Seth houston

to the site of Dr. Seth Houston, choral conductor, composer, and scholar. Houston serves as director of choral activities and associate chair for performance at the University of California, Irvine Claire Trevor School of the Arts, where he directs the university’s Chamber Singers and teacher conducting, composition, and musicianship. Recent highlights include presenting a workshop performance of a major new work by Ellen Reid that was commissioned by the Los Angeles Master Chorale, hosting composers Morten Lauridsen and Moira Smiley for residencies and concerts of their works, and performing the Brahms Requiem and Haydn’s Nelsonmesse. Houston will lead a world premiere performance of a new work by Ellen Reid, commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic, at Walt Disney Concert Hall in October 2018.

    Prior to his appointment at UCI, Houston served for two years as director of choral activities at Carroll University, in Waukesha, WI, where he conducted Concert Choir and Chamber Singers (formerly Vocal Collective) and taught courses in choral literature, choral methods, choral conducting, vocal pedagogy, and music history. Under Houston’s leadership, Carroll’s Concert Choir performed Vaughan Williams’s Dona Nobis Pacem in Carnegie Hall, performed Mozart’s Requiem with the Wisconsin Philharmonic, and presented a concert of choral music from the Americas at the Wisconsin State Music Conference. Houston also served as chair of the WCDA Wisconsin Collegiate All State Choir.

    Houston holds a DMA degree in choral music from the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, where he studied with Jo-Michael Scheibe, Morten Lauridsen, Nick Strimple, Donald Brinegar, and Cristian Grases. While at USC, Houston served as co-conductor of USC Thornton University Chorus, director of music at Unitarian Universalist Community Church in Santa Monica, and founding artistic director of Canticum Novum LA. More recently, he served as director of the DeKalb Festival Chorus, which he conducted in works including Haydn’s Missa in Angustiis (“Lord Nelson Mass”) and Gjeilo’s Dark Night of the Soul.

    Houston has presented research on the music of  Brahms, Schumann, and the American shape-note tradition at national conferences of the American Brahms Society, National Collegiate Choral Organization, and College Music Society. Houston’s compositions and arrangements are published by Santa Barbara Music Publishing, Inc and Walton Music. A committed educator, Houston taught middle school and high school choir for nine years and has directed ensembles with the Chicago Children’s Choir, Village Harmony, and Big Sky.

    On this website, you can find Houston’s bio, news, upcoming events, and compositions. You can also find Houston on YouTube, SoundCloud, and Facebook. Highlights include:

  1. BulletUCI Chamber Singers, together with video artists Keith Skretch and Hana Kim, the Donald Brinegar Singers, and singers from USC Thornton, to perform the world premiere of a new work by Ellen Reid, commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic, at Walt Disney Concert Hall on October 9, 2018.

  2. BulletUCI Chamber Singers joined forces with California State University Bob Cole Chamber Choir, directed by Jonathan Talberg; Riverside City College Chamber Choir, directed by John Byun; and UCI Symphony Orchestra, directed by Stephen Tucker, to present two concerts of the Brahms Requiem on March 9 and 11, 2018.

  3. BulletUCI Chamber Singers presented a workshop performance of dreams of the new world, by Ellen Reid, commissioned by the Los Angeles Master Chorale, on November 11, 2017.

  4. BulletHouston’s composition Big Sky was published in the shape-note anthology American Harmony, edited by Nym Cooke, in Fall 2017.

  5. BulletHouston was appointed Associate Chair for Performance in July 2017.

  6. BulletUCI hosted composer and vocalist Moira Smiley for a residency and concert on April 14, 2017.

  7. BulletUCI hosted composer Hyo-Won Woo for a workshop and a presentation of her works.

  8. BulletUCI Chamber Singers presented Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, or Nelsonmesse, with chamber orchestra on March 6, 2016. Watch the concert here.

  9. BulletUCI’s vocal quartet won “best music” for UCI’s “Zot! yacht” at the Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade on December 16, 2015.

  10. BulletHouston presented his first concert at UC, Irvine, on November 22, 2015, in Winifred Smith Hall. The program featured works by Monteverdi, Bach, Saint-Saëns, Fauré, and Gjeilo. Watch the concert here.

  11. BulletHouston was appointed director of choral activities at the University of California, Irvine, Claire Trevor School of the Arts.

  12. BulletHouston conducted Carroll University’s Concert Choir, together with the Jubilate Chorale and members of University Lake School Chamber Singers, in a performance of Mozart’s Requiem with the Wisconsin Philharmonic.

  13. BulletHouston served as chair of the WCDA Wisconsin Collegiate All State Choir. This festival choir gathered on January 7-8, 2015 and presented a concert under the direction of Sigrid Johnson.

  14. BulletHouston completed his dissertation, “A Cultural History of Georg Friedrich Daumer’s Polydora and Johannes Brahms’s Liebeslieder, Op. 52,” and graduated on December 17, 2014.

  15. BulletHouston’s arrangement The Reapers All with Their Sharp Sickles was recently released on recordings by three collegiate ensembles: USC Chamber Singers, Oklahoma State University, and Concordia University of Wisconsin.

  16. BulletHouston welcomed 220 area high school students to Carroll University for Carroll’s first annual choral leadership workshop, with guest conductor Christopher Aspaas, on November 14, 2014.

  17. BulletHouston served as guest conductor for the Singing in Wisconsin honor choir in Chippewa Falls, WI, November 7, 2014. Other honor choirs recently directed by Houston include Illinois CUSD #300 (Algonquin, IL) and #41 (Lake Villa/Antioch).

  18. BulletHouston conducted Carroll’s Concert Choir in a performance of Choral Music from the Americas at the Wisconsin State Music Conference on October 31, 2014.

  19. BulletCarroll’s Concert Choir premiered Houston’s new arrangement of The Dying Californian on October 31, 2014.

  20. BulletHouston welcomed thirty Carroll alumni to campus to sing in the Alumni Homecoming Choir, under the direction of conductor emeritus Mark Aamot, on October 18, 2014.

  21. BulletHouston led Carroll’s Concert Choir to New York to perform Vaughan Williams’s magnificent Dona Nobis Pacem in Carnegie Hall, under the baton on Jim Rodde, on April 21, 2014. Houston conducted additional performances of the work in Wisconsin and Illinois.

  22. BulletHouston commissioned and premiered Mannahatta, a new choral work by Paula Foley Tillen, on March 1, 2014. Tillen composed the piece, which sets poetry by Walt Whitman, in celebration of Concert Choir’s then-upcoming trip to New York.

  23. BulletSpring 2014 saw the publication of two new choral compositions by Houston: Big Sky, published by Santa Barbara Music Publishing, Inc., and The Wayfarer, published by Walton Music, a division of GIA Publications.

  24. BulletHouston conducted Haydn’s Missa in Angustiis (“Lord Nelson Mass”) with the DeKalb Festival Chorus in DeKalb, IL, on May 5, 2013.

  25. BulletHouston’s composition Stars I Shall Find (SA or TB version, SBMP 1065) was included in the Two Year College Reading Session at the 2013 ACDA National Convention in Dallas, TX.

  26. BulletThe fifth edition of Northern Harmony (2013) includes five of Houston’s compositions: Aeolian Harp, Desert Sorrow, Interstate, Lake Forest, and Smear.

  27. BulletUSC Thornton Chamber Singers, conducted by Jo-Michael Scheibe, performed The Reapers All with Their Sharp Sickles during their summer 2012 tour of New Zealand and Australia, culminating in the New Zealand Choral Federation’s national conference.

  28. BulletHouston conducted Canticum Novum LA, together with Vicente Chavarria and Rayvon Moore, in a program of new music on June 12, 2012. Houston premiered two works by Benjamin Salisbury.

  29. BulletHouston conducted USC Thornton University Chorus, together with Zanaida Robles, in Bovard Auditorium on April 18, 2012. The concert included Houston’s edition of Soar Away and the premiere performance of his arrangement of A Miner’s Life. See a video here.

  30. BulletUSC Thornton Oriana Women’s Choir, conducted by Troy Quinn, premiered the choral duet version of “Stars I Shall Find” on March 30, 2012.

  31. BulletSeth presented a paper on Brahms’s Zigeunerlieder at the American Brahms Society’s national conference in New York City on March 23, 2012.

  32. BulletSeth served as co-conductor of USC Thornton University Chorus for the 2011-2012 academic year. Seth served as assistant conductor of USC Thornton Concert Choir in 2010-2011.

  33. BulletSeth presented a poster session on shape-note singing at the national conference of the National Collegiate Choral Organization in November 2011.

  34. BulletSeth conducted Canticum Novum LA, a new choir dedicated to new music by Los Angeles composers, in a debut concert on June 21, 2011. The concert featured works by Nick McKaig, Ryan Harper, Dale Trumbore, Zanaida Robles, and Houston.

  35. BulletSeth was composer in residence at the Cal State LA Summer Choral Festival in July 2011.

  36. BulletSeth’s paper on Brahms’s Zigeunerlieder was named Outstanding Student Paper at the College Music Society’s Pacific Southwest Conference.

  37. BulletSeth presented a paper on Robert Schumann’s Das Paradise und die Peri at the College Music Society’s national conference in Minneapolis, September 25, 2010.

  38. BulletSeth’s composition Let Peace Begin with Me won the USC Thornton Children’s Song Composition Competition and was premiered at the USC Neighborhood Children’s Choral Festival on March 11, 2010.

choral Conductor,composer, & scholar
UCI premieres new work
 by composer Ellen Reid, commissioned by LA Phil,  at Disney Hall on Oct. 9