San Diego Master Chorale

The Voice Of San Diego



Artistic Staff

Gary McKercher
Gary McKercher
Gary McKercher

Gary McKercher, DMA

Music Director

Gary McKercher was born, raised, and educated in the rural upper Midwest, earning his undergraduate music degree at Luther College, Decorah, Iowa. After a year of public school teaching in Minnesota, he spent a research year at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, England singing with several Cambridge University choral ensembles including the Cambridge University Music Society conducted by David Willcocks, longtime conductor of Kings College Choir, Cambridge.

His advanced degrees in choral music were earned from California State University, Fullerton (MA), and University of Southern California (DMA). Over the past thirty years he has held college/university choral positions in Wisconsin, Iowa, California, and Kentucky. In addition, he completed post-doctoral study at the American Conservatory in Fontainebleau, France (1987), and in summer of 2004 studied and performed with the famed Tallis Scholars at Oakham, England.

While in California, Dr. McKercher sang with several distinguished choral organizations including the Los Angeles Master Chorale, the William Hall Chorale, the John Biggs Early Music Consort, the Carmel Bach Festival, and conducted the celebrated Music at Immanuel concert series at Immanuel Presbyterian Church in Los Angeles.

Since 1998 until coming to San Diego, he has been active in Madison, Wisconsin, founding the Wisconsin Chamber Choir, while freelancing seasonal productions with area musical and light opera companies. The chamber choir has been invited to perform for several state events including the opening of Madison's Overture Center, Wisconsin Public Radio broadcasts, and state choral conventions, in addition to recording and producing several CDs.

Over the course of his career, Dr. McKercher has conducted over forty choral/orchestral works including Bach's "Christmas Oratorio" and "Mass in B minor", Britten's "Cantata Academica" and "Cantata Misericordium", Haydn's "Creation"; Handel's " Messiah", "Ode to St Cecilia", and "Dixit Dominus"; Mozart's "Solemn Vespers of the Confessor" and "Requiem", Elgar's "The Dream of Gerontius"; Brahm's "A German Requiem" and "Naenie", Purcell's "Fairie Queen", and Stravinsky's "Mass" and "Symphony of Psalms".


Martin Green

Martin Green

Associate Music Director

Martin Green is a native San Diegan who has trained and spent his entire musical career here. As a singer, he is equally at home in everything from period Baroque performances to more avant-garde New Music programs, and he is a member of Cappella Gloriana, San Diego's professional chamber choir. He has prepared choirs and accompanied for such notable conductors as Sir David Wilcocks, John Rutter, David Flood, Martin Neary, and Duiane Wolfe.

As an organist, Martin has played as both solo performer and accompanist throughout the US, as well as Mexico, Canada, and England. He has won several awards from the American Guild of Organists and appeared on NPR's "Pipedreams Live!" broadcast from UNLV.

Mr. Green is the Organist and Choirmaster of St Paul's Episcopal Cathedral in downtown San Diego where he is responsible for a large program involving both professional and volunteer singers, the boy choristers and the girls choristers, choral and organ scholars, and serves as the primary organist and choral director for cathedral and diocesan functions.

Martin also stays active in teaching, as a clinician at both choral and organ events, and has conducted two recordings with the St Paul's choristers.

Aaron Mitchell

Aaron Mitchell, DMA

Assistant Music Director

Aaron Mitchell earned his undergraduate degree in Music Education from Brigham Young University, his Masters in Choral Conducting from Temple, and his doctorate in Choral Conducting from the Music Conservatory at the University of Cincinnati. His doctoral dissertation, “A Conductor’s Guide to Ariel Ramírez’s Misa Criolla” was nominated for the Julius Hereford Award. During the course of his education, he was awarded numerous grants, fellowships and accolades, including Conducting Apprentice at the Berkshire Choral Festival.

Aaron brings a wealth of skills and experience as choral conductor, instructor, clinician, collaborator, administrator and adjudicator, as well as composer and arranger and soloist. His choral and orchestral conducting repertoire includes a mastery of traditional and contemporary styles as proven in performances in China, Sweden, Brazil, Taiwan, and across the US and Canada.

Most recently, he served as Director of Choral Activities at Indiana University–Purdue University in Fort Wayne, Indiana. In addition to becoming SDMC’s new Assistant Music Director, Aaron also serves as the Artistic Director for San Diego Children's Choir and is on the staff at Pacific Ridge School in Carlsbad, CA.

Bryan Verhoye

- Eileen Wingard, SD Jewish Press Heritage, Friday, July 20, 2001

Bryan Verhoye


Bryan Verhoye is a concert pianist who trained at the USC School of Music, the Aspen Music School, and the Peabody Conservatory. He has won first-prize awards from the International Piano Recording Competition and the Carmel Music Society, as well as multiple awards from the Musical Merit Foundation of San Diego. His performance in Carmel of Stravinsky's "Three Movements From Petrouchka" was broadcast on National Public Radio's syndicated Performance Today program.

In addition to being featured numerous times with the San Diego Symphony in both classical and jazz settings, he has appeared every December since 2001 in the Carols By Candlelight concert alongside performers such as Kenny Loggins, America, The Little River Band, Stephen Bishop, Billy Ray Cyrus and Kim Carnes; he has also appeared in concert with Grammy-award winning violinist/composer Mark O'Connor.

Mr. Verhoye has appeared frequently as a solo recitalist, accompanist, and chamber music performer in San Diego and throughout the West Coast. He has performed for the educational outreach programs of the San Diego Chamber Orchestra, the La Jolla Music Society and the Mainly Mozart Festival.

Along with teaching piano, being a published composer and arranger, and being the accompanist for the San Diego Master Chorale since 1998, he is also Music Associate at Point Loma Community Presbyterian Church, and Adjunct Professor of Music at Grossmont College.

Bryan Verhoye

Christopher Allen

Assistant Music Director for Pops

Chris previously worked with SDMC as Assistant Music Director under Martin Wright's leadership, then as Interim Music Director prior to Dr. Gary McKercher being named as Music Director in 2007.

Chris is an immensely talented conductor, accompanist, arranger, and vocal coach. He has extensive experience in preparation and performance of a wide range of choral programming, including musical theater and pops. He currently conducts the SDSU Concert Choir, San Diego Women's Chorus, Pacific Men's Chorale, and Encore Vocal Ensemble. Other local organizations with whom Chris has worked in the past include Lyric Opera San Diego, the San Diego Children's Choir, the San Diego Men's Chorus, the San Diego Symphony Summer Pops Broadway programs, and San Diego Opera, among others.

Chris will also continue to develop the Chorale's current educational outreach program, extending it beyond the elementary school classroom to high school and possibly middle school students.

To promote and preserve choral music through performance, education and diverse community outreach.