The People’s Choir of Oakland was founded by world-renowned mezzo-soprano Frederica (Flicka) von Stade in 2020 amidst the pandemic and resulting increase in homelessness in Alameda County, California. The choir, for those suffering from homelessness, will meet weekly (when it is safe) to sing together and rehearse for performances. Everyone deserves the opportunity to express themselves creatively, and PCO will provide that weekly moment for its choir members. Leading rehearsals will be a music director, collaborative pianist and music therapist. PCO’s mission is to invite overlooked communities into collaborative music making to foster a sense of hope and dignity and to enrich perspectives through the power of music.
Virtual Launch Event
On Friday, April 2, 2021 friends from around the US joined us for our launch event with special guests Matthew Shilvock, General Director of San Francisco Opera, Taylor Iman Jones, star of Broadway, and featuring performances by Mezzo-Soprano Jamie Barton, Mezzo-Soprano Joyce DiDonato, Jazz & Blues Vocalist Kim Nalley, internationally-acclaimed vocal ensemble Chanticleer, Bass Kenneth Kellogg, Soprano Christabel Nunoo, tenor Alexander Taite - and Flicka! View the 40-minute program here.
Who We Are
Inspired by her work with the Dallas Street Choir, Flicka desires to bring this community-building program to her unhoused neighbors in Alameda County. She is joined by an advisory board made up of fellow artists and leaders in her community:
Megan McQuillin operatic mezzo-soprano and mother of three
Michael Morgan Music Director and Conductor, Oakland East Bay Symphony, Artistic Director of Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra, Music Director at Bear Valley Music Festival and Music Director of Gateways Music Festival
Michael Mohammed, EdD, Director of Musical Theatre Workshop, Opera and Musical Theatre at San Francisco Conservatory of Music, performer, director and choreographer
Alex Taite Director at San Francisco Boys Chorus Graduate Level Chorus, Director at Chorus Eclectic, operatic tenor, composer/arranger and teacher
Your tax-deductible gift to the People’s Choir of Oakland will support the music director, collaborative pianist and music therapist position, provide a small snack and two-dollar bill at the end of each rehearsal for each participant, and underwrite expenses associated with performances.
I was inspired by my friend and colleague, Jonathan Palant, to create a safe place to sing for people who are suffering the distress of homelessness. I had many joyful hours singing with Jonathan and the Dallas Street Choir and really loved knowing the many wonderful people who make up his choir. I wished the same joy for Oakland, and a group of amazing young musicians and artists are joining together for this adventure. We can’t wait for our first session.
Our Fiscal Sponsor
Flicka and Donna Stoering, Founder and Artistic Director of Listen For Life Foundation, have performed together for many years and recently discovered a new way to bring their shared passions together to enrich the lives of others with music with the synergy of their organizations’ missions.
A special thank you to Donna Stoering and Listen4Life Foundation for their support as the People’s Choir of Oakland’s fiscal sponsor. Listen For Life is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. EIN 65-1200601