California Bach Society (Palo Alto, CA)


  • Name:Ms. Helen Barrios
  • Title:President, Board of Directors

Organization Address

  • Organization Name:California Bach Society
  • Address:P.O. Box 1526
    Palo Alto, CA 94302-1526
    United States

Organization Phone

  • Main phone:408 255-6513
  • Main fax:408-261-3421

Organization Web

User Phone

  • Direct phone:650-262-0272

User Email


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  • Mission:
  • The California Bach Society’s mission is to delight audiences with performances of choral music primarily from the Baroque and Renaissance eras, to expand our choral repertoire with less widely known and performed works, and to provide volunteer singers with opportunities to enjoy the satisfaction and camaraderie of preparing for and presenting outstanding performances.

  • Overview:
  • The California Bach Society is a mixed-voice chamber chorus of approximately 30 amateur, auditioned singers dedicated to performing at very high standards. Our Artistic Director, Dr. Paul Flight, is currently in his ninth season with us. The choir rehearses in Palo Alto and performs there and in San Francisco and Berkeley as well. We present four concerts sets per season, from October through May. Performances are often accompanied by top-quality professional instrumentalists and vocal soloists. We offer an internship program for college or graduate students to participate in our chorus at no cost. We also offer a one-day choral workshop in Palo Alto open to all local singers, providing them the opportunity to study music in depth with a noted scholar.
    The Society is an all-volunteer organization with no paid executive or administrative staff. It is governed by a board of directors according to a set of by-laws.Singers pay dues and music costs.
    Our ticket prices remain accessible and we provide discounts for seniors and have extended our student price of just $10 to all "under 30's" to encourage attendance by young people.We maintain outreach programs with several senior centers and charities, offering a block of complimentary tickets.

  • History:
  • The California Bach Society was founded by Edwin Flath in 1971. He began with choruses in Berkeley and Palo Alto, eventually expanding to San Francisco as well. Under his leadership, the Society produced many performances of Bach's Passions, motets, cantatas, the B Minor Mass, and works by other composers. The Society was the first chorus not associated with the SF Symphony to perform in Davies Symphony Hall, presenting J.S. Bach's Mass in B minor in 1981.
    After Mr. Flath's death in 1987, the California Bach Society reorganized under the direction of Edward Bolkovac. Dr. Bolkovac rebuilt the choir as a smaller chamber ensemble, more in keeping with the forces Bach used. In 1994 it produced a commercial recording entitled Musica Barocca, which showcased works by the Roman masters, Caldara, Carissimi, and Frescobaldi.
    In 1998, Warren Stewart was named Artistic Director. Already noted for his innovative programming with the ensemble Magnificat, Mr. Stewart brought his commitment to recreations of original performance context. Under his direction, the Society performed Bach's Mass in B Minor at Grace Cathedral, the Ascension Oratorio to a sold-out audience at the 2000 Berkeley Early Music Festival, as well as Bach's St. John Passion, and Mozart's Requiem. The Society also performed Terry Riley's Sun Rings at the 2004 San Francisco Jazz Festival.
    After Mr. Stewart's departure in 2005, the Society first named Dr. Suzanne Elder Wallace to direct for one season. When she left the area, we named our new Artistic Director, Dr. Paul Flight, a noted countertenor, choral conductor, and educator. A fine voice coach, Dr. Flight has attracted talented new singers, and his sensitive direction has brought new definition to the choir. He is currently in his eighth season as director, and in that time has conducted major works, including J.S. Bach’s Mass in B Minor, St. John Passion,and Magnificat ,Claudio Monteverdi's 1610 Vespers, as well as many innovative choral programs by lesser-known Baroque and Renaissance composers. The choir has received critical acclaim and audiences have continued to increase as a result.

  • Year established:1971
  • Endowment:Unknown


  • Executive / Trustee board size:6
  • Advisory board size:0
  • Staff size:0

Board and Executive Names

  • Board Members / Trustees:
  • Helen Barrios,retired teacher, San Jose, CA, 25 years service, board president, development,
    Craig McCreight,aerospace engineer, Menlo Park, CA, 8 yrs. service, board treasurer,
    Miriam Palm, retired librarian, Palo Alto, CA, 3 yrs. service, board secretary,
    David Siegel, attorney, Santa Clara, CA, 4 yrs. service, board vice president, operations,
    Dr. Henry Kahn, retired physician, Oakland,CA, 1 yr service,
    chorus representative,Ann McCown, technical writer,Menlo Park, CA, 2 yrs. service, member-at-large

  • Executive Director / President:
  • Helen Barrios, board president

Staff Names

  • Key Staff:
  • Margaret Wootton, Wieneke Gorter, Barbara Davidson, marketing committee, John Gale, webmaster


  • Organization type:Grantseeker
  • Country of registration:United States
  • Tax Determination Letter:Unknown
  • IRS Section:501(c)(3)
  • IRS Subsection:None
  • Tax ID:23-7398236

IRS Business Master File Information

  • EIN:237398236
  • Sort (Secondary) Name:
  • Care Of Name:% CRAIG MCCREIGHT
  • Organization Address:PO BOX 1526
  • Organization City:PALO ALTO
  • Organization State:CA
  • Organization Zip:94302-1526
  • Group Exemption Number:0000
  • Subsection Code:03
  • Classification Code(s):1, 2, 3
  • Subsection/Classification Desc.:Charitable Organization, Educational Organization, Literary Organization
  • Affiliation Code:3
  • Ruling Date:September, 1974
  • Deductibility Code:1
  • Foundation Code:15
  • Foundation Code Desc.:Organization which receives a substantial part of its support from a governmental unit or the general public 170(b)(1)(A)(vi)
  • Activity Code(s):089, 092
  • Activity Code Desc.(s):Singing society or group, Literary activities
  • Organization Code:1 (Corporation)
  • Exempt Org. Status Code:01 (Unconditional Exemption)
  • Tax Period:June, 2016
  • Filing Requirement Category:01 (990 (all other) or 990EZ return)
  • Accounting Period:June
  • NTEE Code:
  • Asset Amount:$18,833
  • Asset Code:2 ($10,000 - $24,999)
  • Income Amount:$103,833
  • Income Code:4 ($100,000 - $499,999)
  • 990 Revenue Amount:$101,754
  • Last Updated:2/22/2018 2:47:34 am

This information is directly from the IRS Exempt Organization Business Master File at Exempt Organizations Business Master File Extract. This information is not under the control of the Common Grant Application and is collected and compiled and can only be changed by the IRS.