PSGMC Artistic Team

PSGMC Artistic Team Members: Jeff Kopasz, Music and Rehearsal Assistant; Jerry R. Soria Foust, Artistic Director; Martin Coogan, ASL Interpretor, Chip Prince, Bruce Kenyon’s The Arrangement Director not pictured Joel Baker, Principal Accompanist

Board of Directors

To email the individual, click on their name

Executive Board Members

Board Members

Additional

Chorus Administrator

Steve Baker, Chorus Administrator.Steve Baker

After a 29-year career in IT and Marketing with Hewlett-Packard, Steve retired and moved to the Coachella Valley with his husband Doug Nagel. After getting board with retirement, he went back to work as an insurance agent for 1st Community Insurance Services, where he worked for 10 years. Steve joined PSGMC in 2010 and has served on the Board of Directors as Treasurer and is the prior President. Mr. Baker is a first tenor with PSGMC and also sings in the chorus with Coachella Valley Classical Voices. He is pleased to be the Vice-President of the Desert Winds Freedom Band.

Steve was recently hired as Chorus Administrator. He will take care of the growing administrative tasks behind the scenes, that help PSGMC run smoothly. Steve and his husband Doug Nagel live in Cathedral City. They enjoy the vibrant cultural life in the Coachella Valley and spending time with their two dachshund/chihuahuas, Luna and Gabi.

 

Artistic Director

Jerry Soria-Foust.Jerry R. Soria-Foust is a professional music educator and arts leader, with a career spanning more than 25 years. At the age of 19, Jerry had his first GALA choruses experience, performing in the inaugural season of the Indianapolis Men’s Chorus. That experience was transformational, and he credits participation in a number of GALA organizations for the fulfilling life he leads as a teacher, leader, artist, husband, dad and grandpa.

From 2005-2009, Jerry served as Artistic Director for the San Diego Men’s Chorus, where he led the chorus through a number of milestones, including performing as main stage entertainment on an ocean liner for RSVP cruises, singing the national anthem for the San Diego Padres, and becoming the resident choral ensemble in the newly renovated Balboa Theatre in downtown San Diego. During his time with SDMC, the Chorus collaborated with a number of award-winning artists, including Tony-nominated Sharon McNight, Broadway & American Idol star Frenchie Davis, Olympic legend Greg Louganis, playwright Del Shores, Grammy-nominated Westwind Brass, the San Diego Women’s Drum Circle, and more.

Jerry was the Founding Director of Opus Q – A Men’s Vocal Ensemble, a select ensemble specializing in diverse repertoire performed in intimate settings in the Bay Area. He also served briefly as the Artistic Director for the Lesbian/Gay Chorus of San Francisco, where the chorus collaborated with luminaries like Sharon Gless and Sir Ian McKellen, as well as the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus.

As a professional theatre director and producer, Jerry has been involved in over 100-ticketed productions. As Executive Director and Director of Education of Berkeley Playhouse, he led expansion of the organization’ programs, ticket sales, subscribers and budget by 400%. From 2011-2019, Jerry founded and served as Artistic Director of Windy City Performs, an all-ages professional theatre and conservatory in Chicago, where he created after-school and pre-professional training programs in music, dance and theatre. WCP was nominated for multiple Broadway World Chicago awards over the years; and was named Chicago Magazine’s Readers’ Choice award for Best Theatre in 2016.

Jerry’s passions include inspiring people of all ages to love the performing arts, creating access to life-changing performing arts opportunities for children of all backgrounds, and exploring how the arts can answer some of today’s most difficult challenges. Jerry is a graduate of Butler University and San Diego State University. In addition to serving as the proud director of PSGMC, Jerry currently teaches instrumental and choral music in Riverside County.

Accompanist

Principal Accompanist

Joel Baker.Joel Baker is a native of the Seattle area, and earned his B.A. degree from the University of Washington School Of Music, where he studied with internationally acclaimed pianist Robin McCabe. While in Seattle, Joel was a pianist for Nordstrom for fifteen years.

Moving to the desert in 2003, Joel began playing in various venues around town, and can currently be found at Streetbar, Three Sixty North, Wally’s Desert Turtle, and The Purple Room, where he plays for “The Judy Show,” starring Michael Holmes. Recently, Joel served as music director for “The Who’s ‘Tommy'” at Palm Canyon Theater. He lives in Palm Springs with his husband, Don. For more fun facts, please visit Joel’s web site at www.misterpiano.com.


Artistic & Rehearsal Assistants

Chip Prince, Bruce Kenyon’s The Arrangement Director

Chip Prince.Chip Prince is thrilled to be involved with PSGMC after a 22-year absence from Palm Springs. While living in New York City he sang in and accompanied the NYC Gay Men’s Chorus, under Dr. Charles Beale. Chip has had over 30 years of experience playing piano and conducting Broadway shows and tours. He served as Associate Conductor on the National Tour of Newsies and can be heard playing piano in the Broadway HD movie. New York and National Tour keyboard and/or conducting credits include Les Misérables, Sunset Boulevard, Miss Saigon, Mary Poppins, Ragtime, The Fantasticks, and A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder. Back in the desert since 2020, Chip most recently music-directed and accompanied Coachella Valley Repertory’s 2023 West Coast Premiere of The Fantasticks, a Love Story Reimagined. He is honored to continue promoting Barbershop-style music as presented here by Bruce Kenyon’s The Arrangement.


Jeff Kopasz.

Jeff Kopasz, Music & Rehearsal Assistant

Tenor Section Leader, joined PSGMC in 2016. He is in his 13th year teaching Music in schools, the past 7 of which are here locally with Palm Springs Unified School District. He has also music-directed several full-scale and “Broadway Junior” musicals at his schools. Jeff is an active member of the Palm Springs Teachers Association and serves as one of their CTA State Council reps. Jeff is a graduate of Chapman University’s Conservatory of Music, (B.M. Music Education; Conducting); he is currently studying for a Masters degree at CSU San Bernardino.


Doug Nagel.Doug Nagel, Vocal Coach

Montana native Doug Nagel sang over 80 operatic baritone roles including Count, Scarpia, Dracula, Dutchman, Figaro, and Germont. Doug returns to Billings in March to sing John the Baptist and direct Rimrock Opera’s production of Salome.

Doug premiered the role of Theseus in Roumanis’ Phaedra, broadcast on PBS. International attention came when he created the role of de Santander in the Virginia Opera world premiere of Musgrave’s Simon Bolìvar, later singing the production at the Royal Albert Hall, London, broadcast on the BBC. Mr. Nagel is heard on Albany Records in Nosferatu as the title role of Orlock (Dracula).

Nagel was the Artistic Director of Rimrock Opera, where he guided 26 productions including Aïda, Così, Traviata, Butterfly, Crucible, Barber, Merry Widow, Bohème, Figaro, Girl of the Golden West, Elixir, Tosca, Carmen. Doug has judged the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and sat on the NEA Opera Grant Committee.

Nagel recently retired as Associate Professor from MSU Billings. Residing in the Coachella Valley with his husband, Steve Baker, a longtime member of PSGMC and former board president. Nagel has a voice studio and directs the troupe of professional singers, Coachella Valley Classical Voices. Doug proudly serves as the Vocal Coach for PSGMC.

Sign Language

Martin Coogan.Martin Coogan – Sign Language Interpreter

Martin has been involved in music and theater, in some fashion, since his youth as a dancer/choreographer. His talents include being a DJ, costume designer, hair and make-up artist, as well as assisting in direction and producing. When he stepped into the signing world in 1995, in the beginning, Martin would watch performance interpreters and be in awe and think, that was not possible for a person whose second language is ASL. All that changed, when he moved to the valley from Seattle, nearly ten years ago. “It is a privilege and an honor to be the signer for the Palm Springs Gay Men’s Chorus, Pah!”