Women's Auxiliary Annual Luncheon held in Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, CA — The Women's Auxiliary of the Music Academy of the West held their annual luncheon at La Cumbre Country Club on June 14. The long-standing fundraising organization honored the outgoing Board of Directors and Committee Chairs, installed new officers, and welcomed new members. 78 Women’s Auxiliary members and Music Academy administration were in attendance at the lovely event organized by outgoing Vice-Chair Judy Weisman. Music Academy President and CEO, Scott Reed, Chief Advancement Officer, Jon Bishop, and Board Member Eileen Sheridan addressed the group.

 Women’s Auxiliary renewing chair Evie Vesper

Women’s Auxiliary renewing chair Evie Vesper

The Women’s Auxiliary was formed in 1954, to support the Music Academy of the West through fundraising and educational activities, and to help promote knowledge and appreciation of the Academy in the community at large. It will present an innovative new fundraiser Music in the Gardens, World Rhythms on Sunday, October 21 at 3 pm on the Music Academy campus.

The new Executive Committee of the Women’s Auxiliary Board: Chair, Evie Vesper; Vice-Chair, Diane Pannkuk; Recording Secretary, Karen Frishman; Corresponding Secretary, Guillimette Holder; Treasurer, Ann Sarkis; Assistant Treasurer, Christine Leveque; Ways and Means Co-Chairs, Lois Pigg and Lida Souza; Membership Co-Chairs, Judy Astbury and Melissa Hillegas; Governance, Patty Medina; and Ex-Officio Officer, Holiday Vail.

The Women’s Auxiliary Class of 2018: Leslie Armstrong, Susan Allen, Elizabeth Badart, Debra Cochrane Vercammen, Sue Giehart, Gloria Hallier, Mary Hitchcock, Cynthia Hobson Kawasaki, Betsy Kehoe, Cynthia McClelland, Julie Miller, Christine Nachman, Katherine O’Donnell, Jean Parry, Martha Reich, Ellen Robinson, Cindy Rossi, Gabriella Schooley, Maya Smidt, and Sandra Walther.

Music in the Gardens

The Women’s Auxiliary of the Music Academy of the West is pleased to introduce Music in the Gardens, World Rhythms - an exciting new event amongst the iconic gardens of the Music Academy of the West. An eclectic program of musicians and dance artists from around the central and south coast will perform international music including Indonesian, Island Rhythms, Middle Eastern, Celtic, French and Italian Folk, and Flamenco/Latino. Patrons may stroll the campus gardens, while sampling intercontinental cuisine along with a perfect complement of wine. Tickets, $125, are on sale now. Order online at musicacademy.org/gardens or contact the Music Academy Carsey Ticket Office at 805-969-8787.


About the Music Academy of the West

The Music Academy of the West is among the nation’s preeminent summer schools and festivals for gifted, young, classically trained musicians. At its ocean-side campus in Santa Barbara, the Academy provides these musicians with the opportunity for advanced study and performance under the guidance of internationally renowned faculty artists, guest conductors, and soloists. Admission to the Academy is strictly merit based, and fellows receive full scholarships (tuition, room, and board). The Academy’s distinguished teaching artists’ roster has included famed soprano Lotte Lehmann, composers Darius Milhaud and Arnold Schoenberg, cellist Gregor Piatigorsky, pianist Jeremy Denk, and Honorary Voice Program Director Marilyn Horne. Academy alumni are members of major symphony orchestras, chamber orchestras, ensembles, opera companies, and university and conservatory faculties throughout the world. Many enjoy careers as prominent solo artists. In 2014 the Music Academy entered into a four-year partnership with the New York Philharmonic, resulting in unprecedented training and performance opportunities for Academy fellows, and Summer Festival residencies for Philharmonic musicians.

The Academy has now launched a new partnership with the London Symphony Orchestra, highlighted by the following:

  • Musicians from the LSO will participate in each Summer Festival.
  • The London Symphony Orchestra will perform in Santa Barbara in 2019 and 2021.
  • Academy fellows will travel to London to perform in concerts with the LSO.
  • Academy competition winners will perform recitals in London.
  • Michael Tilson Thomas will serve as the Signature Festival Conductor of the partnership.
  • Sir Simon Rattle will oversee the fellows’ experience in London.

The Music Academy of the West cultivates discerning, appreciative, and adventurous audiences, presenting more than 200 public events annually. These include performances by faculty, guest artists, and fellows; masterclasses; orchestra and chamber music concerts; and a fully staged opera. The 2018 Summer School and Festival takes place June 18-August 11 at the Academy’s Miraflores campus and in venues throughout Santa Barbara. For more information, visit musicacademy.org.

Photo credit: Phil Channing

Released: Jun 27, 2018



Kate Oberjat

Director of Marketing & Communications

Music Academy of the West




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