San Francisco Bay Area Chorus Directory




Helene Whitson and Valerie Howard both are San Francisco natives.  A 2005 Emerita member of the Library Faculty at San Francisco State University, Helene Whitson served as the Special Collections Librarian/Archivist for the University, as well as the Curator of the San Francisco Bay Area Television Archives, one of the country’s leading local television archives.  Valerie Howard has a Masters degree in English as a Second Language, taught for seven years, and is at present a public sector Financial Services Specialist.  Although neither has studied music academically, it always has been a major part of their lives.  Helene has sung regularly with various community choruses since 1968.  In addition, she is the founder of The Arch Street Irregulars, a small vocal and instrumental ensemble of friends who have met regularly since 1970 on Arch Street in Berkeley to study and sight-read music from medieval to modern.  Valerie has sung with church choruses, as well as singing regularly with various academic and community choruses.




The San Francisco Bay Area Chorus Directory and the San Francisco Bay Area Choral Archive website could not have been produced without the collaboration of my husband, Bill Whitson.  Bill exported all our information from the Filemaker Pro database and did the prepress layout of the book, then served as publisher, arranging for its commercial printing, and then handled its marketing and distribution.  In addition, he created, maintains and updates the Archive website, a formidable task in keeping up-to-date with the explosion in Bay Area choral activity. Finally, he established and moderates the San Francisco Bay Area Choral List, the Yahoo group ba-choral. Bill is also a life-long choral singer, and recently retired after 31 years as an academic librarian at UC Berkeley.


The three of us work together to provide you with as much information as we are able concerning choral life in the San Francisco Bay Area.  And, we could in no way do our work without the generous cooperation of all those who have responded to our questionnaires and telephone calls, and who offer their suggestions and encouragement.


Helene Whitson

1999, revised 2005  


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