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The Pacific Chorale ‘Realigns’ Schedule With New Concert Site

Times Staff Writer

In an effort to trim expenses, the Pacific Chorale will move one of its concerts next season out of the Orange County Performing Arts Center in Costa Mesa for the first time since the group began appearing at the center in 1986.

As part of its five-concert 1989-90 season, the chorale will offer a chamber concert by the ensemble’s 40-member Pacific Singers at Mission San Juan Capistrano. The date of the concert will be announced later.

The group also has reduced the number of concerts in its subscription series from four this year to three, although the total number of performances will remain the same with the addition of a second non-subscription event.

Music director John Alexander refused to describe the move as “a cutback” of the chorale’s offerings.

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“It’s just a realignment of the way we produce,” Alexander said. “It will be a cutback in expense for us.”

Alexander said that the program at the mission is “an attempt to see if there is an audience for chamber (choral) concerts.

“The center is much better suited for large-scale than for small-scale works. I don’t think that we can sell chamber works well in the center.”

Until last season, the chorale had offered only three subscription concerts at the center. Last year, that was expanded to four, but subscriptions fell off.

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As a result, Alexander said, the Pacific’s board was “trying to pull back the budget to a realistic figure,” but he did not specify any target figure. The chorale is operating this year on a budget of about $450,000. Next season’s budget has not been determined, he said.

The 1989-90 season at the center:

--Oct. 20: Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis.

--Dec. 2: Works by Praetorius, Respighi and Flor Peeters; plus traditional carols.

--April 28: Verdi’s “Four Sacred Pieces” and choruses from his operas. The program will conclude the Chorale’s fourth annual Choral Festival, in which local high school and college choirs appear in daylong adjudicated performances and then join the Pacific in the evening.

Non-subscription events:

--Dec. 18: “Messiah” Sing-Along at the Center.

--Chamber choral concert at Mission San Juan Capistrano: works by Palestrina, Debussy, Britten, others. Date to be announced.

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