Teraji: Secret cultural event of the season

The Santa Ana Winds has been performing for 15 years. Eric Siverson on the horn, Myrna Breeze on the bassoon, Steve Knapp on the oboe, Curt Moran on the flute and Susan Biskeborn plays the clarinet.

What if they gave a free concert series and no one came? Well, not no one, but not as many as we would have hoped would come out in enthusiastic support of such an excellent showcase of South Valley talent. 
I hear that the Santa Ana Winds are really hot, and hopefully, when the woodwind quintet takes the stage for the final concert of the Musi-Kaleidoscope series on Saturday afternoon, June 9, the room will be packed.
Gilroy is a community rich in local talent, and rich in the arts. We don’t need to spend our hard-earned gas dollars driving all the way to San Jose for professional caliber entertainment, and this recent spring concert series has been  proof of that.
But getting the word out and marshaling support to fill a room that seats 100 can be a huge challenge. 
“Musi-Kaleidoscope,” a five-program series showcasing professional musicians from the South Valley is a joint project of the United Methodist Church and the Music Academy, presenting local professional musicians sharing their favorite music in an educational family-friendly format since March and it will conclude with the Santa Ana Winds.
The Santa Ana Winds has been performing for 15 years. Curt Moran, flute, Steve Knapp, oboe and Susan Biskeborn, clarinet, are all from Hollister; Eric Siverson on horn is from Gilroy, and Myrna Breeze on bassoon hails from Prunedale.
The group has performed numerous times on the Gavilan College Choir programs and with “An Evening of Classics.” They love to play for weddings and entertain at receptions or anywhere a little music can add some joy. The program will contain a varied repertoire from classical to modern with a Mozart Divertimento, Ancient Hungarian Dances, and selections by American composers, William Grant Still, Denes Agay, and Scott Joplin.
The Sorella String Quartet was the first group to kick off the music series on March 17 and featured a world premiere piece called, “Romantic Fugue,” by Mark R. Alfenito. Thirty people – and one dog – found it to be a great way to spend a stormy St. Patrick’s Day.
Pianist Candace Fazzio doubled the audience on April 7 in the most successful entertainment of the series so far when she presented a live piano accompaniment for the silent film classic, “The Kid Brother,” featuring Harold Lloyd.
The third program of the five-concert series took place on April 28, featuring brass instruments with the Sobrato Brass Quintet. Members have played together for 12 years. Their style ranges from 1600’s classical to reggae rhythms, from “Fanfare” to “Surfside.” Yep, that’s right, they played surf music on the tuba, trumpet, euphonium, and French horn at their recent concert in Gilroy, an all out rollicking number that included a full set of drums. I could see the surfers riding the waves across the stage in my mind. The challenge of playing such a range of music on brass instruments is a real workout, or as trumpet player Al Tarasco put it, “It spares no one.” 
The fourth program on May 19 returned to the keyboard with ragtime piano duo artists, Jack and Chris Bradshaw along with Robyn Truitt and Steve Drivon as the Ragnolia Ragtette on tuba and percussion. The Bradshaws have played all the major festivals in 11 states, Hungary, and Canada.
The concert was a collaborative effort benefiting the Christopher High Drama Club. Director Dr. Kate Booth brought students to perform during intermission, demonstrating very lively improv routines, such as Freeze Tag, in which the young actors must freeze immediately when the director calls out, “Freeze!” and the next actor must come forward and pick up in exactly the position where the last actor left off.     
The Santa Ana Winds will begin to blow on June 9 at 2 p.m. in the United Methodist Church sanctuary at 7600 Church Street located on the corner of Church and Fourth streets. Admission is free, but donations are welcomed, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting outreach efforts to help the poorest members of our community.
For more information, contact The Music Academy at 408-848-1064 or at [email protected]

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