San Francisco Girls Chorus, Valérie Sainte-Agathe, Music Director and Principal Conductor
Founded in 1978, the San Francisco Girls Chorus is a leading voice in music in the Bay Area and across the nation. Led by Artistic Director Lisa Bielawa and Music Director and Principal Conductor Valérie Sainte-Agathe, the Girls Chorus produces and collaborates in concerts, recordings, and tours that empower young women, expand the field of music for treble voice, and set the standard for the highest level of performance and education. Hundreds of singers ages five to eighteen from more than forty-five Bay Area cities participate in this program, which has won honors including three ASCAP awards for Adventurous Programming and five Grammy awards.
The Chorus School offers a program designed to take young girls from their first introduction to the art of choral singing through advanced choral/vocal instruction. This comprehensive music education includes the study and development of choral artistry, vocal technique, music theory, music history, and performing style. The discipline, teamwork, and concentration young girls learn in the Chorus School rehearsals and performances instill in them the values necessary for high achievement in music and in life.
The Chorus School Level III is an ensemble of approximately fifty girls ages eight to thirteen led by Luçik Aprahämian. With roots in the San Francisco Bay Area and Arizona, Ms. Aprahämian has worked with groups of all ages and skill levels. She was previously co-artistic director of Southern Arizona Opera as well as assistant conductor and chorusmaster for various professional opera companies in the Bay Area, including Opera Parallèle and Bayshore Lyric Opera. Ms. Aprahämian has held various faculty positions in California and Arizona, and currently serves as Music Director at First Lutheran Church of Palo Alto. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of California at Santa Cruz, and her doctorate in conducting from the University of Arizona.