Established in the summer of 1917, the Vallejo Choral Society (VCS) is one of the oldest musical organizations in the Western United States and the oldest community-based non-professional choir in California. The VCS, or as it was originally called the Vallejo Municipal Chorus, gave its first performance on December 9, 1917 in San Francisco in a joint concert with the San Francisco Municipal Orchestra.
During the next two decades, following the end of WW I and at the time of Great Depression, the VCS had to unofficially disband for several seasons only to be brought back to life by the unwavering enthusiasm of the Vallejo’s singing community. A decade later, the 1941-42 season had to be cut short due to the public’s somber mood following the onset of WW II and the large-scale mobilization of fighting forces for the war efforts in the Pacific. Thus, from its very beginning the history of the VCS was inseparably tied to and reflected the history of the region and the entire nation.
The 1950’s-70’s witnessed some of the largest numbers in terms of choral membership (up to 100 singers) and some of the most exciting musical projects in the choir’s long history. In addition to several professional-quality recordings that the group had put out during that period, VCS regularly teamed-up with such musical organizations as Vallejo Symphony Orchestra, Fairfield and Napa Choral Societies and Solano College Choir in performances across Solano, Alameda and Napa Counties. The 1970’s, in addition to being the decade of Disco Inferno and post-Watergate disillusionment, was also a time of great community spirit and civic pride. During those years VCS regularly performed in Vallejo’s Independence Day Parades, receiving numerous Cultural Achievement Awards and Letters of Appreciations from the City of Vallejo.
Throughout the 1980’s-90’s and into the early years of the new millennium, VCS continues to play a vital role in musical life of the Solano County, attracting new singers from as far as Vacaville, Berkeley and Castro Valley. One of the most memorable events in the choir’s recent history was performance of Beethoven’s Mass in C Major in Fairfield and Vacaville with the Solano Community Symphony during the 2004 Christmas Season. With the group’s membership growing steadily during the past several seasons and performances in front of the capacity filled halls, the future of VCS is brimming with promise and excitement in anticipation of the choir’s quickly approaching Centennial Anniversary!