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Arts watch: Making it to Carnegie Hall, plus Boston Brass at the Shaghoian … and more


Carnegie Hall is a busy place these days when it comes to Fresno connections. Contralto Sharmay Musacchio, a graduate of Roosevelt High School, is making her debut in the hall with a concert with the New England Symphonic Ensemble on Monday, April 13. She’ll be singing Vivaldi’s Gloria in D major. According to her bio:

Musacchio has soloed with Sarasota Opera, Portland Opera/IVAI, California Opera Association, and San Diego Chamber Orchestra. She performed Dido in “Les Troyens,” Meg Page in “Falstaff,” Pauline in “The Queen of Spades,” Tigrana in “Edgar,” and Tisbe in “La Cenerentola” with Sarasota Opera. She covered The Dragon role in “Grendel” and debuted (as one of the maidens) in Los Angeles Opera’s production of “The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny,” which won two Grammies in 2009.

And on April 1, the Fresno Pacific University Community Wind Ensemble, directed by Patricia DeBenedetto, performed at the hall as part of the New York Band & Orchestra Festival. The group was joined by the Long Island Youth Orchestra and the University of Louisville Wind Ensemble.

The group will perform again 7:30 p.m. April 14 at Sunnyside High School.

One of the pieces on the program, “From Alpha to Omega, Prelude and Fugue X,” was written by Walter Saul, an FPU professor. This is the second time Saul’s music has been performed in Carnegie Hall in the past 6 years.

It’s the brasses’ turn to shine Tuesday, April 14 at the Shaghoian Concert Hall on the Clovis North High School campus. The renowned Boston Brass, an ensemble of five talented players, will be a highlight of Fresno City College’s “Annual Brass Bash.” The concert begins at 7 p.m. Tickets ($10) are available through the Clovis Unified School District. Contact Bill, call (559) 327-9644, or tickets may be available at the door.

Every year, this long-standing Fresno organization (founded in 1905!) gives awards to young artists. The Fresno Musical Club awards were presented at ceremonies March 7 and 28. Spokesperson Ginny Oustad reports the winners:

  • The Fresno Young Vocalist winners were: Julia Grizzell, Isaac Villanueva, Guy Barnes and Joshua Bear.
  • The Susan Torres awards were given to pianists Franky Leung Man-Jun, Christopher Guerriero and honorable mentions Renny Sie, Summer Ohm and Michael Krikorian.
  • The Bell T. Ritchie Award and Betty Iacovatti awards were given to Emily Nenniger, violin; Craig Bate, viola; Katherine Howell, soprano; Alina Ilchuk, soprano; Jeran Brown, baritone; and Jillian Yu, flute.
  • The Rose Pollack awards were won by Niccole Modell, flute; Melissa Garner, clarinet; and Ryan Terronez, trombone.

From Monday’s Bee:

Tickets go on sale today for “Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs,” which is opening a nine-month run at San Francisco’s de Young Museum. The exhibition opens June 27 and runs through March 28, 2010.

The exhibit features 50 of Tutankhamun’s burial objects, along with dozens of everday objects from tombs of 18th Dynasty royals. All of the items are more than 3,000 years old.

This encore tour came to the West Coast in 2005 for a stop at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. It features new items such as two nested cofinettes.


The Fresno Center for Nonviolence, 1584 N. Van Ness, Fresno, will present two movies in April. For information call the Center at (559) 237-3223 or Angela at (559) 435-6383. From the center:

  • Wednesday, April 8, 12 Noon & 7:00 PM. (Potluck at 6:30) FREE. At the Center, 1584 N. Van Ness, Fresno, Monthly Every Second Wednesday Video Presentation: “Compelled by Conscience” by the Peace Tax Foundation. It is an excellent summary intended for both newcomers and activists. It explains the ideal of the Religious Freedom Peace Tax Fund Bill in its historical and current context. Leaders and ordinary people from across the religious and political spectrum explain why there is a need to enable citizens to pay their taxes without violating their conscience. 60 minutes. A discussion following the video will be led by Pastor Steve Ratzlaff. FREE. Wheelchair accessible.
  • Monday, April 13, 7:00 PM (Doors open 6:30) at the Clovis Veterans’ Memorial Building , 808 Fourth Street , Clovis. The Fresno Center for Nonviolence sponsors a dynamic multimedia presentation of “9/11: Blueprint for Truth: the Architecture of Destruction.” This informative and controversial film and slide show is the work of Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, a non-profit organization of more than 600 architects and engineers who have examined the forensic evidence at the World Trade Center high-rise collapses and are calling for a new, independent 9/11 investigation of the destruction of all three skyscrapers. The film will be introduced by Dennis Payton, a California registered Civil Engineer. Q and A session will follow, with discussion available. Bring a skeptical friend and some challenging questions. For more information please visit FREE admission. Wheelchair accessible.

Art Coelho and Maxine Olson, both Fresno County natives, are part of “Twice Removed,” an exhibition featuring Portuguese-American artists that opens Thursday, April 9 at the Boston Public Library. The artists belong to the Portuguese-American Artist Association. Here’s the cover of the show’s catalog:


Responses to "Arts watch: Making it to Carnegie Hall, plus Boston Brass at the Shaghoian … and more"

Sue LaFleur says:

Thank you Mr. Munro,
For letting Fresno know that one of there own has made it in the Arts. I have been priviledged to know Ms. Musacchio all of her life. She is an exceptional young lady,with the most beautiful voice I have ever heard. Sharmay your Auntie Sue is so very very proud of you. I will be thinking of you on April 13th. Sing you heart out. Hugs and kisses to you.
Love you very much,

Auntie Sue

Connie & Dave Musacchio says:

We still have special memories of you singing when you were only 3yrs old. Look where you are now…what an accomplishment! We are so proud of you Sharmay!
Love you,
Mom and Dad

Brent Moser says:

Thanks to Donald…for continuously spreading the good word about all of the wonderful cultural events happening in our community.

Maxine Olson says:

Thank you Don for mentioning the show in Boston and introducing me to this website as well…