Pacific Chorale Heralds the Holidays with “Carols by Candlelight”

Pacific Chorale, Led By Artistic Director Robert Istad, Heralds the Holidays with “Carols by Candlelight”, Featuring Seasonal Choral Gems From Renaissance and Beyond

Saturday, December 4, and Wednesday, December 8, 2021, 8:00 p.m. at Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church, Newport Beach


Ticketholders Required to Show Proof of Vaccination and Wear Masks Inside Venues

COSTA MESA, CA (November 8, 2021) – Pacific Chorale, considered one of the nation’s leading choirs, rings in the holidays with two performances of “Carols by Candlelight,” a lush compilation of timeless seasonal choral music from the Renaissance and beyond, on Saturday, December 4, and Wednesday, December 8, 2021, 8:00 p.m., at Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Newport Beach. Artistic Director Robert Istad conducts this audience favorite, imbued with the wonder, reverence, and awe of the season. Among the offerings are arrangements of such beloved classics as I Wonder as I WanderDing! Dong! Merrily on HighSilent Night, and God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen, by Leonard Enns, John Rutter, David Willcocks and others, as well as works by noted 20th century English composers Ralph Vaughan Williams and Herbert Howells, and contemporary composers Sarah Quartel, Bob Chilcott, Patrick Hawes, Cecilia McDowall, and Will Todd.

“Nothing is more meaningful for me than celebrating the holidays with Pacific Chorale in Orange County,” says Istad. “Our musicians create palpable joy in every concert, providing an experience we all need now more than ever before!”

“Carols by Candlelight,” the first of two holiday offerings Pacific Chorale is presenting in December, is followed by “Tis the Season!”, a family-friendly program replete with festive carols, holiday favorites and even a visit from Santa Claus on December 19 and 20, at the Reneé and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa.

Pacific Chorale’s 2021-22 Season is made possible by generous support from Platinum Season Sponsor Phillip N. and Mary A. Lyons, and Silver Season Sponsor Charles and Ling Zhang. The “Carols by Candlelight” concerts are generously sponsored by Trish O’Donnell.

Single tickets for “Carols by Candlelight” range from $25 to $70. Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church, 2100 Mar Vista Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660. Audience members must show proof of vaccination and wear masks inside the venue (COVID protocols detailed below). For tickets and information, visit or call 714-662-2345.



ROBERT ISTAD, who “fashions fluent and sumptuous readings” (Voice of OC) with his “phenomenal” artistry (Los Angeles Times), was appointed Pacific Chorale’s Artistic Director in 2017. Under his leadership, the chorus continues to expand its reputation for excellence for delivering fresh, thought-provoking interpretations of beloved masterworks, rarely performed gems and newly commissioned pieces. His artistic impact can be heard on two recent recordings featuring Pacific Chorale: “Mahler’s Eighth Symphony” with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Gustavo Dudamel on Deutsche Grammophon (2021), for which he prepared the chorus, and “All Things Common: The Music of Tarik O’Regan,” which he conducted, on Yarlung Records (2020). Istad has also prepared choruses for such renowned conductors as Esa-Pekka Salonen, John Williams, John Mauceri, Keith Lockhart, Nicholas McGegan, Vasilly Sinaisky, Sir Andrew Davis, Bramwell Tovey, Carl St.Clair, Eugene Kohn, Giancarlo Guerrero, Marin Alsop, George Fenton, and Robert Moody. He regularly conducts and collaborates with Pacific Symphony, Musica Angelica Baroque Orchestra, Sony Classical Records, Yarlung Records, Berkshire Choral International, and Long Beach Symphony Orchestra. An esteemed educator, Istad is Professor of Music and Director of Choral Studies at California State University, Fullerton, where he was recognized as CSUF’s 2016 Outstanding Professor of the Year. He conducts the University Singers and manages a large graduate conducting program, in addition to teaching courses on conducting and performance practice. Istad, who is on the Executive Board of Directors of Chorus America and serves as Dean of Chorus America’s Conducting Academy, is in demand as guest conductor, lecturer, and clinician.

PACIFIC CHORALE, an Orange County “treasure” with a “fresh viewpoint” that “can sing anything you put in front of it, with polish, poise and tonal splendor” (Orange County Register) has “risen to national prominence” (Los Angeles Times) since its inception in 1968. Hailed for delivering “thrilling entertainment” (Voice of OC), the resident choir at Segerstrom Center for the Arts is noted for its artistic innovation and commitment to expanding the choral repertoire. It has given world, U.S., and West Coast premieres of more than 35 works, including numerous commissions, by such lauded composers as John Adams, Jake Heggie, James Hopkins, David Lang, Morten Lauridsen, Ravel, Tarik O’Regan, Karen Thomas, Frank Ticheli, András Gábor Virágh, and Eric Whitacre. In addition to presenting its own concert series each season, Pacific Chorale enjoys a long-standing partnership with Pacific Symphony, with whom the choir made its highly anticipated Carnegie Hall debut in 2018. The chorus also regularly appears with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and has performed with such leading orchestras as the Boston Symphony, National Symphony, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, San Diego Symphony, and Musica Angelica, among others. Pacific Chorale has garnered international acclaim as well, having toured extensively to more than 19 countries in Europe, South America, and Asia, and through collaborations with the London Symphony, Munich Symphony, L’Orchestre Lamoureux and L’Orchestre de St-Louis-en-l’Île of Paris, National Orchestra of Belgium, China National Symphony, Hong Kong Sinfonietta, Estonian National Symphony, and Orquesta Sinfonica Nacional of Argentina, among others. Deeply committed to making choral music accessible to people of all ages, the organization, which has a discography of 14 self-produced recordings and an extensive collection of exceptional free digital offerings, places a significant emphasis on choral music education, providing after-school vocal programs for elementary school students, a choral summer camp for high school students, and an annual community-wide singing event at Segerstrom Center for the Arts.