Sandra I Noriega, Ph. D.
Jubilee Chorus, San Francisco - Artistic Director - Conductor (2013 - Present)
Oakland Public Conservatory of Music - OPC Symphony Orchestra
Founder, Artistic Director, Conductor (2008 - Present)
Bay Area Women's Percussion Troupe - Founder, Artistic Director, Conductor (2005 - 2008)
Community Women's Orchestra, Strings Attached - Conductor (2011 - 2014)
Community Women's Orchestra - Assistant Conductor (2010 - 2011)
Symphonic Wind Ensemble, CSUS - Associate Conductor (2006 - 2008)
In 1980, Sandra I Noriega was awarded a full scholarship to the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Completing her studies in 1983, she became the SF Conservatory’s first woman to graduate with a Bachelor of Music degree in Percussion Performance. Likewise, in 1985, she also became California State University East Bay's first woman to earn a Master of Arts degree in Percussion Performance.
Sandra held the tenured position of Principal Timpanist with the legendary Women’s Philharmonic under Maestros JoAnn Falletta and Apo Hsu from 1980 to 2004. Through the years, the WP premiered many works by women composers and recorded four CDs of works by Fanny Mendelssohn, Clara Schumann, Florence Price, Chen Yi, Lili Boulanger, Germaine Tailleferre, Elinor Armor, and others on the Koch International label.
In 2005, she founded and directs The Bay Area Women’s Percussion Troupe, a professional group dedicated to highlighting and promoting the presence of women in the field of Percussion Performance.
In 2008, Ms. Noriega completed an intensive Post-Master’s Program earning a Professional Performer’s Certificate in Instrumental Conducting at California State University, Sacramento. She has been accepted into various Conductor Workshops and been honored on numerous “Who’s Who” in Music lists.
Also, in 2008, Sandra became Founder and Artistic Director of the Oakland Public Conservatory of Music Symphony Orchestra, an all-volunteer orchestra, now in it’s 4th season. Her mission for this orchestra is to publicly perform works by ethnically under-represented composers, women, and living composers, in addition to standard repertoire; and to provide an opportunity for performing musicians to engage, experience, and develop an appreciation for the need and significance of performing these works.
From 2010 - 2011, Sandra served as Assistant Conductor of Community Women’s Orchestra, one of only three Women’s Orchestras in the US. In 2011, CWO asked Sandra to take on the conducting duties for their newly formed String Orchestra, Strings Attached.
In 2010, Sandra became a charter member of Classical Musicians with Disabilities, and was invited to Kiev to conduct for the inaugural concert of "The D Major International Music Festival", with the Ukrainian Academic State Concert Orchestra, in November, 2011. In 2012, Sandra was appointed Associate Conductor of the DMIMF and in May 2012, conducted the Pleven State Philharmonic at the 2nd Music Festival, held in Bulgaria. Sandra was invited by Maestro Cohen to guest conduct the Castro Valley Chamber Orchestra for their October, 2011 concert; by Maestro Canosa of the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony to assist with rehearsals and concert preparations during the 2010 - 2011 season; and by the Watsonville Community Band to conduct their summer concert in 2012.
Sandra has served as Professor of Music at the college level for over 10 years, at the high school and elementary levels since 1975, and as Music Director and guest speaker in various churches for 13 years. She currently serves as Band Director for the Fremont Educational Foundation. From 2008 – 2010, she worked for Education Through Music Bay Area as a Field Supervisor overseeing Music Educators throughout the Bay Area. From 2007 - 2010, Sandra directed the Bay Area Asian Children’s Percussion Ensemble, an outreach program of the Wisdom Culture and Education Organization in Fremont, CA, and she continues to teach in her private Castro Valley music studio. In addition to her music degrees, Sandra holds a BA and a PhD in Biblical Studies focusing on the spiritual nature of music and its inherent ability to affect lives and surroundings in positive and tangible ways.
Maestro Sandra is a proud member of the Conductors Guild, the only music organization devoted exclusively to the advancement of the art of conducting serving the artistic and professional needs of conductors through diverse educational activities and programs. Learn more at www.conductorsguild.org or 804-553-1378.
Thumbtack: Sandra is ranked among the Top 3 Music Teachers in the Hayward Area.