Whittier Community Arts Coalition


The City of Whittier believes that it is important to have public art that is exceptional and enhances the beauty of the community. This is important because it will increase the understanding and enjoyment of public art by Whittier residents. In an effort to successfully pool the resources of the various cultural arts organizations in our City, the City of Whittier Cultural Arts Commission formed the Community Arts Coalition in June 2001. The main goal of the group was to create a forum, under the umbrella of the Commission, for these arts groups to meet and get to know each other. exchange ideas and provide mutual assistance in perpetuating the arts in our Community.

Thus far, the Coalition, made up of 13 local organizations, has met to tackle issues such as networking, promoting events via the internet, reaching out to minority groups, publicity and marketing, creating a master calendar and exploring cultural arts programs in nearby cities. Guest speakers have included Victor Ledesma of the Whittier Latino Coalition, Pete Gomez of the Hispanic Outreach Taskforce, Bill Bell of the Daily News, Alex Moisa of Friends of Pio Pico and Annette Johnson of the City of Pico Rivera.

Chorale Bel Canto (www.choralebelcanto.org)
Chorale Bel Canto is a community-based masterworks chorale whose mission is to present quality musical programming for the cultural benefit of the community as well as to provide a demanding and satisfying artistic outlet for qualified singers.

Hillcrest Festival of Fine Arts
The Annual Hillcrest Festival of Fine Arts showcases the arts on the last weekend in February. The festival is located at 2000 West Road in La Habra Heights, near the border of Whittier and La Habra Heights. Admission and parking are free. Hours are 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 11:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sunday. Talented artists from Southern California exhibit and sell an extensive variety of art, including watercolor, mixed media, and oil paintings, pottery, jewelry, ceramics, hand-woven clothing, stained glass, blown glass, sculptures, and photography. During the 3-day event, many artists will also be demonstrating their skills. In addition, the festival offers children’s art workshops, musical entertainment, the popular Arts & Crafts Boutique, and the Starving Artist Café. The first festival, held in 1961, was created as a free community service outreach project providing a high quality festival celebrating all the arts. It has grown over the years through the hard work of church volunteers and friends who contribute thousands of hours in organizing, coordinating, and hosting the weekend event.

New Century Singers
A 40 voice women’s chorus, one in the state-wide California Women’s Chorus, Inc. organization, is open to women of all ages in the Greater Whittier Area who enjoy singing and performing popular show tunes, old standards, classical and religious music, with no auditions required. Rehearsals, under the direction of Judy Kertes, are on Wednesday mornings or Sunday evenings.

Rio Hondo Symphony (http://www.riohondosymphony.org)
Four special Guest Conductors will lead the Rio Hondo Symphony during its exciting 76th season of four ADMISSION-FREE concerts at 3 p.m. Sundays at the Vic Lopez Auditorium at Whittier High School.  The “Symphonic Landscapes” concert September 28, 2008, will be conducted by Brian Asher Alhedeff.  “Those Romantic Germans” set for November 2, 2008,  will be conducted by Hector Salazar.  “An American Rhapsody” will be conducted by Kimo Furumoto March 1, 2009, and the “76th Finale” May 3, 2009, will be conducted by Olivia Tsui.  For more details call 562.698.8626 or visit our web site.

Shannon Center for the Performing Arts (www.shannoncenter.org)
The mission of the Ruth B. Shannon Center for the Performing Arts is two-fold. First, to provide the highest quality, service oriented, large-group meeting and entertainment facility with full support services to Whittier College students, faculty, staff and administration. Secondly, the Shannon Center serves as the most visible gateway to Whittier College campus for the general public, and as such strives to provide the highest quality programming in a variety of styles to attract and satisfy a culturally diverse population with an eye toward enhancing the image, visibility and viability of the College.

Whittier Art Gallery & Association (www.whittierartgallery.org)
The Whittier Art Gallery has a unique collection of works by local artists, who are professionals, amateurs and students of all ages. We feature exhibitions and jurored competitions in a variety of media’s including oil, watercolor and acrylic paintings, as well as drawings, sculpture and jewelry. The Gallery is available to rent for both members and non-members on an occasional or monthly basis. Regular monthly meetings are held the second Monday of each month, September through June. Meetings begin at 7:30 with a program featuring a guest artist. Refreshments are served and the public is always welcome. We also offer summer art classes for children. Whittier Art Association membership is available.

Whittier Choralaires (www.choralaires.org)
The Whittier Chapter of the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America, Inc. is a fraternity of male singers of all ages who share the desire of communicating the love and joy of the musical style know as barbershop harmony. The Whittier Chapter will provide for its members a positive environment which embraces the Society mission and vision, and maintains as its primary goal the production of outstanding Barbershop performances built from a foundation of musical excellence in the Barbershop art form.

Whittier Community Theatre (www.whittiercommunitytheatre.com)
The Whittier Community Theatre was formed in 1922 and has been in continuous operation for 81 years - making them the oldest non-profit theatre west of the Mississippi! Their mission is to provide outlets for local talents with opportunities for learning development and performing before live audiences; to provide development of production and artistic skills for local directors and producers; and to provide quality live theatre at nominal prices for our audiences.

Whittier Cultural Arts Foundation (WCAF)
The Whittier Cultural Arts Foundation is the non-profit fundraising arm of the Cultural Arts Commission created to advocate and support the availability and accessibility of the visual and performing arts to the greater Whittier community. Founded in 1991, the Foundation raises funds (1) to incorporate the arts in all public and private sectors, (2) to provide a network of support and supporters for the arts, (3) to encourage and assist schools in making the arts a part of every student’s experience, (4) to promote growth in the arts through increased community involvement and support, and (5) to appreciate the arts and nurture the artists. The Foundation raises monies largely from membership dues, grants and fundraisers. Everyone is welcome to become a member.

Whittier Historical Society (www.whittiermuseum.org)
The Whittier Historical Society has designated the following as its mission:

  • Discover, collect, preserve, and display objects, documents, photographs, literary or artistic works, and other articles or materials which may establish or illustrate the history of Whittier, the Whittier area, and the State of California.
  • Maintain the Whittier Museum and the Museum's Collections for the education and enjoyment of the general public, as well as for research.
  • Supervise the operation and maintenance of the Bailey House in conjunction with the City of Whittier.
  • Educate the community in preserving structures and sites in the Whittier area having historical significance.
  • Publish and disseminate information to promote appreciation and enjoyment of the above by the widest possible number of residents of the Whittier area and its environs.

Whittier Rose Parade Float Committee (www.whittierrosefloat.com)
Whittier sponsored a float for the 2005 Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade. The Committee encouraged citizens to join them and neighboring businesses in supporting the float, designed by local artist Raul Rodriguez and Larry Crain.