Conductor Maurice Allard of the Orange County Master Chorale, one of the county's oldest performing arts groups, has resigned in an apparent artistic dispute with the chorale's board of directors.
Donna Bunce, manager of the chorale, said Saturday that Allard quit Friday as music director because of differences over the status of The Californians, an ensemble within the chorale.
In recent months, The Californians and their lighter, more contemporary show have become an increasingly important facet of the chorale's program. But Allard, who does not conduct The Californians, was reportedly concerned about the importance placed on the ensemble.
Allard met with the board Wednesday and again Thursday, but the two sides were unable to resolve their differences. Friday morning, Allard, who has been the chorale's conductor since 1978, submitted his resignation.