“As the Music Academy of the West (MAW) heads into a second historic collaboration with a major international symphony orchestra—this time it’s the London Symphony—the school’s Academy Festival Orchestra will be stepping up its game,” writes Charles Donelan in Wednesday’s (5/30) Santa Barbara Independent (CA). “The four-concert orchestral series … will challenge the young musicians not only with … works … such as Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6, ‘Pastoral,’ but also with new music … five complex programs in seven weeks under four different conductors…. For the fellows of the Music Academy, this kind of rigor and intensity is exactly why they chose to come to Santa Barbara. Speaking with Patrick Posey, the MAW’s vice president of artistic planning and educational operations, one gets a sense of both the broad scope and the practical aspects of … choosing and organizing these programs…. Alongside Sibelius 5, conducted by Larry Rachleff, the AFO will perform the West Coast premiere of Pulitzer Prize winner Caroline Shaw’s violin concerto Lo.… The season’s welcome focus on women composers and conductors reaches its conclusion on July 21, when [Elim] Chan takes the podium to conduct … a West Coast premiere by Elizabeth Ogonek, Sleep and Unremembrance.”

Posted May 30, 2018