JSerra Performs for City Tree Lighting

2fef77ed2ecf1f834966590d90c1276dBy Jackie Connor, San Juan Patch

Historic Town Center Park attracted more than 10,000 San Juan Capistrano residents to watch the annual Christmas tree lighting, as well as orchestral music from JSerra Catholic high School, colorful dances and seasonal skits. Saturday evening saw a break from the wet weather, and despite the soggy grounds, the traditional celebration went on.

“If there had been rain, we made contingency plans,” said Special Events Coordinator Heidi Ivanoff. “We made plans to have canopies for rain or shine, but lucky for us, it didn’t rain and we were able to have our San Juan Christmas.”

Santa and city officials began the lighting countdown at about 6 p.m. after the evening’s entertainment concluded to light the 40-foot tall Deodor Cedar tree.

“Our tree lighting ceremony has taken place at different venues around the city,” said Ivanoff. “Over the past five years, our audience has grown from a few thousand to around 10,000.”

Following the tree lighting, crowds immediately migrated toward free cookies, pictures with Santa and free train rides off Verdugo Street. Children scampered to wait in line and cheered for a picture with Santa Claus.

Orchestral quartets as well as carolers set up alongside street corners to play and sing seasonal tunes while shops remained open for business for the evening. The mildly temperate evening saw no rain but a lot of residents enjoying the holiday spirit.

Save the Date: Choral Camp Hosted at JSerra

JSerra’s Choral department is hosting a summer choral camp open to all levels of singers including beginners.

Each day will include voice lessons, reading music lessons, and choir rehearsals where we learn songs together. It is a great opportunity to meet people, make music and have lots of fun.

Camp begins Tuesday, August 21 and goes through Friday, August 24, from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.  each day with a special mini-concert following on Friday. The camp fee is $150 per person.

For more information to to register contact Choral Director, Brian  Dehn at bdehn@jserra.org.

JSerra Catholic High School Announces New Choral Director Brian Dehn to Lead Award Winning Choir

*A press release from JSerra Catholic High School

(San Juan Capistrano, CA)–Music instructor and member of the Chorus America, Brian Dehn will now lead JSerra’s Choral Department beginning July 2011.

Dehn, former music instructor at Cornelia Conelly School in Anaheim looks forward to continually building onto the successful program Choral Director Andrew Alvarez has built at JSerra four short years ago.

“I am proud and honored to be chosen to lead JSerra’s Choral Department, I look forward to many great additions and traditions that JSerra has instilled in the Choral program,” said Dehn.

We congratulate and thank Andrew Alvarez, exiting JSerra Choral Director, for his amazing work with the JSerra choir.  Andrew introduced choral music to JSerra and in four short years he built a program that has achieved rave reviews from audiences across the world, including Pope Benedict XVI, has performed in churches in Florence and Rome, including St. Peter’s Basilica, has won regional and national choral festivals and competitions, and brought great prestige and pride to JSerra.

“Due to Andrew’s great work he leaves a program that is highly acclaimed and one that has attracted the attention of other choral directors,” said Frank Talarico, JSerra President and CEO. “As a result, we are blessed to have strong interest from very talented choir directors who are excited about the opportunity to fill some big shoes left by Andrew’s departure. Brian possesses the expertise, experience, and vision to lead the JSerra choral program on the path of continued success established by Andrew Alvarez.  We are very fortunate to have found someone with Brian’s skill set to take over one of JSerra’s strongest and most valued programs.”

Dehn comes to JSerra with an extensive musical background from Chapman University in Orange, CA. Completing his Bachelors of Music in conducting, vocal performance and music education Dehn comes from Corneila Connelly School in Anaheim as their lead music instructor for the past 7 years.


About JSerra Choral Department

In four short years JSerra built a Choral program that has achieved rave reviews from audiences around the world, including Pope Benedict XVI. The JSerra Choral program has performed in churches in Florence and Rome, including St. Peter’s Basilica, and has won regional and national choral festivals and competitions, and brought great prestige and pride to JSerra. For more, visit www.jserra.org.


About JSerra Catholic High School

Just eight years old, JSerra Catholic High School is quickly becoming one of the region’s top university preparatory institutions. Its graduates include National Merit Scholarship winners, Ivy League university students and Division I collegiate athletes. Located in San Juan Capistrano, the school features $110-million facilities, including a state-of-the-art $40 million athletic complex. For more, visit www.jserra.org.