Well, the Music Academy of the West is gearing up for another wonderful year. For eight weeks in the summer, from June 20th to the 13th of August, Santa Barbara is the home of a group of exceptionally gifted classically trained young musicians from around the world. Here on a full scholarship, they work intensively with faculty, guest artists and each other in one of five different programs: instrumental, solo piano, collaborative piano, vocal piano and voice. And we get to see and hear them learn and perform in over a hundred events and recitals in the Music Festival! Many are free.
With five different guest conductors, the orchestral offerings are particularly strong this year. Choose from the intimate chamber orchestra pieces to Beethoven's Fourth. Maybe Strauss, Stravinsky, or Mahler has more appeal. The first orchestral event is June 25th. Key opera and vocal events this year are the Opera Showcase, July 16 and 18; the Marilyn Horn Song Competition July 23rd and Rossini's Barber of Seville; performances August 5th and 7th at the Granada.
Tip for locals and visiting parents: Try attending a MasterClass on your favorite instrument, piano, brass, string, percussion or wind. Watching the students learn can open up a whole new way of listening and learning for you. Many are free, others have a minimal charge.
If a fine Santa Barbara Bed and Breakfast sounds like the accommodation you need while visiting the Festival, give us a call, we'd love to see you. 800-341-2284.
Deborah Gentry, Innkeeper Bath Street Inn