Building Community through Chamber Music
Music in May turns ten this year and takes to the Cabrillo College Samper Recital Hall stage, also performing in classrooms and at a county youth detention facility. Programs are full of alluring melodies, a world premiere, the conductor of Santa Cruz Symphony, collaboration with a San Francisco ballerina and our final tribute to Mim’s longtime friend David Arben.
Festival director Rebecca Jackson will honor her primary advisor and mentor, David Arben (1927-2017), performing a work for solo violin composed in his memory by Polina Nazaykinskaya. Former associate concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra, Arben has visited Santa Cruz several times to be part of the Music in May experience. The 5th Anniversary Season in 2012 honored Arben through a commission by Nazaykinskaya. According to Performing Arts Monterey Bay, through this chamber work “one was forced to bear witness to Arben’s youthful traumatic memories of the Holocaust in the form of a catharsis.”
Saturday’s program will feature Santa Cruz Symphony’s conductor Daniel Stewart, playing viola in Schumann’s beloved Piano Quartet. Kimberly Braylock-Olivier, corps de ballet member of San Francisco Ballet, dances her own choreography to Pärt’s Spiegel Im Spiegel. The epic anchor of the evening’s program is Schoenberg’s Verklarte Nacht. It was the first of its kind; programmatic music written for chamber ensemble, exquisitely crafted based on the words of Richard Dehmel’s poem of the same name.
A modern day reflection of Verklarte Nacht, Sunday afternoon’s program will unveil the newest programmatic music written for chamber ensemble. Also a string sextet, this WORLD PREMIERE by TJ Cole is based on the poem “this is not a love poem” by Anika Narayanan. Also on the concert are Shostakovich’s melancholic 5 Pieces for 2 Violins and a work championed by Johannes Brahms, Dohnanyi’s C minor Piano Quintet.
The roster of musicians is a dynamic and diverse group of new and old friends. We welcome for the first time violist of San Francisco Symphony, Matthew Young, concertmaster of Sarasota Orchestra, Daniel Jordan, and award-winning pianist Sayaka Tanikawa. For a full list of all 11 artist’s biographies, visit: www.musicinmay.org
The heart’s desire of Music in May is bringing its renowned musicians and powerful performances to Santa Cruz County classrooms and other centers serving youth. All performances are offered at no cost. In 2015 a partnership began with Santa Cruz Juvenile Hall, using music to provide at-risk youth healing, hope and harmony. Former assistant division director Jennifer Buesing says, “It’s the most special thing I saw the kids experience at JH. They are truly amazing people, besides musical geniuses.” For our 10th anniversary, our outreach extends beyond May in monthly presentations. In addition, this season’s outreach will extend to dance with classes led by San Francisco Ballerina, Kimberly Olivier.
- Saturday, May 27: Samper Recital Hall, Cabrillo College 7:00pm Pre-concert lecture 8:00pm Concert
- Sunday, May 28: Samper Recital Hall, Cabrillo College 2:00pm Pre-concert lecture 3:00pm Concert
To purchase tickets call 831-479-6154 or visit www.musicinmay.org