Thursday, April 26, 2018     Volume: 19, Issue: 8

Santa Maria Sun / Music

The following article was posted on November 15th, 2012, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 13, Issue 36 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 13, Issue 36

A string salon

The SLO Symphony's Maestro Michael Nowak and symphony members present a classical chamber concert at the Monarch Club


The tradition of chamber music goes back centuries, as does the repertoire for various chamber ensembles. The San Luis Obispo Symphony, used to performing orchestra-hall-type repertoire, still makes time for more intimate chamber concerts, like the program set for the Monarch Club in Nipomo on Nov. 18.

Skilled soloist:
Maestro Michael Nowak selected the music for the “Toast of the Trilogy” concert featuring Beethoven’s Buddies, for which he plays viola.

The concert, titled “Toast of Trilogy,” will feature a string quartet and quintet by two of chamber music’s greatest composers: Beethoven and Mozart. Mozart’s famously named “Dissonance” String Quartet (No. 19) and Beethoven’s powerful String Quintet in C Major will be interpreted by the masterful musicians.

The music was selected for the concert by SLO Symphony Maestro Michael Nowak, who will be putting down his baton in favor of his viola for the two pieces. He’ll be joined by first and second violinist Paul Severtson and Grace Seng, cellist Nancy Nagano, and violist Karen Loewi. Together, the group goes by “Beethoven’s Buddies.”

“We have a regular chamber music series, usually at least three concerts in the season,” said Patty Thayer, marketing director for the SLO Symphony. “Usually one of the events is a wine and music event like this one. It’s a very casual salon-type event.”

The evening will feature a wine reception before the music, when patrons can enjoy a wine tasting, food, and a stroll through the sculpture garden. The event is designed to be more casual than the usual orchestra concert. Preceding each piece will be an introduction and discussion with the musicians.

Chamber music is composed specifically for rooms—or chambers, as they were commonly called. Working in definite contrast to a full symphony, certain composers understood the dimensions of the environment and music. Mozart and Beethoven are considered masters of chamber music for their string quartets alone. Mozart’s “Dissonance” quartet is a favorite chamber work with rich texture and playful melodies. And Beethoven’s quintet, which calls for one more violist than the usual setup, is full of the composer’s brooding passion. The selections will ring out in the fine setting of the Monarch Club in Nipomo.

Raise a toast
The San Luis Obispo Symphony presents “Toast of Trilogy,” featuring wine tasting, food, and live music by Beethoven’s Buddies, featuring selections by Beethoven and Mozart on Nov. 18 at 3 p.m. at the Monarch Club, Trilogy at Monarch Dunes,1645 Trilogy Parkway, Nipomo. Cost is $50. More info: 543-3533 or

“The Monarch Club is gorgeous; it is a beautiful building, and the sculpture garden is lovely,” Thayer said. “It’s a wonderful place to enjoy a concert and a glass of wine on a Sunday afternoon.”

The San Luis Obispo Symphony features several concerts in San Luis Obispo County each season. Though they usually perform at Cal Poly’s Performing Arts Center, they also try to reach into the corners of SLO County, including Nipomo.

“I think we want people to know we are the county symphony,” Thayer said. “By going out and doing smaller community concerts, we are getting out there and making people familiar with us.”

“It’s fun to do these events and engage people on a different level,” she added, “and it’s fun to come into the communities in which they live.”

Feel the frequency

Ian Franklin and Infinite Frequency present a live concert of original rock and Americana music on Nov. 16 at 6:30 p.m. at Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co., 45 Industrial Way, Buellton. More info: 694-2252 or

Sound of the season

The Santa Maria Philharmonic Society presents the concert “Changing Seasons,” featuring works by Gunning, Tchaikovsky, Strauss, and Grofe on Nov. 17 at 7:30 p.m. at Grace Baptist Church, 605 E. McCoy Lane, Santa Maria. More info: 925-0412,, or

Love and music

The husband-and-wife duo of Stacey Earle and Mark Stuart performs on Nov. 17 at 7 p.m. at St. Mark’s-in-the-Valley Episcopal Church, 2901 Nojoqui Ave., Los Olivos. Cost is $20, $15 in advance. More info: 688-4454,, or

Wine down with music

The Addamo Tasting Room and Bistro presents “Wine Down Wednesdays,” featuring live music on Wednesdays from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at 400 E. Clark, Old Orcutt. Free. More info: 937-6400 or

Fun at the 510

The 510 Event Center presents a live blues jam featuring local musicians led by Juan Marquez and Sangria Wednesdays from 7 to 10 p.m. DJ Orlando entertains Thursday nights starting at 10 p.m. (dress code enforced). DJ Orlando also spins for “Margarita Night” every Monday from 9 p.m. to midnight. Saturdays feature an open mic from 4 to 7 p.m., and Saturday nights are Latin night featuring live norteño and banda music. Call for times. The 510 Event Center is at 510 South Broadway, Santa Maria. More info: 928-5510,,, or

Jazz served hot

The Santa Maria Inn presents “A New Twist on an Old Favorite” in the Tap Room featuring performances by Mezcal on Fridays, Mofongo performs the first Saturday of each month, the Sammy Labastida Jazz and Blues Band performs the second Saturday of each month, Louie Ortega performs the third Saturday of each month, and Lawless and Dean perform the fourth Saturday of each month. The shows take place in the Tap Room, Santa Maria Inn, 801 S. Broadway, Santa Maria. More info: 928-7777 or

Maverick music

The Maverick Saloon offers live entertainment, including live country music on Nov. 16 and 17 at 8:45 p.m., followed by “Late Night with guest DJs” at 11:30 p.m. “Concert on the Deck” is Nov. 17 at 3 p.m. at the saloon, 3687 Sagunto St., Santa Ynez. More info: 686-4785 or

Contact Calendar Editor Joe Payne at

Weekly Poll
What should be done to improve conditions at county jails on the Central Coast?

Easier access to healthcare.
Newer facilities.
Funding for more staff.
Meh, they're fine.

| Poll Results