Sign Up Today For OjaiU 2015 – Launching In The Spring

OjaiUlogo1080x87OjaiU 2015 will be a “history of the world according to percussion”, as told by Steven Schick. Rather than simply a history of percussion or a series of demonstrations, the three-session class will explore the history and relationship between percussion and culture, and the wider world around us. Using demonstrations from Steven, clips from percussive sounds found in everyday life, and more, OjaiU 2015 will explore fundamental questions of how our notions of sound, rhythm, and music are related to the culture around it and how these things reflect and influence the world around us.

OjaiU is a series of free courses designed to help audiences “listen smarter” and enable them to gain deeper insight into music. Far from being simply “program notes,” OjaiU is built around the ideas that animate the thinking behind a Festival like Ojai, featuring observations by artists, critics, and experts.

OjaiU starts in spring 2015, sign up below!
Read about and revisit OjaiU 2013 >>

 

 

 

Thank You For A Successful Holiday Home Look In & Marketplace!

Thank you to all the attendees, homeowners, designers, volunteers, and vendors for helping to make this year’s Holiday Home Look In and Marketplace a success! With perfect weather, beautiful homes, and the tireless cheer of the Women’s Committee, we couldn’t have asked for a better weekend. We hope to see you again next year!

We’re still getting together photos, but check out a few we managed to grab in between shuttles…

 

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View the 69th Festival Schedule for June 10-14, 2015

7.11.13Percussionists are different. Their musical world has no fixed boundaries; there is no limit to the instruments they play and the sounds they make. There are no pretentious barriers between nature and artifice, no strictures on performing indoors or out. Their precursors reach back to the dawn of time and members of their guild are found in every culture. Hand a percussionist a random rock or the most exquisitely forged gong and he or she will make it speak, sometimes with breathtaking virtuosity born of the simplest gestures by which we interact, though touch, with our material world. So what does it mean that Ojai’s 2015 music director is a percussionist? Quite a lot if that percussionist is Steven Schick.

No one has done more to champion, interpret, and expand the repertory of contemporary percussion music than Steven Schick. Not only has he mastered the entire solo repertory – and more than doubled its size through commissions – but as a conductor, educator, and author he has deepened our understanding of the role of percussion in music’s past, present, and future. More importantly, as an artist of broad interests and deep convictions he has explored cultural issues well beyond the already boundless frontiers of his chosen specialization.

To a percussionist’s ear music begins with rhythm, color, and gesture and these are the elements that form the nexus of the diverse works and decidedly international array of composers of this all 20th- and 21st-century festival. Naturally, we’ll hear Steven Schick perform classics of the solo percussion repertory – compositions by Stockhausen, Xenakis, and Globokar, as well as more recent compositions by David Lang and Kaija Saariaho, and the American premiere of Roland Auzet’s staging of Kurt Schwitter’s Dadist masterpiece, Ursonate. But Steve will also conduct ICE (International Contemporary Ensemble), red fish blue fish, Renga, and musicians from CalArts, groups with which he is closely identified, in a broad array of ensemble works of varied scorings, including the West Coast premiere of John Luther Adams’ Sila. Among the distinguished soloists is cellist Maya Beiser playing pieces by Osvaldo Golijov, Michael Harrison, and Chinary Ung.

Other highlights are a sunrise performance of Morton Feldman’s For Philip Guston in which Steve is joined by flutist Claire Chase and pianist Sarah Rothenberg, Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Pipa featuring Wu Man, and Messiaen’s Vision de l’amen with pianists Gloria Cheng and Vicki Ray. This year’s “old timers” include Copland, Chavez, Ginastera, and Varèse, all with scores new to Ojai, save one late-night chestnut: Appalachian Spring.

2015 marks the beginning of a three-year celebration of Ojai’s roots in Southern California, where open exploration and cross-cultural dialogue are written into the DNA. It is therefore especially apt that this festival opens with a Wednesday night multimedia tribute to Pierre Boulez, seven-time festival director, on the occasion of his 90th birthday. Four concerts are devoted to his music, each in creative juxtaposition with works by Béla Bartók: the six string quartets and, as the finale, the Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion. This means Steven Schick will have the last word: a snare drum diminuendo with which he ushers us across the fluid borders of his imagination into silence.

– Christopher Hailey

Christopher Hailey is a music historian specializing in new music. He is the Ojai Music Festival’s longtime annotator and host of Concert Insights, the Festival’s in-depth discussions held before each concert.

Listen and view Steven Schick’s playlist >>

View the complete 2015 Schedule >>

Embrace the Ojai Experience! Purchase your series passes now >>

This Weekend: Tickets Available For The Holiday Home Look In

18HHLI Logo
Explore beautiful Ojai Valley homes spruced up with festive inspirations for you to enjoy!Saturday & Sunday, November 15 and 16  |  10am to 4pm

$30/per person (advance price) | Prices increase to $35 during tour weekend
Buy tickets or pick up tickets:
  • Our will call box office will be at the Holiday Marketplace, located at the Matilija Junior High School Gym (703 El Paseo Road)
  • Need tickets? You can purchase at the Holiday Marketplace, or at one of our ticket outlets – Attitude Adjustment, Down Home Furnishings, Kava Gifts, or Rains Department Store. Prices increase to $35 per person. Download a $5 off coupon here >> 
  • Call our box office at 805 646 2094. Tickets over the phone will be placed in our will call box office

Plan your weekend:

  • Stop by the Holiday Marketplace (703 El Paseo Road) and enjoy more than 40 curated vendors! Admission is free and open to the public. For more information click here >>
  • Weather reports are predicting beautiful clear skies for the weekend.
  • Homes will be given decorative holiday sprucing provided by Ojai Valley designers.
  • Wear comfortable, closed-toe shoes. The homes also have beautiful outdoor grounds to stroll
  • Children under 12 will not be admitted in the homes
  • There will be complimentary shuttles to take you to Las Piedras, and it will be worth the trip to see this amazing property! Catch the shuttle at San Antonio School (650 Carne Road)
  • Take the time to enjoy a great meal at one of Ojai’s restaurants. There are many to choose from – Osteria Monte Grappa to Suzanne’s Cuisine, to Marche Gourmet and Feast Bistro. View a list of eateries here >>
    For more information please call us at 805 646 2094

2015 Music Director Steven Schick Announces Programs For The 69th Festival: June 10-14, 2015

The 2015 Festival is a celebration of 20th and 21st century composers with works by seventeen new to Ojai including Alberto Ginastera, Michael Gordon, Julia Wolfe, David Lang, Pauline Oliveros, as well as by emerging composers including Anna Thorvaldsdottir and Lei Liang

The Festival marks the occasion of Pierre Boulez’s 90th birthday with a special event, A Pierre Dream: A Portrait of Pierre Boulez, the West Coast premiere of the Chicago Symphony’s Beyond the Score production on Wednesday, June 10, plus five concerts pairing the music of Boulez with works by Bartók, Messiaen, and Ravel

Program features the West Coast premiere of Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Luther Adams’ Sila: The Breath of the World and the American premiere of Roland Auzet’s staging of Kurt Schwitters’ Dadaist masterpiece Ursonate

Cal Performances’ Ojai at Berkeley slated for June 18-20 after the Ojai Music Festival

“As a percussionist I spend my days searching for new sounds and new places to experience them. I often think of myself as a pilgrim in the land of new noises. For me, then, the Ojai Festival is paradise: it’s the perfect combination of provocative new sounds, great music and a magical place.”  – Steven Schick, Music Director

Download PDF version of the press release >>

OJAI, CA (November 13, 2014) — The 69th Ojai Music Festival (June 10-14, 2015) with Music Director Steven Schick focuses on 20th and 21st century composers. With Artistic Director Thomas W. Morris, Mr. Schick has curated an explosive festival featuring music by more than 30 composers, half of whom are new to Ojai. Highlights also include the West Coast premiere of John Luther Adam’s Sila: The Breath of the World and the celebration of Pierre Boulez’s 90th birthday with a special event on Wednesday, June 10, and throughout the Festival, with five concerts devoted to his music and musical influences.

The 2015 Festival welcomes Ojai alumni artist, percussionist, conductor, teacher, and author Steven Schick as music director. He will be joined by artistic colleagues making their Ojai debuts, including ICE (International Contemporary Ensemble), flutist Claire Chase, pipa artist Wu Man, cellist Maya Beiser, the Calder Quartet, and San Diego-based string ensemble Renga. Returning to Ojai will be pianists Gloria Cheng and Vicki Ray, mezzo-soprano Peabody Southwell, and percussion ensemble red fish blue fish.

No one has done more to champion, interpret, and expand the repertoire of contemporary percussion music than Steven Schick. Not only has he mastered the entire solo repertory – and more than doubled its size through commissions – but as a conductor, educator, and author he has deepened the understanding of the role of percussion in music’s past, present, and future. More importantly, as an artist of broad interests and deep convictions, he has explored cultural issues well beyond the already boundless frontiers of his chosen specialization.

To a percussionist’s ear music begins with rhythm, color, and gesture and these are the elements that form the nexus of the diverse works and decidedly international array of composers of this all 20th- and 21st-century festival. Mr. Schick will perform classics of the solo percussion repertory — compositions by Karl Stockhausen, Iannis Xenakis, and Vinko Globokar — as well as more recent works by David Lang and Kaija Saariaho. Mr. Schick will tackle Globokar’s theatrical works Toucher, in which he is called on to recite Brecht while confronting an array of percussion sounds, and ?Corporel, where he performs body percussion bare-chested and barefoot. He will also perform the American premiere of Roland Auzet’s staging of Kurt Schwitters’ Dadaist masterpiece, Ursonate.

Mr. Schick will also conduct ICE, red fish blue fish, and Renga – groups with which he is closely identified – in a broad array of ensemble works of varied scorings.

Five Festival concerts are devoted to Pierre Boulez’s music and musical influences, four in juxtaposition with works by Béla Bartók — the six string quartets performed by the Calder Quartet, and as the Festival finale, the Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion with pianists Gloria Cheng and Vicki Ray and percussionists Steven Schick and Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Joseph Pereira. Another concert will pair Boulez’s works with the music of Maurice Ravel and Olivier Messiaen.

Among the distinguished soloists joining Mr. Schick are cellist Maya Beiser playing pieces by Osvaldo Golijov, Michael Harrison, Bright Sheng, and Chinary Ung; virtuoso pipa player Wu Man performing Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Pipa; and mezzo-soprano Peabody Southwell singing Ravel’s Trois poèmes de Stéphane Mallarmé. Other highlights are a sunrise performance of Morton Feldman’s hypnotic 4-1/2 hour marathon, For Philip Guston, in which Mr. Schick will be joined by flutist Claire Chase and pianist Sarah Rothenberg, and Ms. Cheng and Ms. Ray performing Messiaen’s mystical work Visions de l’amen. This year’s program will also include works by Alberto Ginastera, whose music is new to Ojai, Carlos Chavez and Edgard Varèse, as well as one late-night chestnut, Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring, in the composer’s arrangement for 13 players.

A Pierre Dream: A Portrait of Pierre Boulez
The Ojai Music Festival honors Pierre Boulez on the occasion of his 90th birthday with four concerts featuring Boulez’s music paired with the music of Béla Bartók. In addition, on Wednesday, June 10, Ojai will present the West Coast premiere of A Pierre Dream: A Portrait of Pierre Boulez, a kaleidoscope of recorded and live music, words, and imagery of Maestro Boulez. A Pierre Dream is one of Chicago Symphony’s Beyond the Score programs and features an original set design by celebrated architect Frank Gehry. The performance will be preceded by a special panel discussion with Boulez’s friends and colleagues entitled “Boulez in Ojai.” Pierre Boulez has served as music director seven times since he first curated the Festival in 1967. He was most recently music director in 2003.

The Ojai performance of A Pierre Dream will be performed by ICE and mezzo-soprano Peabody Southwell, conducted by Steven Schick. It will include projections of rare documentary footage of Pierre Boulez from the 1960s to the present day. At the core of the projected material will be footage from very recent 2013 interviews with Boulez conducted in his home in Baden-Baden, Germany, specially made for this project, the development of which he has supported from the beginning.

“Pierre Boulez is not only one of the seminal figures of our time but a prominent figure in Ojai’s history having made Ojai debut in 1967. He has been music director seven times. It is only fitting that we celebrate this master and friend on this milestone,” commented Artistic Director Thomas W. Morris.

Sila: The Breath of the World
Festival collaborator and recent Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Luther Adams returns to Ojai with the West Coast premiere of Sila: The Breath of the World, to be performed at a free community event throughout Libbey Park. This new work for an ensemble of 80 musicians received its first performances last July at the Lincoln Center Out of Doors Festival. In the Inuit tradition, sila is the spirit that animates all things – the wind, the weather, and all forces of nature. In Sila: The Breath of the World, composed specifically to be heard outdoors, musicians and listeners alike are encouraged to move about the performance space freely. The Ojai performance will include musicians from CalArts, ICE, and red fish blue fish. Mr. Adams’ music was first heard at the 2009 Festival, and again in 2012 with a performance of Inuksuit in Libbey Park. The 2013 Festival featured performances of his For Lou Harrison, Strange and Sacred Noise, and songbirdsongs.

Community Concerts
The Festival’s tradition of free community concerts and Ojai Late Nights for Festival attendees and the public continues. 2015 highlights include a work by percussionist/composer Glenn Kotche making his Ojai debut; Evan Ziporyn’s arrangements of rock music by Led Zepplin, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, and others; and music by emerging composers of the ICElab program. Ojai Films will be announced in the spring.

Ojai Talks
Ojai Talks with host Ara Guzelimian, former Festival Artistic Director and Dean of The Juilliard School, begin on Thursday, June 11, with Mr. Guzelimian in conversation with John Luther Adams and Steven Schick. This discussion is followed by a second session, “The World of Percussion” with Mr. Schick. On Friday, June 12, Mr. Guzelimian will lead conversations with Festival artists Claire Chase and Wu Man.

Ojai North is now Ojai at Berkeley
Marking the fifth year of artistic partnership, Ojai at Berkeley celebrates the dynamic nature of the Ojai Music Festival and of Cal Performances. As two distinct communities with similar values, Ojai and Berkeley are known for intrepid artistic discovery, spirited intellect, and enduring engagement in the arts. Inaugurated in 2011, Ojai at Berkeley follows the 2015 Ojai Music Festival, taking place from June 18 to 20 in Berkeley, CA. Ojai at Berkeley creates a joint force that enables co-commissions and co-productions and allows artists to achieve more than could be imagined by each organization separately. 2015 Ojai at Berkeley will announce its program schedule on November 18. For more information visit CalPerformances.org.

Steven Schick, Music Director
No stranger to Ojai, percussionist, conductor, and author Steven Schick collaborated on the 2011 Festival’s production of George Crumb’s Winds of Destiny (Dawn Upshaw, music director), as well as the 2012 Festival (Leif Ove Andsnes, music director) in John Luther Adams’ Inuksuit. Mr. Schick was born in Iowa and raised in a farming family. For 35 years he has championed contemporary music by commissioning and premiering more than 150 new works. He was the founding percussionist of the Bang on a Can All-Stars (1992-2002) and served as Artistic Director of the Centre International de Percussion de Genève (2000-2005). Mr. Schick is founder and Artistic Director of the percussion group, red fish blue fish. Currently, he is Music Director of the La Jolla Symphony and Chorus and Artistic Director of the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players. In 2012 he became the first Artist-in-Residence with the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE). He also maintains a lively schedule of guest conducting including appearances with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. Mr. Schick founded and is currently Artistic Director of “Roots and Rhizomes,” a summer course on contemporary percussion music held at the Banff Centre for the Arts. Among his acclaimed publications is a book, The Percussionist’s Art: Same Bed, Different Dreams, and numerous recordings of contemporary percussion music including a three CD set of the complete percussion music of Iannis Xenakis (Mode). Steven Schick is Distinguished Professor of Music at the University of California, San Diego.

For more artist bios, visit OjaiFestival.org

Thomas W. Morris, Artistic Director
Thomas W. Morris was appointed artistic director of the Ojai Music Festival starting with the 2004 Festival and will provide artistic direction through the 75th Festival in 2021. Mr. Morris is recognized as one of the most innovative leaders in the orchestra industry and served as the long-time chief executive of both The Cleveland Orchestra and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Morris is currently active nationally and internationally as a consultant, lecturer, teacher, and writer.

As artistic director of the 69-year-old Festival, Mr. Morris is responsible for artistic planning, and each year appoints a music director with whom he collaborates on shaping the Festival’s programming. During his decade-long tenure, audiences have increased and the scope of the Festival has expanded, most recently to include a collaborative partnership, Ojai at Berkeley, with Cal Performances in Berkeley.

Mr. Morris was a founding director of Spring for Music, and served as the project’s artistic director. He currently serves as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Curtis Institute of Music and as chair of its Board of Overseers, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Interlochen Center for the Arts. He is also an accomplished percussionist.

About the Ojai Music Festival
From its founding in 1947, the Ojai Music Festival has created a place for groundbreaking musical experiences, bringing together innovative artists and curious audiences in an intimate, idyllic setting 80 miles northwest of Los Angeles. The Festival presents broad-ranging programs in unusual ways with an eclectic mix of rarely performed music, refreshing juxtapositions of musical styles, and music by today’s composers. The four-day festival is a complete immersive experience with concerts, free community events, symposia, film screenings, and gatherings. Considered a highlight of the summer season, Ojai has remained a leader in the classical music landscape.

The Ojai Music Festival attracts the world’s greatest musical artists. Through its unique structure of the Artistic Director appointing an annual music director, Ojai has presented a “who’s who” of music including: Aaron Copland, Igor Stravinsky, Olivier Messiaen, Michael Tilson Thomas, Kent Nagano, Pierre Boulez, John Adams, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Robert Spano, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, David Robertson, eighth blackbird, George Benjamin, Dawn Upshaw, Leif Ove Andsnes, Mark Morris, and Jeremy Denk.

Participation in the 2015 Ojai Music Festival
The Ojai Music Festival continues to draw thousands of curious and engaged music enthusiasts from across the country and has had record sell-out concerts over the last three years. As 2011 Music Director Dawn Upshaw commented, “There is a very special spirit of collaboration here [Ojai], fostered in part by the gorgeous natural setting and also by the friendly engagement of everyone involved.”

As tickets remain in high demand, Ojai now includes virtual opportunities to participate in the Festival experience through live video streaming of concerts. The Festival promotes year-round participation and deeper engagement through its free online courses, OjaiU, which launched in May 2013 and remains active via archives on the Festival website at www.OjaiFestival.org and on the OjaiU website at www.OjaiU.org. OjaiU returns next spring with a class of three online sessions exploring the history and world of percussion as told by 2015 Music Director Steven Schick. The free sessions will explore the history of the relationship between percussion and the culture at large. To register, visit www.OjaiFestival.org.

Festival series passes are available for the 2015 Festival and may be purchased online at OjaiFestival.org or by calling (805) 646-2053. 2015 Ojai Music Festival series passes range from $110 to $730 for reserved seating and lawn series passes start at $55. Single concert passes will be available in spring 2015. Directions to Ojai, as well as information about lodging, concierge services for visitors and other Ojai activities, are also available on the Ojai web site.

Follow Festival updates at OjaiFestival.org, Facebook (Facebook.com/ojaifestival), and Twitter (@ojaifestivals).

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Invitation to Members of the Press: For information on press passes and lodging options, please contact Gina Gutierrez at ggutierrez@ojaifestival.org.

For photos, visit the press page >>

Download 2015 Ojai Music Festival Schedule >>

 

Thomas W. Morris Continues To Shape Ojai Music Festival Artistic Direction Through Festival’s 75th Anniversary in 2021

My artistic job in building a festival comes down to two overriding goals: To build on the Ojai aesthetic of discovery, adventure, and involvement, and to provide each music director a forum to explore and experiment melding his/her musical personality with the rich heritage of this glorious festival and sublimely beautiful place. It is irresistible, exhilarating and enormous fun. - Thomas W. Morris, Artistic Director

Download PDF version of press release >>

OJAI, CA November 4, 2014 — Ojai Music Festival Board President David Nygren announced that artistic director Thomas W. Morris will extend his contract through July 2021, the Festival’s 75th anniversary season. Mr. Morris was named artistic director in 2004.

Under Mr. Morris’ leadership the Festival has remained a touchstone of artistic innovation and groundbreaking exploration for leading artists and curious music enthusiasts from around the world. During his tenure, he has expanded the festival into a vibrant four-day immersive experience with more concerts performed at the Libbey Bowl and throughout the Ojai Valley, free community events, symposia, and films. Artists selected by Mr. Morris as music directors are all deeply committed to musical discovery. In 2014, he announced future music directors percussionist Steven Schick (2015), director Peter Sellars (2016) and composer/conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen (2017). Also tapped by Mr. Morris as past music directors have been eighth blackbird, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Leif Ove Andsnes, George Benjamin, Oliver Knussen, Mark Morris, Kent Nagano, David Robertson, Robert Spano, Dawn Upshaw, and most recently, Jeremy Denk. With this contract extension, Mr. Morris will continue long-term visionary artistic planning for the organization.

Prior to Mr. Morris, previous artistic directors have included John Bauer (as managing director, 1957-1954), Lawrence Morton (1954–1970, 1981–1987), Ara Guzelimian (1992-1997), and Ernest Fleischmann (1998 to 2003).

“We are thrilled that Tom has committed to the Festival through 2021. With Tom’s artistic brilliance in continuing to create a new and imaginative experience year after year, he has an innate ability to create an environment of inclusiveness for both the experienced music festival attendee and the first time attendee. Tom nurtures the creativity of each music director, blending their artistic sensibilities with the unique and beautiful setting of the Ojai Music Festival,” said Board President David Nygren. “Under Tom’s strong leadership and innovative approach, the Festival has gained international recognition and reach. He has been successful in creating community engagement events during the Festival that showcase musical artists from all over the world, creating opportunities for music lovers of all ages to participate in the festival.”

Mr. Morris said, “Working in Ojai continues to be a rich and rewarding creative experience, in not only working with artists who perform here but in building off of the incredibly active role the audience plays. They do not just sit and receive; they provide much of the artistic energy and vitality. In fact all the artists speak of the attentiveness and energy of the audience. And the possibilities of what you can do are far broader than I could have imagined. I learned that the further afield you go from the traditional concert experience (not just in repertoire, but in the concert structures and the total experience itself) the better it works.”

Artists who have served or will serve as music directors are quick to recognize the immense value and fun they experience throughout the process of imagining their Festival with Mr. Morris.

Robert Spano (2006): “There is no better time to be had than coming up with programs with Tom Morris. His encyclopedic knowledge, remarkable inventiveness, and creativity are matched only by his fantastic sense of humor. Ojai has been made an even richer place with his tenure.”

eighth blackbird (2009): “Tom was always willing to step outside the Festival’s comfort zone….He knew his audience at Ojai in minute detail, and could assess exactly how much to push their buttons, to provoke them, to give them candy as well as greens.”

Steven Schick (2015): “Tom Morris is the absolute gold standard when it comes to being an artistic partner. And the process this year in anticipation of 2015 has lived up to every expectation. It’s all about the conversations. Our conversations about music have been far-ranging and provocative. And they are always flavored with a keen awareness of the environment and traditions of the Ojai Music Festival. The result is a set of concerts that neither of us would have programmed individually but which, taken together, represent a communal view of how great music can find a home in a great festival.”

Peter Sellars (2016): “Tom Morris figured out a long time ago that the first step in being adventurous is being astute….Tom has held major establishment posts, but has always operated within them with a certain flair, a certain knack, a certain curiosity, and a certain predilection for innovation, for surprise, for change, and for a better idea….He loves to make things happen — the thrill and subtle and far-reaching shifts in organizations, programming, and new encounters with audiences is irresistible to him.”

2015 Ojai Music Festival
Ojai enthusiastically welcomes percussionist, conductor, teacher, and author Steven Schick as Music Director for the 69th Ojai Music Festival, June 11 to 14, 2015. With Mr. Morris, Mr. Schick has created an involving festival focused on 20th and 21st century composers with an abundance of music from early morning to late night. Joining him will be long-time colleagues including the International Contemporary Ensemble (“ICE”), the San Diego string ensemble Renga, pipa artist Wu Man, flutist Claire Chase, and virtuoso cellist Maya Beiser.

The Festival program will highlight music by 30 composers, half of whom are new to Ojai; the West Coast premiere of Pulitzer-prize winner John Luther Adam’s Sila: The Breath of the World; and a pre-festival celebration of the 90th birthday of Pierre Boulez on Wednesday June 10 with the west coast premiere of A Pierre Dream: A Portrait of Pierre Boulez, a multi-media kaleidoscope production with narration, archive films clips, live music, and stage sets by Frank Gehry, a part of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Beyond the Score series.

Thomas W. Morris, Artistic Director
Thomas W. Morris was appointed artistic director of the Ojai Music Festival starting with the 2004 Festival. Recognized as one of the most innovative leaders in the orchestra industry, he has served as the long-time chief executive of both The Cleveland Orchestra and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Morris is currently active nationally and internationally as a consultant, lecturer, teacher, and writer.

As artistic director of the 69-year-old Festival, Mr. Morris is responsible for artistic planning, and each year appoints a music director with whom he collaborates on shaping the Festival’s programming. During his decade-long tenure, audiences have increased and the scope of the Festival has expanded, including Ojai at Berkeley, a collaborative partnership with Cal Performances.

Mr. Morris was a founding director of Spring for Music, and served as the project’s artistic director. He currently serves as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Curtis Institute of Music and as chair of its Board of Overseers, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Interlochen Center for the Arts. He is also an accomplished percussionist.

The Ojai Music Festival
From its founding in 1947, the Ojai Music Festival has created a place for groundbreaking musical experiences, bringing together innovative artists and curious audiences in an intimate, idyllic setting 80 miles northwest of Los Angeles. The Festival presents broad-ranging programs in unusual ways, giving patrons a fresh perspective on the works they hear. The four-day festival is a complete immersion experience with main concerts, free community events, symposia, film screenings, and gatherings. Considered a highlight of the summer season, Ojai has remained a leader in the classical music landscape.

The Ojai Music Festival attracts the world’s greatest musical artists. Through its unique structure of the Artistic Director appointing an annual Music Director, Ojai has presented a “who’s who” of music including: Aaron Copland, Igor Stravinsky, Olivier Messiaen, Michael Tilson Thomas, Kent Nagano, Pierre Boulez, John Adams, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Robert Spano, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, David Robertson, eighth blackbird, George Benjamin, Dawn Upshaw, Leif Ove Andsnes, Mark Morris, and Jeremy Denk.

The Festival has also recently announced music directors for 2015–2017: Steven Schick, percussionist, for 2015; Peter Sellars, director, for 2016; and Esa-Pekka Salonen, composer/conductor, for 2017.

Series passes for the 69th Ojai Music Festival – June 11 to 14, 2015 – are on sale now. Series passes range from $730 to $120 reserved section and $90 to $55 lawn area. Tickets for the pre-festival special event celebrating the 90th birthday of Pierre Boulez are $90 for reserved section and $40 for general admission. For more information visit OjaiFestival.org or call 805 646 2094.

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Thomas W. Morris A Decade of Innovative Programming >>

Ojai Music Festival Roster of Music Directors >>

contact:
Gina Gutierrez, 805 646 2094, ggutierrez@ojaifestival.org
Nikki Scandalios, (704) 340-4094, nikki@scandaliospr.com

2014 Holiday Home Look In Entertainment Schedule

Each year, the Holiday Home Look In is enhanced by live music performed by local professional and student musicians. Check the schedule below to find your favorite area performers – and discover some new ones! 

Saturday, November 15.                                                                       

Buena Robles
10am: Saville Bloxham & Emily Gilman
12pm: Andi Starr & Bob Bishop, guitar and vocals
2pm: Hatters Tea, guitar and vocals
3pm: Caitlin Sexton, violin

Smitty and Julija

Smitty and Julija


Ojai Masonic Lodge
11am: Smitty and Julija, vocals and keyboard
1pm: David Henderson, piano
3pm: Rachel Holdt, vocals and ukelele

Las Piedras
10am: Ray Sullivan, guitar
12pm: Bonnie Griffen, flute
2pm: Audrey McPherson and Terry Wolff, flutes

 

 

Madrigali

Madrigali


Schmidt Mediterranean

10am: Charletta Erb, fiddle
12pm: Madrigali, Ojai’s own Madrigal Ensemble
2pm: George Lemire, vocals and guitar

 

 

 


Sunday, November 16

The Byle Family

The Byle Family


Buena Robles
10am: The Bassoons of Thacher
12pm: Celtic Nut, The Byle Family
2pm: Hatters Tea, guitar and vocals
3pm: Billy Russo, guitar and vocals

 

 

 

David Henderson

David Henderson


Ojai Masonic Lodge
10am: Judy Vander, piano
11:30am: Smitty and Julija, vocals and keyboard
1pm: David Henderson, piano
3pm: Rachel Holdt, vocals and ukelele

 

 

 

Ray with Guitar Small

Ray Sullivan


Las Piedras
10am: Ray Sullivan, guitar
12pm: The Adelman Family, vocals, strings and more
2pm: David Gorospe, keyboard and vocals

Schmidt Mediterranean
10am: Eliana and Elizabeth Van Renterghem, flutes
12pm: George Lemire, guitar and vocals
2pm: Caitlin Sexton, violin

 

Meet The 2014 Holiday Home Look In Designers

Each year, a different local designer takes charge of each of the houses on the Holiday Home Look In Tour. This year’s designers are Jodi Brandt (Curly Willow), Lynn Malone (Digs), and the team of Chad and Ann Carper (Chad Carper Construction and Down Home Furnishings) and Karen Hesli (Ojai’s own ‘Wreath Lady’). Read about each of the designer’s below and get a sneak peek at their inspirations and design ethos:

Ojai Masonic Lodge
Floral Design: Jodi Brandt (Curly Willow)

Jodi Brandt of Curly Willow 2Jodi Brandt has spent the last 30 years designing beautiful flower arrangements for every event imaginable including weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, corporate events, and end of life celebrations.

Jodi opened her flower shop, Curly Willow, in the fall of 2001 in Meiners Oaks.  Six years later she relocated her shop to downtown Ojai where she ran her business until 2012 when she met her fiancé. She now creates her unique and inspired designs for delivery from the ranch where they reside in the beautiful Ojai Valley.

Designing for celebrities and residents alike, her work has gained national notice and has been featured in numerous national wedding magazines.

A true artist at heart and no longer restricted by the limits of a bricks and mortar store, she has branched out into other artistic mediums including interior design consultation services. She has provided transforming insight to homeowners, renters, and small businesses and received such positive results and reviews she is now offering interior designs as an extension of Curly Willow.

“When I walk into a space I can actually see the unrealized potential. Often times it’s as simple as changing around what people already have to achieve remarkable results.“

Jodi is flattered and honored to be invited back to design floral arrangements for the 2014 Holiday Home Look In, this time with Allen and Dawn Shook’s home.

Jodi Brandt
(805) 646-6999
www.CurlyWillow-Ojai.com


Schmidt Home
Floral Design: Lynn Malone (Digs)

Lynn-Malone-4With over 20 years managing operations and fundraising endeavors for various Ojai nonprofits including the Ojai Music Festival, Lynn Malone has made an art of creating exquisite event designs on a budget.

On her 60th birthday, Lynn decided to gift herself with her own business, doing something in tune with her artistic side. She knew that it would involve nature and would not involve sitting at a desk. Serendipitously, the little flower shop at the corner of Highway 33 and Baldwin Road became available just as she was looking for what her new adventure would be. Lynn breathed new life into the shop, which is now called Digs and offers fresh cut flowers, live plants, and beautiful orchid arrangements.

Lynn enjoys creating unique floral designs for parties, weddings, and other events and is proud to be Ojai’s florist of choice for the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa. Her favorite part of the business is helping her customers give gifts of smiles to others. “Though I love the artistic challenge, the true reward is in helping people make someone else happy. Whether a thank you, congratulations, birthday, a boy giving flowers to his girlfriend, an anniversary, a get well wish, or an expression of sympathy, it’s always touching to connect with people at life’s most meaningful moments. I never anticipated the joy this would bring.”

Lynn is excited to work with Valerie and Dietrich Schmidt to integrate floral art pieces that compliment the magnificent art collection in their home. The designs you’ll see are, for the most part, interchangeable between holidays and could add visual beauty to many other occasions as well. While touring the home, imagine how each design could accent your own place or event, or be a unique floral gift for someone special.

Visit digs at www.yourdigsdesigns.com.


Las Piedras

Design: Chad Carper and Down Home Furnishings
Floral Accents: Karen Hesli

Carpers picChad Carper Construction and Down Home Furnishings are owned by Ojai natives and married couple, Chad and Anne Carper. The two have joined forces in the building and design of some of Ojai’s most noteworthy homes.

Raised in Ojai and the son of a carpenter, Chad started his career at age 18 as a union apprentice. His love of building grew with his skill and he became a General Contractor.

Established in 1988, Chad Carper Construction now brings 37 years of fine home building experience to the table. Use of local stone, hand-hewn beams and interior plaster walls have become trademarks of Carper homes. Use of top quality materials and superb craftsmanship has made Chad Carper one of the most sought-after homebuilders in Ojai. Nine of the homes previously featured in Ojai’s Holiday Home Look In were built by Chad Carper Construction.

Founded in 2000, Down Home Furnishings is known for it’s eclectic mix of imported furniture and up-scale custom upholstery. Also raised in Ojai, Anne took a more round about path to her current profession. A former accountant, she began her career in design as an importer of Indonesian and Thai antiques. After opening a retail space, she eventually added custom upholstery, lighting, window coverings and art. Down Home Furnishings is now a local center for unique interiors. Requests from customers for her design advice led to a thriving interior design business that now serves clients from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara.

www.downhomefurnishings.com

Karen Hesli, Wreath Lady
Karen-Hesli-pic
For the past 15 years, from mid-November through December, you can find the Wreath Lady next to Brian the Honey Guy at Ojai’s Farmer’s Market on Sundays.  Originally she made wreathes for gifts, and eventually friends encouraged her to launch Canyon Creations in 2001 at the Ojai Famer’s Market. A ‘hobby gone wild,’ Karen loves combining the colors and textures of nature’s bountiful pods, berries, buds, leaves and flowers into a work of art.

Each handcrafted wreath or swag celebrates nature’s beauty and is mounted on a sturdy recycled wood frame.  Harvesting a diverse palette from my own and friends’ gardens, I create holiday wreathes, wedding bowers, garlands, centerpieces and bouquets for all occasions. You can reach me at karenhesli@gmail.com.

Purchase tickets to the 2014 Holiday Home Look In, November 15-16 >>

 

A Design Preview by Digs Floral Designer, Lynn Malone

Lynn Malone, floral designer and owner of Digs Floral and Botanic Design in Ojai, will be making her Holiday Home Look In debut at the Schmidt home in Rancho Matilija. Lynn sat down to write us a blog about her plans and inspirations for the decor.

Purchase tickets to the Holiday Home Look In, November 15-16 >>

With the excitement of fall color in full bloom it was tempting to style the Schmidt home for Thanksgiving this year, but as a floral designer, I’m equally excited about holiday cheer and winter whites. When the homeowner and I met to plan the floral décor within this beautiful palette  of a home, we decided that it would be fun to use floral designs that could be versatile for both holidays so that they could be used for the entire season. In designing the florals, we agreed upon a few priorities. While a few pieces will be works of art, designed to compliment the exquisite art collection in the home, we wanted to keep many of the floral designs simple, so that guests could easily replicate them in their own homes.

Entering the home through the massive front doors, guests will be greeted with warm traditional holiday looks designed to inspire a holiday mood. Inside, fresh, contemporary holiday designs will be showcased, along with a bit of the unexpected, and a touch of whimsy here and there for fun. Floral colors have been chosen to accent the magnificent collection of artwork displayed throughout the home.

Nature will also be at play. Giant pinecones and air plants in a stunning burl wood bowl will adorn the family room and fireplace. In the master bedroom, a dress form will be decked out for the holidays in a cedar and redwood gown with floral accents.  A silver teapot will delight the senses as spicey floral “steam” comes from the spout. The massive dining table will be set for a big family feast with white pumpkins which have been repurposed for Christmas joined by stately amaryllis florals and other festive touches. For a touch of whimsy, don’t miss Rudolph in the grand children’s room or the Grinch tree on the back patio.

The design team at Digs is having so much fun preparing over 25 floral pieces for the Schmidt home on this year’s Holiday Home Look In tour. We hope you’ll enjoy them and that you’ll come on by our shop for your holiday florals and gifts.


Here are a few inspirations we found on Pinterest.  Visit the Schmidt Home at Rancho Matilija to see where we take them from here!

flower 2 flower 3 Unknownreindeer

Join Us At The 2015 Festival Launch Party – November 22

Layout 1

Join us at our 2015 Launch Party – Saturday, November 22 at 5pm at the Festival Lounge (201 S Signal St)

  • Learn more about the 2015 Festival concerts and artists from Artistic Director Thomas W. Morris
  • Meet our new Board President David Nygren
  • Enjoy the company of other music enthusiasts

Light refreshments will be served.

Free and open to the Festival community.
RSVP by emailing info@ojaifestival.org to RSVP or calling 805 646 2094. Hope to see you there!

Steven Schick 2015 Festival Playlist

2015 Music Director Steven Schick shared with us a story of how he walked from San Diego at the Mexican border to San Francisco to propose to his wife Brenda. Walking the length of the coast, Steve says, he was “constantly engaged in this world of noise….through your ears you know where we are, what we’re thinking, where we are in the world.”

In that vein, we recently asked Steve if he would make a curated playlist – a list of pieces to listen to in anticipation of the 2015 Festival. He enthusiastically responded with an annotated “Ojai Themes Listening List,” which we have put into audio and video playlists below. While we were able to find most of what was on Steve’s list online, there were some that eluded us…if you happen to stumble across them, let us know and we’ll add them in!

Listen to the playlist using Spotify and read/watch the complete list here >>

Steve’s Complete List:

Maya Beiser
Caught by the Sky with Wire – Nick Didkovsky (oo-discs)
Industry – Michael Gordon (SONY)

Both of these pieces come from my time with Bang on a Can. Maya was the founding cellist of the Bang on a Can All-Stars. I love her aching version of Michael’s piece, especially the way she leans into those shifting thirds. Nick Didkovsky’s piece is from our eponymous duo recording.

Renga
Symphony #80 – Haydn (Private recording)

Maya Beiser is one of my oldest friends and longstanding partners. Renga, which I co-lead with the wonderful violinist Kate Hatmaker., is one of the newest. From our debut concert, this version of Haydn’s mercurial Symphony #80.

red fish blue fish
Perspehassa - Iannis Xenakis (Mode Records)

One of most awe-inspiring percussion pieces of all times is Xenakis’s Persephassa. This recording is the first of many I did with red fish blue fish, the ensemble of graduate student percussionists I found at UC San Diego 20 years ago. The final five minutes of the recording, recorded in multiple tracks to realize accurately Xenakis’s indication for the extremely dense tremolos, is about as exciting as percussion music gets.

John Luther Adams
Mathematics of Resonant Bodies (Cantaloupe Records)

Listening to John’s music makes me feel like I am standing in powerful surf: excitement is always tempered by the sense that you’re about to lose your footing. The titanic and tidal Mathematics of Resonant Bodies has been the touchstone for our long friendship.

Varèse
Amériques (1922 version)

On the first day of my first visit to New York City, I walked from a friend’s apartment on the Upper West Side down the length of Manhattan to stand outside of Edgard Varèse’s house on Sullivan Street. I now know that apartment as the home of my friend Chou Wen-chung and his wife Yi-an. But on that cool sunny day in early November of 1977 all I could think of when I stood in front of the famous door was that this was where Varèse lived and worked. Even though Amériques was composed before he bought the Sullivan Street house, it has come to symbolize Varèse deep resonance with New York. You don’t have to listen very hard to hear the sounds of the city he loved.

PERCUSSION
Tabla Solo in Japthal – Ustad Alla Rakha

Drum set solos – Elvin Jones, Art Blakey, Sunny Murray

I include two clips of non-Western percussion pieces to underscore the solidarity I feel with all percussionists, whatever their tradition. I also like to remind myself that, as we celebrate the percussive art as one of the advance guards of contemporary music, it also has a global tradition thousands of years.

Gamelan Gong Kebyar

Gene Kruppa and Barbara Stanwick “Drum Boogie”…
…and then his encore!

VOICE
Hurt – Johnny Cash (He lived in Casitas Springs)

I love the “beautiful un-beautiful” voice. And there are lots of great examples. I chose this late song from Johnny Cash – a cover of Trent Rezner’s “Hurt” – for two reasons: Firstly, he Johnny Cash lived for a while in Casitas Springs, just down the road from Ojai, and secondly because, well, he’s Johnny Cash. My “WWJCD” wrist band stands for “What would Johnny Cash do?”

Equatorial - Edgard Varèse
Los Hermanos – Mercedes Souza

Two very different songs with roots in Latin America. Varèse’s mysterious and magisterial Ecuatorial, here in the version for male chorus and ensemble instead of soloist evokes a people in contact with their primal environment. In Mercedes Souza’s account of Atahualpa Yupanqui’s Los Hermanos, we hear people in contact with each other. Los Hermanos was the anthem of the dissident left-wing under the dictatorships in Argentina and Chile. “Tengo tantos hermanos que no los puedo contra…y una hermana muy hermosa qui se llama libertad.”

Quatre Chansons – Gérard Grisey
Le Voce sotto Vetro –  Salvatore Sciarinno

ROLAND AUZET
Fejben zsonglőrködő férfiak

What I love about Roland’s art is the precision with which he views the theatrical space. For him a simple movement, like raising the gaze, is to be as disciplined and refined a gesture as a Mozartean cadence. This clip of his two-person show, with juggler Jerome Thoma, shows that in abundance. The precision of the visual counterpoint is dizzying!

SOUNDS OF TRAVELING
I’ve Been Everywhere – Johnny Cash
Atmospheres – Gyorgy Ligeti
Two of Us – The Beatles

These are pretty self-explanatory. Johnny Cash takes us on a tour of American cities. Ligeti takes us even farther away into a sound world of pure imagination. Two of Us was a rare amicable moment in the Beatles contentious last album. One of the great love songs of all times, it celebrates the Lennon/McCartney friendship.

And finally the encore!

Mr. Bean’s Invisible Drum Set

I include it because it’s funny, of course. But behind the humor is a fundamental truth about percussion music: It’s not percussion instruments that define as much as the gestures of performance. Percussionists from widely disparate traditions, playing very different instruments, and having very different personal histories, all make the same physical gestures. The hand lifts and then, whether with or without holding a stick, falls to meet an instrument. This physical arc and the sweet kink of contact with the surface of an instrument (or in Rowan Atkinson’s case with an imagined surface) rather any particular sound that is produced is what makes a percussionist.

 

“In The Ojai Spirit” by Christopher Hailey

old-bowl

For nearly 70 years, the Ojai Music Festival has been a laboratory for the special chemistry that results from combining insatiable curiosity with unbounded creativity. The formula is simple: Each year a music director is given the freedom and resources to imagine four days of musical brainstorming. Some have approached their task with caution, fearing that Ojai might be like other places. But, of course, it’s not. More often this unique blend of enchanted setting and an audience voracious in its appetite for challenge and discovery has inspired a distinguished series of conductors, performers, composers to push at boundaries and stretch limits.

At its inception in 1947, under the guidance of Festival founder John Bauer and conductor Thor Johnson, the Festival featured a balance of classics and more contemporary fare. By the time Lawrence Morton took over as Artistic Director in 1954 the emphasis had shifted to new music and Ojai soon became the showcase as well as a home-away-from-home for such 20th century giants as Luciano Berio, Pierre Boulez, Elliott Carter, Aaron Copland, Lou Harrison, and Olivier Messiaen, not to mention two Southern California “locals”: Arnold Schoenberg and Igor Stravinsky. It was Morton who established the tradition of rotating Music Directors and with this innovation each year’s Festival became the reflection of a succession of larger-than-life personalities, including Robert Craft (joined in 1955 and 1956 by Stravinsky), Copland, Ingolf Dahl, the late Lukas Foss, Boulez, Peter Maxwell-Davies, as well as such rising stars as Michael Tilson Thomas, Calvin Simmons, Kent Nagano, John Adams, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, and David Robertson. Through the years Ojai’s Music Directors have invited distinguished soloists, first-rate chamber ensembles, and world-class orchestras to join them in exploring the intersection between new music and everything from jazz and improvisation to electronics and computers; dance, theater, and experimental staging to social and political issues, not to mention repertory that might go back to the Middle Ages or reach across the globe.

Looking back, it would be difficult to identify any overarching aesthetic premise, though from year to year there has been no shortage of agendas. Rather, the thread running through these past decades has been this Festival’s consistency in promoting creativity and innovation. Here in Ojai hallowed masterpieces and in-your-face experiments can be uneasy bedfellows sharing a berth that is a pedestal of repose for one, a trampoline for the other. And that rumble you hear? It is the steady grumbling from an audience whose outspoken views on any and every subject are the entitlement of its loyalty. Its passion is the true barometer of the health of this Festival. No smugness here; no indifference, either. This is a place for enthusiasms, often excessive, and opinions, sometimes vociferous, and a hunger for shared discovery that reaffirms, year after year, why music matters in the first place.

- Christopher Hailey

Festival Music Directors >>
Festival Milestones >>
Festival Fact Sheet >>

 

Explore Stunning Homes at the 18th Annual Holiday Home Look In – November 15-16

 

Celebrate the festive seasons at the 18th Annual Holiday Home Look In
November 15 & 16, 2014 | 10am to 4pm

Purchase tickets at the Holiday Marketplace – 703 El Paseo Rd.
Tickets are $35 a person.

Download $5 off coupon for day of the event >>

The Ojai Festivals Women’s Committee invites guests on a tour of four distinctive Ojai Valley homes celebrating the art of living and unique approaches to the festive seasons. The 18th Holiday Home Look In, November 15 and 16, is known for highlighting architectural contrasts within the Ojai Valley, a unique feature compared to other home tours in the area.

The 2014 homes reflect four diverse architectural styles, starting with a Masonic Lodge built in 1927 and transformed recently into a private residence in the Palladian manner. There is also a beautiful Craftsman in the Greene & Greene style. Completed just seven months ago, it looks like it’s been in place 100 years. The remaining two homes pay homage to contemporary Mediterranean and Spanish influences. Each features exceptional tree- and landscapes and extensive art collections ranging from cowgirl pop to black & white master photography.

In addition, the annual Holiday Marketplace takes places the same weekend at the Matilija Junior High School Gymnasium (701 El Paseo Road) with more than 40 vendors and artisans. Admission to the marketplace is free. Click here for details >>

The tour and marketplace benefit the Ojai Music Festival and its BRAVO program in the schools and community, which offer free workshops and performances to Ojai Valley public schools and the community.

The tour price is $30 per person advance and $35 day of the event. A group discount is also available for 8 or more people. For the group discount, please call 805 646 2094.

Organizers request no cameras allowed on the tour or children under 12 years of age. Comfortable shoes are highly recommended (no high-heeled shoes allowed). Shuttle service will be provided for one of the homes.

Read more about the homes featured on the tour >>

Meet Candida Condor: New Festival Subscriber

 

Robert Spano conducts the performance of The Rothko Chapel by the Ojai Festival Singers

Robert Spano conducts the performance of “Rothko Chapel ” by the Ojai Festival Singers at the Saturday Late Night concert.

“Earlier this year, 2014, a very dear friend of mine, Annat Provo, invited me to share her series tickets to the Ojai Music Festival. Although I have heard of the Festival for years, I had not attended before. I was delighted to accept her generosity!

The quantity, quality and variety of experience offered by the Festival surprised me. I loved going up to Meditation Mount in the early morning, and staying up late in the balmy evening to be transported by Rothko Chapel – my new favorite music.

Another delightful surprise was the interesting conversation we had with those seated around us. One handsome fellow sitting just in front of me told us about the Rothko Chapel in Houston, about the large canvases hung on the four walls of the spacious room. About the natural light built into the design of the building so that the canvases constantly change as the sun and clouds move across the sky. If I go to Houston, I won’t miss it! And I’ll have the music on my iPod…

Another delightful man, and long-time Festival friend of my friend, was so knowledgeable about the music, the musicians and the composers, and shared so graciously, he brought a greater depth to our appreciation and enjoyment of the excellently executed performances.

I was struck by the community atmosphere I felt everywhere I went. It was such a friendly, warm and welcoming experience. I felt embraced by the music, the town, the weather, and everyone I encountered.

So I now have my own series season ticket and seat — sitting right next to my good friend!”

– submitted by Candida Condor

Have a story to share? Send us an email at ggutierrez@ojaifestival.org 

Visit our online box office >

Watch the Saturday Late Night featuring Rothko Chapel >

Fluid Borders: The Boundless World of Percussionists

7.11.13Percussionists are different. Their musical world has no fixed boundaries; there is no limit to the instruments they play and the sounds they make. There are no pretentious barriers between nature and artifice, no strictures on performing indoors or out. Their precursors reach back to the dawn of time and members of their guild are found in every culture. Hand a percussionist a random rock or the most exquisitely forged gong and he or she will make it speak, sometimes with breathtaking virtuosity born of the simplest gestures by which we interact, though touch, with our material world. So what does it mean that Ojai’s 2015 music director is a percussionist? Quite a lot if that percussionist is Steven Schick.

No one has done more to champion, interpret, and expand the repertory of contemporary percussion music than Steven Schick. Not only has he mastered the entire solo repertory – and more than doubled its size through commissions – but as a conductor, educator, and author he has deepened our understanding of the role of percussion in music’s past, present, and future. More importantly, as an artist of broad interests and deep convictions he has explored cultural issues well beyond the already boundless frontiers of his chosen specialization.

To a percussionist’s ear music begins with rhythm, color, and gesture and these are the elements that form the nexus of the diverse works and decidedly international array of composers of this all 20th- and 21st-century festival. Naturally, we’ll hear Steven Schick perform classics of the solo percussion repertory – compositions by Stockhausen, Xenakis, and Globokar, as well as more recent compositions by David Lang and Kaija Saariaho, and the American premiere of Roland Auzet’s staging of Kurt Schwitter’s Dadist masterpiece, Ursonate. But Steve will also conduct ICE (International Contemporary Ensemble), red fish blue fish, Renga, and musicians from CalArts, groups with which he is closely identified, in a broad array of ensemble works of varied scorings, including the West Coast premiere of John Luther Adams’ Sila. Among the distinguished soloists is cellist Maya Beiser playing pieces by Osvaldo Golijov, Michael Harrison, and Chinary Ung.

Other highlights are a sunrise performance of Morton Feldman’s For Philip Guston in which Steve is joined by flutist Claire Chase and pianist Sarah Rothenberg, Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Pipa featuring Wu Man, and Messiaen’s Vision de l’amen with pianists Gloria Cheng and Vicki Ray. This year’s “old timers” include Copland, Chavez, Ginastera, and Varèse, all with scores new to Ojai, save one late-night chestnut: Appalachian Spring.

2015 marks the beginning of a three-year celebration of Ojai’s roots in Southern California, where open exploration and cross-cultural dialogue are written into the DNA. It is therefore especially apt that this festival opens with a Wednesday night multimedia tribute to Pierre Boulez, seven-time festival director, on the occasion of his 90th birthday. Four concerts are devoted to his music, each in creative juxtaposition with works by Béla Bartók: the six string quartets and, as the finale, the Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion. This means Steven Schick will have the last word: a snare drum diminuendo with which he ushers us across the fluid borders of his imagination into silence.

– Christopher Hailey

Christopher Hailey is a music historian specializing in new music. He is the Ojai Music Festival’s longtime annotator and host of Concert Insights, the Festival’s in-depth discussions held before each concert.

Listen and view Steven Schick’s playlist >>

Embrace the Ojai Experience! Purchase your series passes now >>

Q & A With New Board President David Nygren

D Nygren

The Ojai Music Festival is pleased to announce the appointment of David Nygren as president of the board of directors, effective August 2014. David, who has served on the Ojai board since 2011, is the founder and CEO of Nygren Consulting LLC, which specializes in mergers and acquisitions, board effectiveness, organizational strategy, and executive competency assessment. His company balances Fortune 500 for-profit businesses with the non-profit sector where he works extensively with health systems and arts institutions including the New York Philharmonic and New World Symphony.

David was also the executive vice president at DePaul University, where he was awarded rank and tenure in the department of Psychology, teaching organizational theory and design, leadership, and corporate governance.

He assumes leadership of the board after Stephen (Mike) J.M. Morris, who served an extraordinary year of service as president. Mike will continue to serve on the Festival’s executive committee for a smooth transition.

Recently, David spoke with us about coming on the Ojai board, as well as his favorite Ojai moments.

OMF: What are some of your most memorable moments from past Festivals?

DN: My favorite moments are in the splendor of what we experience only here. I marvel at [artistic director] Tom Morris’ brilliance in convening artists from around the world in this beautiful setting and at the spell of their performances.

These have included the toy piano concert in the Libbey Park playground, the surprise appearance of the marching band last year, and early morning concerts at Meditation Mount. What strikes me over and over is the profound humility of the musicians when they take their bow, show their delight, and rejoice in the intimacy of the audience.

OMF: You have served on many non-profit boards and are often asked to serve; what made you choose the Ojai Music Festival?

DN: My willingness to join and support the Festival comes from a deep love of music and my belief in the power of creativity to change the face of the world. As a result, I make personal investments in organizations whose intent it is to advance the common good.

There is nothing quite like Ojai where this level of creativity is inserted in the beauty of the Ojai Valley, where the mountains and the music are in harmony. The most talented artists come together here to express their potential and give us that gift. I have traveled and visited many festivals on other continents…None compare to the experience of the Ojai Music Festival.

OMF: What are you looking for when you join a board?

DN: When I think about joining a board, I think about my passion for the mission of the organization, and I expect the same drive, commitment, and enthusiasm from my fellow board members. On the Ojai Music Festival board, I have found a group that professes a love of the mission and whose eyes light up as soon as we talk about Tom’s programming. This group is intellectually alive, deeply committed financially, and anxious to know about the next innovation.

In Ojai, we have a committed board, extraordinary artistic direction with Tom Morris, and an exceptional guide in [executive director] Janneke Straub.

OMF: Your consulting firm is well-known for facilitating company and organizational growth through effective leadership and long-term strategies. What would you say today’s challenges are for arts non-profit organizations?

DN: The challenges of all arts organizations today are relevance to the communities they serve and financial viability. Neither will hold back the Ojai Music Festival, which is the most deserving arts organization in Southern California. It is my hope as the new president, that California and beyond will continue to support the enormous innovations that are happening in Ojai.

Read about Nygren Consulting >>

Enjoy Concerts From The Festival With Our Live Stream Library

Friday Evening Concert - June 13, 2014
Friday Evening Concert - June 13, 2014

World Premiere of 'The Classical Style: An Opera (of sorts)'. Libretto: Jeremy Denk, Composer: Steven Stucky

Thursday Evening Concert - June 12, 2014
Thursday Evening Concert - June 12, 2014

Pianist Jeremy Denk performs at the 68th Ojai Music Festival at Libbey Bowl followed by "Mahler Reimagined" with the Uri Caine Ensemble.

Saturday Morning Concert - June 14, 2014
Saturday Morning Concert - June 14, 2014

Music of Charles Ives with Jeremy Denk, Jennifer Frautschi and Hudson Shad

2014 Ojai Music Festival - The Knights, Storm Large and Hudson Shad
2014 Ojai Music Festival - The Knights, Storm Large and Hudson Shad

2014 Ojai Music Festival - "Jupiter" Symphony and "Canonade"
2014 Ojai Music Festival - "Jupiter" Symphony and "Canonade"

The 2014 Festival morning concert featured The Knights performing Mozart's "Jupiter" Symphony followed by the second half called “Canonade” conceived by Music Director Jeremy Denk as “a mélange of musical canons and canon-esque miscellaney” with selected works by Josquin, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann, Kurtág, Purcell, P.D.Q. Bach, Uri Caine, and J.S. Bach.

2014 Ojai Music Festival - Friday Late Night with Uri Caine Sextet
2014 Ojai Music Festival - Friday Late Night with Uri Caine Sextet

Pianist/Composer Uri Caine and his Uri Caine Sextet reimagine the music of George Gershwin including "Rhapsody in Blue" at the ever-popular Late Nights at Libbey Bowl during the 2014 Ojai Music Festival.

2014 Ojai Music Festival - Friday Late Night with Uri Caine Sextet
2014 Ojai Music Festival - Saturday Late Night
2014 Ojai Music Festival - Saturday Late Night

Violinist Jennifer Frautschi opens the Saturday Late Night concert with a performance of Bach's Violin Sonata No. 3, followed by Morton Feldman's 'Rothko Chapel', performed by the Ojai Festival Singers and members of The Knights, led by Robert Spano.

Use the drop-downs to view program information:

Thursday Talks - June 12, 2014 - coming soon!

1:00 PM – Ojai Community Church

Part I: Festival Overview with Jeremy Denk
Part II: An Ensemble for the 21st Century: The Musician’s View
with Eric and Colin Jacobsen, founders of The Knights
Ara Guzelimian, Ojai Talks director

Thursday Evening Concert - June 12, 2014

8:00 PM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

Jeremy Denk, piano
Uri Caine Ensemble

Selections from Janáček’s On An Overgrown Path interwoven with short works by Schubert
URI CAINE: Mahler Re-Imagined – The music of Gustav Mahler viewed through Uri Caine’s lens of transformation and improvisation

Friday Talks - June 13, 2014

1:00 PM – Ojai Community Church

The Classical Style: Impact and Implications
Part I: Jeremy Denk on Charles Rosen
Part II: An in-depth panel discussion on the award-winning book, The Classical Style, with Timo Andres and Don M. Randel
Part III: Mary Birnbaum, director, and Steven Stucky, composer

Friday Evening Concert - June 13, 2014

8:00 PM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

HAYDN: String Quartet in G minor, Op. 74, No.3, “Rider”
JEREMY DENK / STEVEN STUCKY: The Classical Style: An Opera (of Sorts)- WORLD PREMIERE


Friday Late Night Concert - June 13, 2014

10:30 PM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

Uri Caine Sextet

The music of George Gershwin, including Rhapsody in Blue, reimagined and improvised by Uri Caine

Saturday Morning Concert - June 14, 2014

11:00 AM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

Jennifer Frautschi, violin
Jeremy Denk, piano

IVES: Sonatas for Violin and Piano, Nos. 1-4 (complete)

Saturday Evening Concert I - June 14, 2014 - coming soon!

6:00 PM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

Jeremy Denk, piano
Timo Andres, piano
Alex Sopp, flute
Colin Jacobsen, violin
Miranda Sielaff, viola
Eric Jacobsen, cello

The Knights
Eric Jacobsen, conductor

ANDREW NORMAN: Light Screens
MOZART / TIMO ANDRES: Coronation Concerto Re-composition

Saturday Evening Concert II - June 14, 2014 - coming soon!

8:00 PM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

Storm Large, vocalist
Hudson Shad Quartet
The Knights
Eric Jacobsen, conductor

BOCCHERINI (arr. The Knights): String Quintet in C major Op. 30, No. 6 – “La musica Notturna delle Strade di Madrid”
IVES: Three Places in New England (1930 version)
FELDMAN: Madame Press Died Last Week at Ninety
STOCKHAUSEN (arr. Caroline Shaw): Tierkreis – Leo
WEILL: Seven Deadly Sins (in English)


Saturday Late Night Concert - June 14, 2014

10:30 PM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

Jennifer Frautschi, violin
Members of The Knights
- Max Mandel, viola
- Joseph Gramley, percussion
- Steven Beck, celesta
Ojai Festival Singers
Robert Spano, conductor

J.S. BACH: Violin Sonata No. 3 in C major, BWV 1005
FELDMAN: Rothko Chapel

Sunday Morning Concert - June 15, 2014

11:00 AM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

Timo Andres, piano
Jeremy Denk, piano
Lisa Kaplan, piano
Uri Caine Ensemble
Hudson Shad

The Knights
Eric Jacobsen, conductor

MOZART: Symphony No. 41 in C major, K. 551, “Jupiter”
Canonade: A “mélange of musical canons and canon-esque miscellaney” with selected works by Josquin, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann, Kurtág, Purcell, P.D.Q. Bach, Uri Caine, and J.S. Bach

Sunday Evening Concert - June 15, 2014

5:30 PM – Libbey Bowl, Ojai, CA

Jeremy Denk, piano
Ojai Festival Singers
The Knights
Kevin Fox, Eric Jacobsen, conductors

LIGETI: Piano Études Books I & II
IVES: Psalm 90
BEETHOVEN: Fantasy in C Minor for Piano, Chorus, and Orchestra, Op.80, “Choral Fantasy”


2014 Festival Audience Survey Results

Each year, the Festival conducts an audience survey as an ongoing effort to measure various aspects of our own performance and receive feedback from patrons. Below are the results from this past Festival in June. We strive to improve our efforts and appreciate our Festival community’s interest in our forward plans.

We welcome any additional comments and observations. Please email us at info@ojaifestival.org or write your comments below.


Survey invitations were e-mailed to 2014 Festival attendees the week following the event. Of a total of 678 delivered, 323 were returned for a response rate of 48%.

Survey 1

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survey slide 2

survey slide 8

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 Ratings for the following:

1. Food Trucks on Friday Night:

  • Excellent 16%
  • Good 41%
  • Adequate 18%
  • Fair 13%
  • Poor 12%
  • Comments: Just didn’t have time to try the food trucks and would love to have done so….perhaps more than one night; more food truck varieties; more places to sit

2. Saturday Supper at Libbey Park

  • Excellent 45%
  • Good 33%
  • Adequate 17%
  • Fair 2%
  • Poor 3%

3. Live Streaming

  • Excellent 21%
  • Good 56%
  • Adequate 18%
  • Fair 3%
  • Poor 2%
  • Comments: Live streaming and intermission interviews seen after returning home; loved it!

4. Gathering Place in Libbey Park

  • Excellent 41%
  • Good 45%
  • Adequate 11%
  • Fair 2%
  • Poor 1%

View complete PDF >>


Selections of Enthusiastic Patrons’ Memorable Moments
There were so many memorable moments that were shared. Here are several to read online, or read 2014 Selections of Memorable Moments

Hands down: The Classical Style. We loved it and wished we could sit through it twice. (Two of us are trained musically; the third, just a music lover.) Next I’d have to say Jeremy Denk playing the Ligeti Etudes.

I wished I could spend all four days in Ojai. The organization was perfect. Enough restrooms, very clean. I watched afterwards the videos and the program and artists are outstanding. Also very funny especially my first language is German.

Listening to the musicians at the Gazebo on Friday and hearing Storm.

Lying with my young son under the giant oak on the lawn listening to Mozart on a gorgeous Sunday morning and getting a picture that captured the moment – smiles all around.

Sitting in the middle of the choir at Sunday Sunrise concert.  My whole body was immersed in the sound, and my soul was deeply touched by the power of the voices around me.

Both Late night concerts were excellent.  I loved the discussions on Thu and Fri but must admit that I liked Jeremy’s discussion of the idea of the opera more than the opera itself.  Brooklyn Rider and that venue were amazing but so was Sun morning at Meditation Mount and I am not a choral lover usually.

Sunday morning: sitting in that beautiful bowl with the trees and their dappled sunlight and listening to Mozart and the bird’s responses.  It was exquisite.

 

5 Things to Expect In 2015 Including Pipa Player Wu Man

ICE

The “hot” ensemble heading to Ojai next year will be ICE (International Chamber Ensemble).

Artistic Director Thomas W. Morris and Music Director Steven Schick have a lot to share about the 2015 Ojai Music Festival these next 11 months. Plans are underway and we thought we’d give you a glimpse of 5 things to get you started.

1. Performances of works by 19 living composers new to Ojai. Read more about it here >>

2. The West Coast premiere of John Luther Adam’s Sila: The Breath of the World. Learn more about his new outdoor work which makes its world premiere at the Lincoln Center Out of Doors. Click here >>

3. Festival debuts by ICE (International Contemporary Ensemble), pipa virtuoso Wu Man,  cellist Maya Beiser, and San Diego based chamber ensemble Renga

4. Schick Machine directed by Paul Dresher performed by Steven Schick – a visually compelling world of mechanical devices, invented instruments, and seemingly infinite sonic possibilities. Watch here >>

5. A special pre-Festival event on Wednesday, June 10 of Pierre Boulez: A Portrait, a spectacular multi-media kaleidoscope production with narration, archive films clips, live music, and stage set by Frank Gehry, part of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Beyond the Score series.

There is so much more to share. Stay tuned as more details are in the works!

Save your seat for an intriguing program of music, talks, events, films, and more. Buy Online >>

Call us at 805 646 2053 for questions about seats or our payment plan.