Friday, May 27 , 2016, 9:43 pm | Fair 57º

Showcasing Local Musicians, CAMA Women’s Board Fundraiser a True ‘Class Act’

Fundraiser at Wine Cask supports the organization's music education programs in Santa Barbara schools and concerts at the Granada and Lobero

By Melissa Walker, Noozhawk iSociety Columnist | @NoozhawkSociety |

The Community Arts Music Association (CAMA) is now in its 95th concert season, and the Women’s Board proudly hosted “A Class Act” at the Wine Cask Restaurant on Sunday to support CAMA’s music education program in Santa Barbara schools and concerts at the Granada and Lobero theaters.

The Wine Cask welcomed 125 guests gathered in support of this community treasure, enjoying wines courtesy of Margerum Wine Co. and a light buffet.

“The purpose today is to raise funds for CAMA, and we also want to emphasize here local musicians,” said Ellen Parton, a member of the Women’s Board for three years. “So that’s why the music program is here, and CAMA also supports a docents-led program in the schools with David Malvinni.”

A range of entertainment on this sunlit afternoon included the Siloam Quartet with Isaac Kay, Lalia Mangione, Rebecca Shasberger and Samantha Wilson, who were also joined in the Wine Cask Courtyard by the San Marcos High School Madrigal Singers under the direction of Carolyn Teraoka-Brady.

Taraoke-Brady is in her 13th year teaching vocal music at San Marcos, including four choirs, and she teaches music for the spring musical Les Miserables, coming up on the first two weekends in May at San Marcos auditorium.

“This group is our top group, the Madrigal Singers. They’ve performed at Carneige Hall and all over. They’ve done really well in the past 10 years,” Teraoka-Brady said. “This year we’re really fortunate to go to Italy and sing in a special festival and do a lot of touring in June, starting in Venice, where we’ll sing at St. Mark’s, and then going to Florence and Rome. And we end by singing for a festival, and we sing at the Vatican for a Mass. It’s all pretty overwhelming."

Teraoka-Brady shared with Noozhawk that the funding needed for the trip to Italy is approaching its goal.

“We’ve had to raise $181,000, in so many different ways, and we’re now about $25,000 to the end between parent donations and community donations and concerts and all the different ways you raise money,” she said.

Debbie Geremia, left, Catherine Leffler and Mary Garton. (Melissa Walker / Noozhawk photo)

Inside the restaurant on the Wine Cask stage, Renee Hamaty accompanied Santa Barbara’s Three Tenors — Benjamin Brecher, Gary Smith and Tyler Thompson — for a captivating performance.

A live auction of seven exclusive items with auctioneer Steven Epstein followed, including lunch and wine tasting for six people at Brander Vineyard, a cocktail party for 30 people on the fourth floor of the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum and a collector’s box of wines from Far Niente Winery.

Other key programs that CAMA offers to the community include the International Series and Masterseries concerts and music education programs that reach 1,500 elementary, junior and high school students in Santa Barbara County.

The CAMA International Series showcases an amazing lineup of recitals and world-class orchestra by some of the world’s finest classical musicians at concerts held at the Granada Theatre with an upcoming performance from the Los Angeles Philharmonic on May 4. Conductor Gustavo Dudamel with Emanuel Ax on piano will perform pieces from Johannes Brahms and Andrew Norman.

The Masterseries concerts, established in 1982, host classical recitals at the Lobero Theatre and feature an eclectic mix of instrumental soloists and outstanding chamber music performed by internationally acclaimed musicians, such as two of the world’s top pianists, Stephen Hough in recital this Tuesday, April 8, and Richard Goode in recital on May 14.

The afternoon’s featured guest was Dr. David Malvinni, creator CAMA’s Music Matters, where guests were invited to view examples used in local classrooms at a special education table displaying the PowerPoint presentations.

CAMA’s extensive music educational programs, such as Music Matters now in its 11th year, reach students in fourth through sixth grade from dozens of local elementary schools. The three-year, 24-unit curriculum program, "A Classical Music Journey for Young People," combines the study of folk and classical music tradition with performances by musicians demonstrating these traditions at school assemblies.

The flagship program was created by consultant musicologist Dr. David Malvinni and is also comprised of CAMA docents trained by Malvinni.

Noozhawk iSociety columnist Melissa Walker can be reached at [email protected]. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkSociety, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

The San Marcos High School Madrigal Singers perform for guests at the CAMA Women's Board fundraiser. (Melissa Walker / Noozhawk photo)

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