Our musicians are led by the following team:
Jessica Bejarano – Music Director, Civic Symphony
Jessica Bejarano is thrilled to be the new music director and conductor of the San Francisco Civic Symphony! Jessica also serves as music director at the San Francisco University High School and guest conductor with the Camerata Antonio Soler Orchestra in San Lorenzo De Escorial, Spain.
Jessica received her Master of Arts in Conducting from the University of California Davis; Bachelor of Music in Music Education from the University of Wyoming; Associates of Fine Arts in Music Education from Casper College; and an Artist Diploma from Saint Petersburg, Russia.
During the Summer of 2007, Jessica attended the International Academy of Advanced Conducting in Saint Petersburg, Russia where she received “Honorable Mention” for her performance with the Classical Symphony Orchestra of Saint Petersburg, Russia. Jessica was invited back by the Academy (IAAC) in 2008 to continue her studies with Maestro Leonid Korchmar and to conduct a performance with the Chamber String Orchestra of Urbino in Urbino, Italy. During the same Summer, she also attended the International Institute for Conductors in Bacau, Romania where she conducted the Philharmonic Orchestra “Mihail Jora” of Bacau in two separate performances.
In September 2010, Jessica was one of fifteen conductors selected from around the world to study with famed Maestro Jorma Panula and conduct in rehearsal and performance the Ruse National Philharmonic in Ruse, Bulgaria. During her time with the Bulgarian National Philharmonic Jessica worked closely with musicians and soloists to create a vibrant and exciting performance. Since her appearance with the orchestra and work with Maestro Panula, Jessica is now a welcomed guest conductor every year.
In June 2012, Jessica was invited to the Conductors’ Guild Conducting Mastercourse with Maestra Marin Alsop and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. One month later, in July, Jessica was selected to participate in the International Conductors Masterclass in San Lorenzo De Escorial, Spain. During her time in Spain she worked closely with Maestro Jorma Panula and conducted the Camerata Antonio Soler Orchestra in performance. In August, after Spain, Jessica was accepted into the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music with Maestra Marin Alsop and Maestro Gustav Meier in Santa Cruz, California.
John Kendall Bailey – Music Director, Mozart to Mendelssohn
John Kendall Bailey currently serves as Conductor of the Mesopotamia Symphony Orchestra, Music Director, Principal Conductor and Chorus Master of Trinity Lyric Opera, and Associate Conductor of the San Francisco Composers Chamber Orchestra. In 1994, Mr. Bailey founded the Berkeley Lyric Opera and served as its Music Director and Conductor until 2001. Since then he has been Principal Conductor of Oakland Youth Orchestra, Guest Conductor with the Oakland East Bay Symphony, American Philharmonic-Sonoma County, Diablo Symphony Orchestra, Oakland Ballet, San Francisco Concerto Orchestra, and has conducted productions for Festival Opera of Walnut Creek, West Bay Opera, North Bay Opera, Pocket Opera, Mission City Opera, the Crowden School, Oakland School for the Arts, Dominican University, among others. Mr. Bailey has taught conducting at the University of California-Davis and Notre Dame de Namur University.
As a choral director, Mr. Bailey has served as Music Director of Voices of Musica Sacra, Chorus Master for Festival Opera of Walnut Creek and Opera San Jose, and has been guest conductor for the University of California-Berkeley Chamber Chorus, the University of California-Davis Chorus, Chamber Singers, and Alumni Chorus, and the Berkeley Broadway Singers.
Mr. Bailey is also a composer, and his works have been performed and commissioned in the Bay Area and abroad. In 2010, Carlos Santana and Oakland East Bay Symphony performed his arrangements. As a baritone, oboist, and pianist, Mr. Bailey has performed with the San Francisco, Santa Rosa, Oakland East Bay, Berkeley, Redding, Napa, Sacramento, and Prometheus symphonies, American Bach Soloists, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale, the Midsummer Mozart and West Marin music festivals, San Francisco Bach Choir, Coro Hispano de San Francisco, Pacific Mozart Ensemble, Sacred and Profane, Masterworks Chorale of San Mateo, the Mark Morris and Merce Cunningham dance companies, the Berkeley, Golden Gate, and Oakland Lyric opera companies, and many more. He has recorded for the Harmonia Mundi, Koch International, Pro Musica, Wildboar, Centaur, and Angelus Music labels. He has also been a pre-performance lecturer for the Oakland East Bay Symphony, San Francisco Opera, American Bach Soloists, and Festival Opera of Walnut Creek, a critic for the San Francisco Classical Voice, and a writer of real-time commentary for the Concert Companion.
Thomas Alexander – Music Director, Civic Strings
Thomas Alexander has appeared as conductor with the San Francisco Civic Symphony, Viva La Musica, and impromptuSF. A violinist by training, he joined the San Francisco Civic Symphony in 2000 where he served as Concertmaster and Guest Conductor from 2006 through 2014.
Thomas founded the San Francisco Civic Strings program in 2012, focused around music of the Baroque and early Classical periods. Meant to provide a gentle reentry or introduction for string players to larger ensemble playing, this group of roughly 25 performs three times a year. Thomas has also led the Summer Strings Workshop for three years. Thomas founded the Association’s fifth ensemble, Mozart to Mendelssohn, in Spring of 2016.
Thomas is passionate about the benefits of community music making — bringing all sorts of musicians and audiences together to create something wonderful. He is convinced that a love of music is more powerful than our fear of making a mistake. Further, he is sure that there are more musicians out there looking to play, if they can only find the right ensemble.
Thomas began serving on the Board of the Civic Symphony Association of San Francisco in 2011. Thomas was elected Co-president of the CSASF Board in March 2016. In this role, he is committed to helping the Association further its mission to bring more adult musicians into the “Civic” family and bring more ears to free and compelling concerts.
Thomas received his B.S. in Music from UCSD for violin performance. He currently performs with California Pops Orchestra, the Cambrian Symphony, Schola Cantorum, and Viva La Musica. Thomas founded the Baroque-focused group impromptuSF in 2012.
Thomas received his M.S. in Computer Science from USF and has a “day job” leading an engineering team of a media company in San Francisco.
Jessica Bejarano’s photo courtesy of Jessica Bejarano; John Kendall Bailey’s photo courtesy John Kendall Bailey; Thomas Alexander’s photo by Misti Layne