Santa Barbara Music Club
P.O. Box 3974
Santa Barbara, CA  93130
(805) 682-6929
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Free Centennial Concert - Santa Barbara Music Club
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   One of the highlights of Santa Barbara Music Club's concerts is the opportunity for audiences to hear great music from a variety of historical periods, with a diversity of musical forms, performed by excellent artists. As part of the library’s Centennial Celebration, this concert features American music spanning the past 100 years, with a special focus on that most American of genres, ragtime.
Pianists Betty Oberacker and Eric Valinsky will open the program with Leonard Bernstein’s Overture to Candide, arranged by Charlie Harmon for piano duo. Premiered in 1956, Candide is an operetta with music composed by Leonard Bernstein, based on the 1759 novella of the same name by Voltaire. While the operetta closed after just 73 performances, the Overture, brilliantly scored and full of energy and lyricism, quickly became a popular concert piece. Charlie Harmon, who was Bernstein’s personal assistant and later his archivist, beautifully captures the energy of the orchestral overture in his arrangement.
   Composer-Pianist Eric Valinsky will perform Magnetic Rag (1914) and Solace (1909) by Scott Joplin, Carmel-by-the-Sea - A Ragtime Postcard (1987) and Forget-Me-Not (1993) by Santa Barbara composer Hal Isbitz, and the premiere of his own Boondawgle - A Cake Walk.
Scott Joplin (1868-1917) was an African-American composer and pianist who achieved fame for his ragtime compositions and was dubbed the "King of Ragtime.” The Magnetic Rag is notable in several respects: it is his last published work and in it Joplin pushed the boundaries of ragtime form, some critics even going so far as to suggest he was trying to merge ragtime elements with classical sonata form. Solace - A Mexican Serenade for Piano is also a musical hybrid, combining elements of the tango and the habañera.
   Composer Hal Isbitz is a classically trained musician who studied composition and music theory with Dr. Ernest Kanitz, then Professor Emeritus at the University of Southern California. A retired computer programmer, Hal began writing ragtime and other syncopated pieces in the mid-1970's. His music has been recorded and performed at ragtime festivals throughout the country. Isbitz’s rags are characterized by a careful attention to counterpoint, memorable melodies, and sophisticated chromatic harmonies.
Eric Valinsky’s Boondawgle, a Cakewalk (2017) is adapted from the incidental music he wrote for The Boondawgle Estate, a play by Peter McDonough, produced last fall by DramaDogs. The piece is expressive of sentimentality, with a nod to the absurdity of life and to Brahms. A native Manhattanite, Valinsky earned his DMA in music composition from Columbia University. He is currently Music Director for the American Dance & Music Performance Group and moonlights as founder and partner of Inlineos LLC, a strategic Internet consulting company. He is President of the Santa Barbara Music Club Board of Directors.
   Pianist Leslie Hogan will perform Marjorie Merryman’s Dog Day Rag (1997) and William Bolcom’s Contentment - A Rag (2015). Marjorie Merryman’s Dog Day Rag was commissioned by pianist Virginia Eskin in 1997, for her ragtime recording project Spring Beauties. According to the composer, “The title refers to the steamy New England summer days when the piece was written, perhaps inspiring some of the languid but restless chromaticism that flows through the work.” Merryman teaches composition at Manhattan School of Music, where she also served as Provost and Senior Vice President until 2017. National Medal of Arts, Pulitzer Prize, and Grammy Award-winner William Bolcom is an American composer of chamber, operatic, vocal, choral, cabaret, ragtime, and symphonic music. His Graceful Ghost rag is perhaps the best-loved work in the ragtime revival. Dedicated to his wife, the singer Joan Morris, Contentment-A Rag, composed in 2015 and premiered by Tom Brier at the 2015 West Coast Ragtime Festival in Sacramento, California, is a lyrical slow drag.
Flutist Adriane Hill and pianist Christopher Davis will conclude the program with Aaron Copland’s Duo (1971). Musically speaking, the Duo looks both back, to Copland’s distinctive folk-style ballets of the 1940s and the jazz inflections of some works from the 1920s; but also forward—there are elements of it that are not what the listener expects, if that listener isn’t familiar with Copland’s more challenging works.
   Event Category & Type:   Music - Classical ( Concerts, Shows & Performances)

   Santa Barbara Public Library - Faulkner Gallery, 40 E Anapamu Street, Santa Barbara, CA  93101

   Admission:  FREE to All
   Phone:  (619) 405-3218
   Internet:  Website

   This event is ..... Open to the Public, Indoor, Handicapped Accessible, NON Smoking, NO Cell Phones & Pagers, NO Cameras or Recording, All Welcome



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