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Pitch Perfect A Theory and Practice of Choral Intonation

You have reached the website of Donald Brinegar, Brinegar Vocal Arts, and the support pages for Pitch Perfect A Theory and Practice of Choral Intonation.  If you have not had the opportunity to purchase the book, you may press on the link below to read reviews and order your own copy.  Use the menu above to explore the pages and sound files.

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Donald Brinegar,

musician and author

Coming May 1, 2020 on, Conducting Primer Seven Principles of Choral Conducting


Donald Brinegar is author of Pitch Perfect A Theory and Practice of Choral Intonation. Professor Emeritus of Pasadena City College, Director of Choruses for the Pasadena Symphony and Pops,  Conductor of the Donald Brinegar Singers, Conductor of the Jet Propulsion Lab Chorus, Artist Teacher of Voice at the University of Redlands, Lecturer in Conducting at California State University, Los Angeles, and adjunct professor and founding director of conducting and voice, Three-Summer Masters of Choral Conducting, CSULA.  Brinegar Vocal Arts is a voice studio with international singing artists.  The Studio also produced the series of books and articles in support of the choral art.

Check out the events button in the menu for the latest activities of Donald Brinegar and the Donald Brinegar Singers!

Phillis Wheatley (b. 1753, West Africa. d. 1784, Boston, MA), which has provided such inspiration for me. According to Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Wheatley is recognized as "the first person of African descent to publish a book of poems in the English language." (If you don't know her life story, please look it up. She was an extraordinary woman!).



Imagination! who can sing thy force?
Or who describe the swiftness of thy course?
Soaring through air to find the bright abode,
Th' empyreal palace of the thund'ring God,
We on thy pinions can surpass the wind,
And leave the rolling universe behind:
From star to star the mental optics rove,
Measure the skies, and range the realms above.
There in one view we grasp the mighty whole,
Or with new worlds amaze th' unbounded soul.

John Muehleisen, composer 

Comminssioned by the Donald Brinegar Singers to set this poem to choral music for a premiere to be given March 29, 2020. 

Composer John Muehleisen specializes in works for choir and solo voice. Since 1996, he has served as Composer-in-Residence and Artistic Advisor for Seattle-based Opus 7 Vocal Ensemble, directed by Loren Pontén and has written more than fifteen works for the group—most recently Eat Your Vegetables! for mixed choir and clarinet—a setting of humorous poems about vegetables by Northwest poet Joanne Gunnerson.

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DBS and Don Signing the Commission

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John Muehleisen

Brinegar's 70th Birthday Concert 

Has been delayed because of Covid-19  Details will be announced in June about rescheduling!

All Saints Pasadena, CA

4:00 pm 

$20 suggested donation

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Engineered by Fred Gustaffson, this retrospective three CD Collection will be released at the concert.  Over 20 years of concerts and conference appearances in a stunning package for just $35.

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Mid-Winter at GoshPa

O magnum mysterium Morten Lauridsen

DBS 2004

The JPL Chorus is proud to be a part of the Pasadena Symphony Education Outreach Program.  Joining with the Donald Brinegar Singers for Beethoven's Ninth Symphony under the inspired direction of David Lockington. 


                                      You may order tickets on the Symphony's FB page. 

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Pasadena Symphony, David Lockington, Conductor


with the

JPL Chorus and Donald Brinegar Singers


Donald Brinegar conducting

Dona Nobis Pacem -- Ralph Vaughan Williams

Donald Brinegar with Morten Lauridsen on the occasion of Lauridsen's 75th Birthday and Concert Celebration

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Donald Brinegar is a conductor, tenor soloist, voice instructor, educator and master class clinician. Professor Emeritus of Music at Pasadena City College, Brinegar directed the Choral Studies program at PCC for 36 years. Brinegar also conducts the Donald Brinegar Singers, a community choral ensemble in Pasadena, California, Director of Choruses for the Pasadena Symphony and POPS, . During the summers he co-directs the Cal State Los Angeles masters program in choral conducting.


He has an extensive background as a performer both as a soloist and a conductor having performed throughout the United States, Japan, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, and Canada. Brinegar has performed as a featured soloist with Robert Shaw, Helmuth Rilling, Roger Wagner, Gerard Swartz, Murray Sidlin, Howard Swan, Charles Hirt, Rod Eichenberger, William Hall, Marvin Hamlisch, Michael Feinstein, and with numerous music festivals, orchestras and opera associations. He has collaborated artistically with Henry Mancini, Barry Manilow, The Los Angeles Philharmonic, John Delancie, and the Chieftains. His choirs have given five performances for the American Choral Directors Association Conferences, California Music Educators (MENC), Choral Conductors Guild, and have performed in Carnegie Hall, the Los Angeles Music Center, and the Hollywood Bowl. In the Fall of 2017,  Brinegar was recognized by the Pasadena Symphony as their Artist of the Year.


The Donald Brinegar Singers, choral ensemble, was founded in the Fall of 1997 as an ensemble of former students and colleagues of Professor Brinegar. Their first concert was given in November of 1997. Their second performance was the premiere of Lauridsen’s organ edition of Lux Aeterna, accompanied by organist James Buonemani. The ensemble presented music of the holiday season and was then invited to perform at The ACDA Western Division Convention in Los Angeles, 2000. Shortly following the convention appearance, the Singers recorded Ubi caritas et amor and Madrigali Six Fire-Songs: for Lauridsen’s compact disc, Northwest Journey. The Singers performed the Chansons des Roses with Lauridsen accompanying at the San Antonio, Texas, ACDA National Conference. The Singers followed with two more performances of Lauridsen’s music in Las Vegas, 2004 ACDA Western Division Conference, and the premiere of Nocturnes (The Brock Memorial Convention Commission) 2005, Los Angeles ACDA National Convention.


The Singers are the resident chorus for the Pasadena Symphony and POPS, having sung for David Lockington, Grant Cooper, Marvin Hamlisch, Larry Blank, and Michael Feinstein. In 2015, the ensemble performed the orchestrated version of Lauridsen’s Mid- Winter Songs along with the Nocturnes (Lauridsen accompanying) with the symphony. The ensemble has also performed at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Walt Disney Concert Hall, the Hollywood Bowl, the Los Angeles Arboretum, and for Brinegar’s publisher, Santa Barbara Music Publishing, Santa Barbara. The Singers have given premiere performances of the music of Bruce Babcock, Neely Bruce, David Childs, Emma Lou Diemer, Morten Lauridsen, Z. Randall Stroope, and Eric Whitacre, among many others. The Singers recorded the background score for the film, The Bridge to Terrabithia, music by Aaron Zigman. They are the featured ensemble in an Irish Folk Song Collection, Letters from Ireland by Mark Brymer.

The Donald Brinegar Singers

ACDA National Conference, February 2005

World Premiere of Lauridsen's Nocturnes

The Donald Brinegar Singers

ACDA Western Division Conference, February 2016

Psalm Concert Telemann, Brahms, And Ives


Recordings of the Brahms and Ives are in the Analysis Section of this site.

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