The Philippine Chamber Singers - Los Angeles (PCS-LA) is a dynamic, diverse and decorated group of Filipino music-lovers, bonded by their passion for choral singing. Founded in 2004, PCS-LA has grown from its humble beginnings of Christmas caroling and performing at local weddings. What was once a small circle of friends from different choirs has blossomed into a tight-knit and talented ensemble. PCS-LA takes pride in making waves and enriching the community through secular and sacred music and promoting the Filipino culture at various venues, cultural events, music festivals, and benefit concerts.
In 2007, PCS-LA participated in the Choral Directors Association's (ACDA) 24th biennial National Convention where they delivered a successful opening night performance at the International Concert Session Gala held in Miami, FL. The choir is the very first local Filipino chorale group that has made the distinction of making an ACDA debut on the National level. PCS-LA also graced the stages at the Long Beach Convention Center, L.A. Sports Arena, the La Mirada Theater for the Performing Arts and the Cerritos Performing Arts Center to name a few. In 2008, PCS-LA performed at the 4th Word Festival of Sacred Music spearheaded by UCLA and at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion for the Los Angeles County Holiday Celebration.
In August of 2009, PCS-LA performed at the Ford Amphitheatre and delivered an outstanding presentation of Ryan Cayabyab's music in "Awit ng Buhay", a musical revue depicting the life of a Filipino, the Filipino family dynamic, and the emotional struggles of overseas workers. The PCS-LA performed under the baton of Maestro Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Philharmonic in October 2009 for his inaugural concert, "Bienvenido Gustavo" at the Hollywood Bowl, and again in 2011 for The Mahler Project's "Symphony of the Thousand" at the Shrine Auditorium. Most recently, July 2012, PCS-LA performed at the Hollywood Bowl once again in "Apl.d.Ap Takes You to the Philippines" with Apl.d.Ap and other members of the Black Eyed Peas (will.i.am. & Taboo), Nicole Sherzinger, Martin Nievera, Ogie Alcasid, Becca Godinez, Dessa, Martin Nievera, Harana Kings, Lou Diamond Phillips & Vanessa Hudgens.
PCS-LA is also involved in community outreach and helps numerous other groups and organizations through benefit concerts including benefit concerts to assist the flood victims in the Philippines that are affected by devastating typhoons.
PCS-LA continues to grow, "making waves" from one end of the Pacific to the next, from the Philippines to the U.S. to help sustain the Filipino culture, making waves in the community to support the community's initiatives, and making sound waves to help maintain the art of and the appreciation of choral singing.
The founding member of then octet and later [formally] the Philippine Chamber Singers – Los Angeles (PCS-LA) in 2007, Gelo Francisco has grown and nurtured this small singing group from performing at Christmas parties and weddings to Carnegie Hall under his baton. The group has flourished and slowly carved its place in the Filipino and American choral scene ever since. Gelo’s talents are brought to concert halls, churches and stages alike both international and local. He also serves as the Music Director at St. John Baptist de la Salle Catholic Church in Granada Hills, CA. A former voice major at the University of the Philippines College of Music under the tutelage of professor Andrea O. Veneracion and an accomplished stage actor/solo vocal performer, Gelo has played in musicals such as “Grease”, “Rama at Sita”, and the stage play “The Romance of Magno Rubio” (Los Angeles and Singapore) to name a few. Gelo hopes that as choirs from the Philippines visit and concertize around the world including the U.S., they will have the full support of every Filipino in the community, wherever they may be.
Anne Jeanette Dwight