Desiree La Vertu

Director of Choral Music, Music

Desiree La Vertu is a highly accomplished conductor, soloist, and voice teacher in the greater Los Angeles area.


  • Office: Booth 220
  • Email: lavertu@oxy.edu
  • Phone: (323) 259-1333

Education: B.Mus., CSU Fullerton; M.M. University of Nevada, Reno

La Vertu has been conducting at Caltech since 1999, when she began directing the Women's Glee Club and co-directing the Glee Club at Occidental. She took over the additional directorship of the Men's Glee Club in 2006. She was appointed director of the Occidental College Glee Club in 2008. Previously, she was on the voice faculty of Chapman University and the summer graduate program at Cal State L.A. She is one of the solo vocal coordinators and is on the choral-vocal faculty of the Idyllwild Arts Summer Program festival choir.

As a soprano, La Vertu specializes in the oratorio repertoire, and made her Walt Disney Concert Hall debut in 2005 as soprano soloist in Poulenc's Gloria. Other solo performances include Vaughan Williams' Dona Nobis Pacem at Disney Hall, Brahms' Ein Deutches Requiem, Handel's Messiah, Mozart's Requiem, Bach's Magnificat, and Respighi's Laud to the Nativity. She was a longtime member of the Donald Brinegar Singers, and was a founding member of the female a capella quartet Diva Complex.

Initially trained as a pianist, her bachelor of music is in accompanying from Cal State Fullerton, and she received her master of music in choral and vocal studies from the University of Nevada, Reno, where she studied with Bruce Mayhall and Donald Brinegar.