Times Staff Writer

The Orange County Pacific Symphony has chosen Edmundo Diaz del Campo to be the symphony's first assistant conductor and director of education activities, officials of the symphony announced Wednesday. Diaz del Campo, a 38-year-old native of Mexico City, will assume both posts immediately.

Two additional important staff appointments are expected to be announced in the next few weeks, according to Keith Clark, the orchestra's founding director-conductor. The other positions to be filled are general manager--vacant since the resignation of Topper Smith last March--and the new post of marketing coordinator.

Diaz del Campo, a veteran instrumental and choral music educator, has served as assistant conductor of the Conservatory of Music Orchestra of Mexico City and as cultural minister of that city's Fine Arts Commission. Most recently, he was music director at Contra Costa Christian High School in Northern California.

He is a graduate of the Conservatory of Music affiliated with the University of Mexico City and has taken graduate studies in music at USC and the Stuttgart Hochschule for Music in West Germany. He earned his master's degree in orchestra conducting at Cal State Fullerton.

"He (Diaz del Campo) has an exceptionally fine background in both international music and educational training experience. His presence will do much to strengthen our abilities to serve the community," said Clark, who was one of Diaz del Campo's mentors at Cal State Fullerton.

According to Clark, Diaz del Campo will be be conducting some concerts next season. At the same time, the new assistant conductor will supervise current in-school and family-matinee concert programs and will help set up the Pacific Academy of Music, a conservatory for elementary and high school students, at the orchestra's new headquarters in Santa Ana. Also, Diaz del Campo will organize the orchestra's Young Musicians Program for Minorities.

Clark would not disclose Diaz del Campo's salary but said part of it is being underwritten by the City of Santa Ana through an artist-in-residence grant.

The symphony association will begin moving its offices this month from Fullerton to its new facility--a three-story, former church downtown now called Pacific Symphony Center. The orchestra expects to begin rehearsals there this summer, said Clark.

Clark also announced that the $15,000 National Endowment for the Arts grant it received last week will be used to underwrite concerts at Orange Coast College and other community halls in Southern California in the 1985-86 season. The Pacific Symphony was one of 17 orchestras that won federal grants in the regional category this year. (In 1984-85, the Pacific received a $5,000 NEA grant, its first.)

Clark said the 1985-86 operating budget will be more than $1 million, the largest in the orchestra's seven-year history, and the season will consist of about 60 performances. The 1984-85 budget was $900,000, for 56 performances.

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