the Year Award

Concordia University's Assistant Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Jeff Held, DMA, was asked by the Orange County Register to serve as a judge on the Register's 2016 Artist of the Year selection committee. Held, a professor of music and orchestra conductor, joined colleagues from the Pacific Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonic Society, Chapman University and other organizations.

Johann Sebastian Bach

Dr. Tom Mueller Performs for Bach in the Subways at Union Station in LA

On March 18, 2017, Dr. Tom Mueller performed an organ recital at Union Station as part of a Bach birthday celebration concert.

Basilica of the Sacred Heart at the University of Notre Dame

Dr. Tom Mueller Composes Rendition of Psalm 150 for Dedication Mass of Murdy Family Organ

The Basilica of the Sacred Heart at the University of Notre Dame (South Bend, IN) is holding its dedication mass for the Murdy Family Organ this weekend. Experts are declaring this new organ to be one of the best organs in all of the United States. For this dedicatory mass, Notre Dame has commissioned Dr. Tom Mueller to compose a new setting of Heinrich Schutz's Psalm 150 for SATB, brass, percussion, and the Murdy Family Organ. Heinrich Schutz is a historically important composer of the Lutheran church. Tom is in attendance this weekend.

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