In the News, Raves and Reviews

(Sept. 25, 2019) Mercury News East Bay Times
East Bay Times - Sept. 25, 2019

(Nov. 30, 2018) The Mercury News
Mercury News - Nov. 30, 2018

(Nov. 30, 2018) The Sunnyvale Sun
Sunnyvale Sun - Nov. 30, 2018

(Sept. 23, 2017) The Daily News :Daily News - Sept. 23, 2017
Click here for full pdf view

(Sept. 13, 2017) The Los Altos Town Crier
Los Altos Town Crier - Sept. 13, 2017

(Mar. 20, 2015) The Daily News :"Key to Success for California Pops" & Mar. 29th "Swing Time!" Big Band Show.
Written by John Orr. Click here for full 2 page pdf view

The Daily News California Pops Key to Success

(Nov. 14, 2014) in the Daily Post :"Orchestra Resurrects hits from the 1920s" California Pops Great Gatsby Show.
written by Adrienne Harris with Photos by Sam Huie. Click for full jpg view

California Pops Great Gatsby Music of the 1920s

(Mar. 19, 2013) in the Daily News California Pops Harp Flash Mob:"When Irish harps are playin'" California Pops Big Band Show.
written by Jeoff Sheau with Photos by Sam Huie. Click for full pdf view

California Pops Harp Flash Mob

(Dec. 7, 2012) in Palo Alto Weekly: "They're with the (big) band" California Pops Holiday Show Dec 16th.
written by Rebecca Wallace with Photos by Sam Huie. Click for full pdf view

Embarcadero Media (Palo Alto Weekly Feature Story)

(Feb. 12, 2010) in FUSION Daily News: Radio Days: Cal Pops plans '30s style fun

Palo Alto Daily Header Feb 4, 2009

California Pops Thrills with Movie Music
Review by Columnist John Orr of the Palo Alto Daily

Carol Channing is back in Los Gatos Spotlight
Article by Heather Zimmerman, March 2009 of the Los Gatos Weekender

The California Pops in partnership with the Dr. Carol Channing & Harry Kullijian Foundation for the Arts to help rebuild California School's music and the arts education programs.

The 60-piece California Pops Orchestra joined forces with Miss Channing last year to help bring Music and the Arts back to California's public schools. This March 15th, 2009 show is the Northern California kick-off to that effort and proceeds benefit the Dr. Carol Channing and Harry Kullijian Foundation for the Arts and their partners, the California Pops Orchestra.

Facinating Rhythm

California Pops Orchestra Gershwin & Friends Cover Story
October 19, 2007 by Rebecca Wallace

California Pops featured Gershwin pianist carries a torch
for music of the '20s,'30s Music and slide show

17th annual Best of Competition - Winner of the Best of Local Bands
- Palo Alto Weekly 2002 Reader Poll "Simply the best!"

Whether it's Broadway hits, movie tunes or breezy classics that get your toe tapping, the Peninsula Pops Orchestra is sure to delight, according to readers. Conducted by maestro Kim Venaas, the nonprofit group of musicians of all ages from throughout the Bay Area specializes in captivating the whole family.

"Broadway on the Peninsula"
Gentry Magazine June 2007, California Pops Auxiliary Gala

Pat Gregory Chairperson and Barbara Glynn

"Ladies and gents, start your vacuums"

Review of the Pops "Comedy, Cartoons and Other Mayhem" Show.
By S.L. Wykes, Mercury News

"The Pops' slightly oddball take on concertizing means the program will include the Grand, Grand Overture for Three Vacuum Cleaners, Floor Polisher and Hose Pipe." In deference to contemporary feelings, a starter pistol will be substituted for composer Sir Malcolm Arnold's original inclusion of four rifles."

Palo Alto Weekly - Saviors of Song May 2005 by Rebecca Wallace

California Pops Orchestra rescues historic music.
"A mission to save printed music dating back as far as 80, 90, 100 years. They've been spurred by cash-strapped school music libraries shrinking, elderly collectors passing away, and the general passage of time."


A Salute to Oscar - Peninsula Pops celebrates Academy Award-winning music
Publication Date: Friday, March 05, 2004 by Marge Speidel
Click above for the full article.

Audience Raves

"The California Pops Orchestra treats the Great American Songbook as it should be treated - with excellent musicianship, clear affection, and the respect these pop music classics deserve." Leigh Weimers, KLIV/Gentry Magazine

"The California Pops gives new meaning and vitality to the popular music of 20th Century America. The ensemble magically restores life to a bygone age." John Stanley former host of KTVU (Creature Features)

"I heartily endorse the California Pops Orchestra's rescue of historic American popular music. Let's all get behind the "Save the Music" project". John Rothman, KGO Radio

"The California Pops - Spectacular music!" - John Orr, Palo Alto Daily

"Fun for the musicians as well as the audience" - Marge Speidel, Palo Alto Weekly

"Who knew, besides musicians, that music could be so fun?" - A. Guerra

"Expect the unexpected! Surprises from Big Band and Broadway Musicals to Jazz and movie hits plus fun and laughs. A hoot!" - Vic Befera

"An exhilarating experience!" P. Yardner

"Best Bargain on the Peninsula!" M. Carey

"Live music, variety - great quality!" D. LaPoint

"Love the Pops" L. Stone

"The California Pops Orchestra is a unique institution. Over the entire West Coast Area, it is the only orchestra of its kind. Whereas this singularity might seem surprising, the orchestra represents a vital commitment to an important musical genre. It presents fascinating creative opportunities for its musicians and for the community at large. The community can benefit from greater exposure to the pops context, in terms of both education and entertainment."
Peter G. Neumann
, Principal Scientist, SRI

"This is Great!" A. Allport

"Great fun. Best entertainment." H.D. Moor

"A surprising feature of California Pops audiences is the wide age span -- small children, young people, adults, and a sizable group of seniors. And each age group is equally enthralled at the fast-moving, highly professional presentations! The orchestra itself includes talented high school kids to highly talented seniors, playing together in mutual appreciation. Seldom seen in modern America -- and how refreshing! Not "family values" as preached from the pulpit or exalted by the politicians, but grass roots family togetherness, enjoyable wholesome good times bridging the generations." - Mil Pribble

"Keep up the good work!" D. Filippini

"Variety/Informal/Fun!" J. Wolfram

"More performances please! Very enjoyable." L. Shoaf

"Keep up the great performances & jokes. Great entertainment and educational, too!" M. Vaon

"Very talented orchestra!! Just gets better & better." Anonymous

"Great music! Enjoyed the show - keep up the good work!" S. Dewalt

"I have never had so much fun making music. I look forward to every rehearsal to get together with other musicians who are also having great fun and are dedicated to their art. Maestro Venaas is both inspiring and knowledgeable in all types of music so as players we are constantly learning from him. We are lucky to have a group like this in our area." - Chin Beckmann

Top 10 Reasons Why I Love the California Pops - by Chin Beckmann
1. Not only are they accomplished musicians, they are also accomplished and talented in other areas.
2. Love the fancy dresses--it's like going to the Oscars, but a lot less traffic.
3. All the funny jokes we get to hear.
4. It's not bad to be engulfed in "Happy Music" for a couple of hours.
5. Kim's endless reservoir of creativeness. What's he going to do next?
6. It's music the whole family can enjoy.
7. It's classy but not snooty.
8. Love the audience participation.
9. We get to see unusual instruments featured such as vacuums and garden hose.
10. No two shows are the same.