El Faro Youth Chorus

El Faro (“The Lighthouse”) Youth Chorus

El Faro (“The Lighthouse”) Youth Chorus is an outreach program of Coro Lux providing high-quality choral music education and performance experiences to young people of the Albuquerque area. With its unique dedication to both excellence in choral musicianship and trauma informed principles, El Faro is a safe, fun, and inviting space for music-making and voice building for youth ages 7-18.

We sing music in a wide variety of styles, and we learn about many cultures, languages, and historical periods through our repertoire. We also learn about breathing, body awareness, vocal health, and stage presence, and of course, we learn how to read and understand music. Music and singing are wonderful ways of sharing our own stories and the stories of people long ago, far away, right here, and right now. Young people have an amazing capacity to expand their own perspectives and grow their own voices through the music they learn, and that is exactly our intention and our purpose in El Faro.

For El Faro, “trauma informed” means we believe in supporting one another through life’s challenges in the way we learn, teach, communicate, and sing. Our singers come from different backgrounds, and we understand that the story of how we came to El Faro contains both happy and sad, easy and challenging, simple and complicated times. We come to rehearsal as we are, and rehearsal must first be a place of safety and support in order to be a place of learning, growth, and excellence.

If you’re interested in learning more, please email El Faro‘s conductor, Gabrielle Dietrich, at gdietrich227@gmail.com. Voice placements will be held by appointment and will include some simple vocal warm-ups. Singers may sing a solo piece if they wish, but it is not required.

Due to the increased risk of respiratory illness transmission through singing, all choristers are required to wear masks over their mouths and noses at all times when indoors, and all are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 at least 2 weeks before the first rehearsal they attend.

Tuition for spring 2022 is $75 per singer. However, financial aid is available, and no singer will be turned away due to inability to pay.

El Faro Youth Chorus rehearses on Thursday afternoons from 4:30-6:00pm at St. Paul Lutheran Church.

Please Click Here for a copy of the El Faro Youth Chorus Spring 2022 Schedule.

FebFest 2022

We Invite YOU to FebFest 2022

with Dr. Rosephanye Dunn Powell,

Dr. Richard Antoine White and more!

Saturday, February 19, 2022 – 9am-5pm (with breaks!)  Sing, learn, discuss, grow!

Concert Sunday, February 20, 2022 – 2pm

Register NOW for Coro Lux’s annual FebFest, (formerly JanFest) featuring the music of our guest composer and conductor, Dr. Rosephanye Powell. Dr. Powell has been hailed as one of America’s premier women composers of solo vocal and choral music. As a choral composer, Dr. Powell has an impressive catalog of works published by some of the nation’s leading music publishers. She is commissioned yearly to compose for university choruses, professional, community and church choirs, as well as secondary school choruses.

Dr. Powell’s works include sacred and secular works for mixed chorus, women’s chorus, men’s chorus, and children’s voices. She has been Professor of Voice at Auburn University since 2001, and holds degrees from The Florida State University, Westminster Choir College and Alabama State University.

An added bonus this FebFest will be the inspirational talk and book signing, given by UNM professor of tuba and euphonium, Richard Antoine White. Dr. White is currently the only African-American male full professor of tuba in the country and has performed with the Canadian Brass Quintet, Indiana University Faculty Brass Quintet, and the symphony orchestras of Baltimore, Colorado, the Malaysian Philharmonic, the Santa Fe Opera, and at the Spoleto Music Festival USA, among many others.

He recently released an autobiographical book entitled I’m Possible, about his journey from homelessness to becoming an accomplished musician, professor and motivational speaker. He’s been featured on The Today Show, PBS Newshour, CBS Evening News and more, and his positivity, incredible story and deeply inspiring message will be a treat for all who hear it.

This event is a non-auditioned choral music festival, open to anyone with a passion for singing, and an interest in learning from Dr. Powell. You do not need to be enrolled in Coro Lux as a member. You will, however, be asked to show proof of vaccination for this event, and masks will be required for the entirety of the event—including all singing.

Given in conjunction with the United Church of Santa Fe (1804 Arroyo Chamiso, Santa Fe), and held in their sanctuary, FebFest is sure to sell out. With only 90 spots and all of northern New Mexico invited, those places will go quickly! The event will take place February 19th and 20th, from 9am-5pm on Saturday, with a concert given on Sunday at 2pm. A light lunch will be provided Saturday, which is included in the registration fee of $65, as is sheet music for the event.

We’re looking forward to singing with you!

Click Here to register for FebFest 2022! You will be redirected to BrownPaperTickets for payment. 

Click here for the FebFest 2022 Schedule (this is a draft copy; please check back here for updates).


Our Staff

George Arthur, Art Director, has been drawing, painting and sculpting his whole life and graduated from the leading School of Visual Arts in New York. He served for 33 years as Executive Design Director at Consumer Reports where he was responsible for the design of the magazine, website, books, and special publications. He was instrumental in the interior and external design of the Consumer Reports headquarters building in Westchester, NY. Before that he art directed the design of Sport Magazine and designed the content and covers for Life Magazine. George is a prize-winning photographer and a designer of many books, posters and websites.

Since its inception in 2015, George has been Board President of Coro Lux and a singer in the bass section.  He is the principal at George Arthur Design, located in Placitas, New Mexico, which specializes in graphic design and wood sculpture.

He has been a volunteer docent and graphic designer at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center for 7 years with a special interest in the murals of the native Pueblo artists. George also designed a 12′ mural for the permanent exhibit, “We are of this Place,” celebrating the organization’s 40 th anniversary. George was selected as the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center’s  “Volunteer of the Year” in 2017, the first year of the program.

Jonathan Davidson, Associate Conductor, is a tenor in Coro Lux.  He is director of choirs at Del Norte High School in Albuquerque as well as a private voice teacher. Jonathan enjoys teaching and performing a variety of styles from opera to popular music. His degrees include a Master of Music from the University of New Mexico in Vocal Performance and Choral Conducting and a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Eastern Oregon University.

Gabrielle Dietrich, Director of the Children’s Chorus, (gdietrich227@gmail.com) has been leading youth choirs since 2000, and she finds incredible joy in helping young people find their voice. A graduate of University of the Pacific, University of Colorado at Boulder, and the Kodály Institute in Kecskemét, Hungary, Dr. Dietrich has sung, taught, and conducted across the United States and in Ireland, the UK, Hungary, and Austria. From 2012-2021, Gabrielle was an Associate Teaching Professor of Music at Penn State Erie, the Behrend College, where she also served as Artistic Director and Conductor of the Young People’s Chorus of Erie, northwest Pennsylvania’s only comprehensive youth choral program. Gabrielle is thrilled to call Albuquerque her new home, and she is grateful and excited to be a part of the Coro Lux team.

Ashley Jonkman, Executive Assistant (ashley.jonkman@abqcorolux.org) — Ashley began life in a musical home, with an elementary music teacher for a mom and a father who loved to tinker on the guitar. She played piano and clarinet as a child, and has sung in choirs and on church worship teams since a young age. She has her Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Azusa Pacific University in the Los Angeles area. She earned her Master’s Degree from College of Santa Fe, and taught choral music and elementary education for 6 years before becoming a stay at home mom to 3 kids. She spends her free time gardening, freelance writing, running, and exploring the outdoors with her husband, Brad and kids Sammy, Josiah, and Phoebe.

Bora Ryu, Youth Chorus Accompanist — A native of South Korea, Bora Ryu is an active solo pianist and collaborative pianist. She earned her Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance and Literature from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a Master of Music Education from Bob Jones University, and a Bachelor of Music degree from Seoul National University in South Korea.
Before coming to Albuquerque, she actively appeared as an accompanist for prestigious choirs in Illinois. She was an accompanist for the University of Illinois Chamber Singers under the baton of Andrew Megil. Dr.Ryu was also an accompanist for the University of Illinois Women’s Glee Club, Central Illinois Youth Chorus, All-state Junior Chorus of Illinois,and Illinois Summer Youth Music Choir. She truly enjoys her accompanying work and finds it meaningful to be a part of music making process.

Mary Ann Ybarra, pianist, enjoys living out her aspirations of being a performing pianist. Her degrees include the Doctor of Musical Arts from The University of Texas at Austin, Master of Music from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., and Bachelor of Music from Texas Tech University in Lubbock. Before moving to Albuquerque, she taught piano, pedagogy and theory keyboard classes for 18 years at Indiana University-South Bend, Saint Mary’s College, Bethel College, and in her home teaching studio. However, it is here in Albuquerque that she has pursued her heart’s desire of sharing music with others through performing. Not only does she collaborate on individual instrumental and vocal recitals, playing 5-10 per semester, but she also works with vocal, operatic, and orchestral ensembles. She is thrilled and honored to be working with Coro Lux.

Doing Good While Doing Well

Doing Good While Doing Well

Coro Lux has an unofficial motto that we like “to do good while we do well.” Although we are, of course, a non-profit ourselves, we have often used our concerts as a way to draw attention to other worthy causes in our community and to help raise funds for them, as well. To date our efforts have benefitted:

  • The NAACP College Scholarship Fund (JanFest 2021)
  • The NM Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind (Fall 2020)
  • Paws and Stripes (Fall 2017)
  • The Roadrunner Food Bank (JanFest 2020)
  • And our own members in need of financial assistance during Covid-19

We look forward to continuing to help when and where we can, as we continue to further our official mission: Coro Lux (“Chorus of Light”) is a non­profit organization dedicated to the preparation and performance of great choral music for the enrichment and delight of our audiences and ourselves, and to propagating love of the choral art in the next generation of singers.

Emeritus Members

Emeritus Members

Kate Austin

John Farris

John and Diane Hawley

Jeff and Jane Lawrence

Liz McMaster

Wendy Orley

Ildy Rolfs

Gayle Shipp

Lynn Spray

Thanking Our Donors

Thanking Our Donors

ABQ Coro Lux is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and values your support and investment in great choral music!

We very much appreciate the support given to us any time of year.  

A BIG THANK YOU TO OUR DONORS! To see the list of donors, please Click Here.


An Evening with Charles Bruffy

Come sing with multiple GRAMMY® award winning choral conductor Charles Bruffy!

Tuesday, February 18th from 7-9pm

Central United Methodist Church, 201 University Blvd. Albuquerque

Free Admission

One of the most admired choral conductors in the United States, GRAMMY® winner Charles Bruffy began his career as a tenor soloist, performing with Robert Shaw. Shaw encouraged his development as a conductor, and in 1999, The New York Times named him as the late, great conductor’s potential heir.

Bruffy has been artistic director of the Kansas City Chorale since 1988. He has been chorus director for the Kansas City Symphony Chorus since 2008 and was artistic director of the Phoenix Chorale from 1999-2017. He has been director of music at Rolling Hills Presbyterian Church since 1994. He conducts workshops and clinics across the U.S., including teaching at the Westminster Choir College Summer Conducting Institute since 2006.

Bruffy’s eclectic discography includes six recordings with Nimbus Records and seven with Chandos Records. The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences has recognized five of these recordings with a total of 12 GRAMMY® nominations and three GRAMMY® wins, most recently in 2015 for “Best Choral Performance” for his recording of Rachmaninoff’s “All-night Vigil.”

In his spare time, Bruffy breeds and raises Arabian and Saddlebred horses on his ranch just south of Kansas City in Cass County.


Attendees — please download your own copies and bring to the rehearsal.

To register, please click here.


In the Time of COVID: Singing in a Strange Land

with Rollo Dilworth, James Abbington, and more!

January 16th, 2021 – 9am-5pm (with breaks!)  Sing, learn, discuss, grow!

The 3rd Annual MLK JanFest event on January 16, 2021, co-hosted by the United Church of Santa Fe and Coro Lux, will be virtual this year.

Our headliner will be award winning composer, educator, and conductor Dr. Rollo Dilworth. Dr. Dilworth has published more than 200 choral compositions as well as written or co-authored three books on choral technique. A frequent guest conductor, he has led 57 all-state choruses.

Our keynote address will be given by Prof. James Abbington of Emory University, titled “Spirituals and Gospel Songs: Singing in a Strange Time.”

JanFest will be co-led by the Rev. Talitha Arnold and Bradley Ellingboe. The program also features sessions on the voice by Dr. Stevie Springer and updates on COVID-19 by Dr. Joe Alcorn discussing the prospects for live choral events in the coming year.

The seminar will cost $37.50.

Click Here to register for Singing in a Strange Land! You will be redirected to BrownPaperTickets for payment. 

View a DRAFT schedule for the January 16th festival here. JanFest 2021 (2)

For Members

For Members

Spring 2022 Registration – Returning Members – $85

If you are not a current Coro Lux member, please go to the Auditions page to learn about joining.

Enter Name then Click Buy Now

Contact Us

Contact Us


ABQ Coro Lux  P. O. Box 37081  Albuquerque, NM 87176-7081

info@abqcorolux.org   Facebook:  ABQ Coro Lux