Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music is coming up in August with something for everyone in the community. This highly respected cultural organization has strived to include more and more free family programming to its already brimming two weeks of activities built around new music for orchestra.


Beginning on Sunday evening, July 30th, the downtown Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium becomes the hub of festivities that include Open Orchestra Rehearsals, conducted by new Music Director Cristian Măcelaru. The rehearsals provide a fascinating opportunity to watch the creative process as these 70 orchestra players, composers-in-residence, and conductor, bring the works to life. Visitors are welcomed to attend the rehearsals, arriving and departing at their leisure, so long as they’re quiet and respectful of the working environment for these professional musicians. The full schedule is online at www.cabrillomusic.org, and includes rehearsals in the morning, afternoon, and evening. A great way to introduce curious young people to the orchestra, it is also a luxurious musical escape for parents sneaking in a refreshing break from the hectic pace of family life.


With the annual Church Street Fair on Saturday and Sunday, August 5 and 6, the Festival has created two full days of educational and artful activities specifically designed for the whole family, including youngsters of all ages. This popular event takes place on Church Street outside the Civic Auditorium and celebrates Santa Cruz’s vibrant cultural scene with non-stop performances from diverse global traditions. The line-up includes young performers from Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre, Raizes Do Brasil, and El Sistema Santa Cruz; plus performances by Desert Dream Dance (Middle East), Coastal Prairie Band (American folk), The Fire (Scotland), Papiba & Friends (Brazil), Watsonville Taiko (Japan), Broken English and Flor de Cana (Carribean/Latin), Post Street Rhythm Peddlers (New Orleans Brass), Shakti Bhakti (India), and more.


Vendors will fill the tree-lined streets with delicious fare from local food purveyors, vintners and brewers, and the fine art and crafts of regional artists and artisans. Free activities for children include hands-on workshops in the Creativity Tent for Kids, conducted by professional artists and instructors and including a broad range of mediums from Music Together sessions with MusicalMe to printmaking, collaging, water coloring and weaving.


“Cabrillo Festival seeks to provide enduring inspiration to all members of our community,” said Ellen Primack, Executive Director of the Cabrillo Festival, “and there really is no better way to ignite a young person’s imagination than to introduce them to the arts and the creative process.”


On Sunday, August 6, at 1pm, the Cabrillo Festival will present its annual Free Family Concert. It begins with a rousing percussion demonstration and a guided Tour of the Orchestra that brings kids up-close and personal with the musicians and their instruments, in small groups in and around the Civic Auditorium. When the audience returns to the hall they will see the full orchestra perform composer Michael Gandolfi’s Pinocchio’s Adventures in Funland. Music Director Cristian Măcelaru will play the role of narrator, and Maestra Gemma New will conduct the Festival Orchestra. The piece recounts the adventures of Geppetto’s famously prevaricating marionette, in fifteen short scenes designed to entertain and educate young audiences by introducing them to the riches of concert music.


From the youngest members of our community, to high school students, to aspiring professional musicians, and to our elder generations, Cabrillo Festival has created programs to engage anyone and everyone at all different levels of participation and involvement. Community members are invited to explore the schedule at cabrillomusic.org or churchstreetfair.org, or to visit the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium for tickets and information.

Last Updated on Monday, 31 July 2017 23:46
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