January 27, 2015

Contact: Michele Abba

ARTS Obispo to Honor Two Cal Poly Music Faculty Members Jan. 31

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly music faculty member Jacalyn Kreitzer and Music Professor Emeritus Clifton Swanson will be honored for outstanding achievement in the performing arts by ARTS Obispo on Saturday, Jan. 31.

Kreitzer and Swanson are among five honorees to be feted at the inaugural ARTS Obispo Honors awards presentation held this year at the Camp San Luis Obispo Officers Club. ARTS Obispo Honors is intended to be an annual event.

Kreitzer is being recognized in the vocal category, and Swanson is being honored in the instrumental category.  

A mezzo-soprano, Kreitzer has taught applied voice and performance at Cal Poly for 19 years. She also gives private lessons in classical voice, musical theater and alternative voice, and works to help repair damaged voices.

As founder of the Cal Poly Student Opera Theatre, Kreitzer has produced operas such as Purcell’s “Dido and Aeneas,” Haydn’s “The Apothecary,” and Strauss’ “Die Fledermaus.” As artistic advisor for Opera San Luis Obispo, she has collaborated in such productions as Puccini’s “Suor Angelica” and Mozart’s “The Magic Flute.”

She has sung with some of the world’s greatest houses and symphonies, including the Deutsche Oper Berlin; the Metropolitan Opera and Carnegie Hall in New York; Los Angeles Philharmonic; Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, France; Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona, Spain; Lyric Opera of Chicago; San Francisco Opera; New York City Opera and the Los Angeles Music Center Opera.

Swanson taught at Cal Poly from 1967 to 2004 and served as chair of the Music Department for 18 years. He conducted the Cal Poly Chamber Orchestra, which nearly quadrupled in size under his direction.  

He was integral in establishing the bachelor's degree program in music, which graduated its first class in 1994. He had served as director of Cal Poly's London Study program and music advisor to the Cal Poly Arts Music Series. He was a member of the steering committee for the design and construction of the Performing Arts Center, a member of the board of directors of Cal Poly Arts, and a member of the Performing Arts Center Advisory Board.

He played a major role in the evolution of music in San Luis Obispo county. He co-founded the San Luis Obispo Mozart Festival (now Festival Mozaic) in 1970 and conducted the San Luis Obispo Symphony from 1971 to 1987. He is president of the Foundation for the Performing Arts Center board of directors.

As a bass player, Swanson has played with many organizations and in numerous festivals. He currently plays with the San Luis Obispo Symphony and Symphony of the Vines.

ARTS Obispo advances the visual, literary and performing arts through programs that promote public access to the arts, arts in educational settings, local arts planning and collaboration, and opportunities for artists and arts organizations.

For more information on the event, including the other honorees, visit the ARTS Obispo Honors website at:, or contact ARTS Obispo Executive Director Jenna Hartzell at 805-544-9251.

For more information on the Cal Poly Music Department, call 805-756-2406.

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