Cabrillo College
3 Summers Masters of Music

From our President
Our New President
My Beloved World
Steps in Building
The Balance
Vocal Jazz Benefits
Sharing the Legacy
Little Things
What Are You in the Mood?
Remembering Dena

Division Calendar
Division Leadership
Division History
Tactus Newsletters


Help build ACDA's future! "Refer a Friend" to the organization -- encourage all choral music lovers to join our wonderful association!
Now is the time to prepare your audition recording for the Western Division's next conference, February 20-22, 2014, in sunny Santa Barbara, California!

Traditional choral performances will take place in the fabulous acoustics of the recently renovated Granada Theatre! The Granada, "the anchor of Santa Barbara’s Cultural District, underwent a monumental restoration and re-opened in March 2008." This $50 million renovation produced one of America's finest concert halls. Both acoustically and aesthetically, the Granada is absolutely breathtaking!
Granada theater SBPlease submit now as well your ideas for interest session presentations! Interest sessions will take place in our gorgeous beachfront headquarters hotel, the Fess Parker Double Tree, which will also house exhibits.
New for the 2014 Conference will be acceptance of eligible ensembles for informal concert appearance in numerous Showcase Performance slots.  The standards for these performances will be consistent with Granada Theater performances.  Showcase Performance times will be part of the conference program and will be scheduled in the Fess Parker Hotel, close to the exhibits, where large audiences may hear them.  The Fess Parker venue has lively acoustics and features high ceilings.  The purpose of these performances is to provide more opportunities for many excellent choirs in the division to appear and be recognized.  The conference will be a constant flow of quality performances and events.

Steve Hodson - President elect

From Our President
Our friend, musical colleague, and Western Division Treasurer Dena Edwards, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly the week after Thanksgiving.  Dena’s impact on the Western Division was felt in every aspect of our activity... (read more)

Welcome to our New President Elect
Congratulations to Dr. Anna Hamre, newly elected to the position of “President-Elect” for the Western Division American Choral Directors Association.  Anna will be serving with great enthusiasm from July 1, 2013 – June 30, 2015 as President-Elect... (read more)

Best of the New Year to everyone!  As we endure the deep chill in Santa Cruz, I am thinking longingly of the up-and-coming Conference in Dallas and then 2014 in Santa Barbara in hopes of the comforts of warm weather! (read more)

Steps in Building a Successful High Choral Program
The most important part of being a good music teacher is being a strong musician, especially when teaching secondary choral music.  This is often overlooked by many administrations.  If a choral music teacher is hired to teach (and build) a choral performance program at a particular school but does not have a strong grasp... (read more)

The Balance
Teaching a chorus is certainly an exercise in balance.  The best educators in my life and the most effective I see working today are on a never ending quest to find that equilibrium in all facets of their experience and the experience they wish to provide their students.  (read more)

Benefits of Including Vocal Jazz Studies Within the Standard Curruculum
In the late 1960’s, a young jazz educator named Hal Malcolm created the first credited college vocal jazz ensemble at Mount Hood Community College, in Gresham, Oregon. (read more)

Youth and Student Activities: Sharing the Choral Legacy
It is an honor for me to rejoin the ACDA Western Division Board as the chairperson for Youth & Student Activities. This is an area that is close to my heart as a music educator, and I look forward to serving in this capacity and communicating with those...  (read more)

Little Things That Really Make a Difference Fall 2012 ACDA Central Division “Resound”
This past April, the world commemorated the hundredth anniversary of the sinking of the ship Titanic.  Titanicwas the largest ship afloat, “the largest moving object ever made by man.”  The ship was filled with extravagant luxuries such as a Turkish bath...  (read more)

What Are You in the Mood for?
In making decisions to choose music in a multicultural vein, it occurs to me that I might need to step outside of my Major/minor Western scale box, and if so, then I will need to guide my students out of there as well.  Mood and mode come from the same Latin word... (read more)

Remembering Dena Watson
Whether you’d met Dena Edwards or not, you were under the umbrella of her caring.  She was a team-builder for positive, productive community. For those of us who know without question that she loved us, our lives are richer, safer, more joyous, and more meaningful.  (read more)