Director - Vocal Jazz
Just Jazz & House Blend
Julie Lawson is an accomplished pianist who earned her masters degree in piano performance from Cal State Northridge. She accompanied the Cal Arts Chorus and Voices of the Canyons for five years before becoming the choral director at College of the Canyons in the Spring of 1996. Since the Fall of 1997, Ms. Lawson has added four more choirs to the schedule of classes at COC, offering something for everyone's musical tastes. In the Fall of 1997, she formed the College of the Canyons Chamber Singers, and in the Fall of 1998, she started “Les Chanteuses”, her women's choir. “Just Jazz” was added in the Fall of 2002 and her second vocal jazz ensemble, “House Blend,” in the Fall of 2011. She conducts “Les Chanteuses”, “House Blend”, and the award winning “Just Jazz,” and also teaches fundamentals of music and the keyboard classes. She served as the president of the Santa Clarita Choral Educators Association for two years and now continues as an active member of the association.
Ms. Lawson has served as an Assistant Conductor for the First Presbyterian Church in Newhall. She has worked extensively with Dr. Nick Strimple, a well-respected choral conductor and composer in the Los Angeles area. She was the Associate Director of the Choral Society of Southern California for eight years and toured through England and the Netherlands with the group in the summer of 1999. She toured Israel in 1998 as the accompanist for the Zimriyah Chorale. Her weekends are now devoted to being the full-time organist at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Newhall, California.
Ms. Lawson has attended master classes in choral conducting with Rodney Eichenberger, Florida State University Professor Emeritus, and with Michael Shani, conductor of the Tel Aviv Chamber Choir. She has attended jazz workshops at the University of North Texas, where she studied jazz theory, arranging, ensemble and solo jazz technique with Paris Rutherford, Jeremy Fox and Rosana Eckert. She has also studied under the tutelage of jazz giants Phil Mattson, Jennifer Barnes and Michele Weir.