A MUSIC ACADEMY CALENDAR

Nearly 140 advanced pre-professional musicians will spend the next eight weeks at the Music Academy of the West's Miraflores campus here in Montecito studying with almost 50 faculty members and guests brought in from around the country – and performing at just shy of 200 events throughout the summer.

The season began last Monday, and we’re skipping an issue at the MJ this week, so here are some highlights of the next two weeks at the Academy.

Friday, June 22

Vocal Masterclass with John Churchwell (3 pm, Abravanel Hall) – Every vocal class at the Music Academy is an event, each led by a different member of MAW’s distinguished faculty. Churchwell, assistant conductor for the Metropolitan Opera and a member of the music staff of the San Francisco Opera also enjoys a recital career and is a seven-year veteran of MAW.

Saturday, June 23

Community Concert (7 pm, Santa Barbara Bowl) – Celebrate MAW’s big anniversary with John Williams conducting the Academy Festival Orchestra in a program that spotlights some of his famous film scores (“Jaws,” “Star Wars,” “E.T.”), plus Williams’ violin concerto (with Gil Shaham as soloist) and Shostakovich’s Festive Overture. “Even though he’s not an alumnus, we thought bringing one of the world’s great composer-conductors to town for the first time would be a wonderful gift to give to Santa Barbara,” said MAW president Nancybell Coe.

Tuesday, June 26

Vocal Masterclass with Fred Carama (3 pm, Abravanel) – Carama, associate professor at Manhattan and Aspen and former chair of the voice department at California Institute of the Arts, has been MAW’s vocal coach tailoring the young artists’ performances in the opera since 2003. Also, the first Tuesdays @ 8 concert (Lobero) features two decidedly different trios (Poulenc’s for piano, oboe and bassoon; and Brahms’ Horn Trio in E-flat major) plus Dohnanyi’s Piano Quintet No. 1 in C Minor. Each of the 11 musicians plays a single piece in the first entry of a new outlook in programming that aims to bring as many different artists on stage each evening as possible.

Wednesday, June 27

Masterclass sampler (7:30 pm, Lehmann) – The one and only event of its kinds in 2007 (scaled back to “give the students a respite in performing,” said Coe), the sampler is the only evening masterclass of the season. Three different instruments are featured to give the audience an early-season taste of what Coe and others consider “the heart of the academy’s Summer Festival.”

Friday, June 29

Picnic concert (7:30 pm, Abravanel) – Come early to enjoy your own supper al fresco in the gardens adjacent to the concert hall prior to the season’s first chamber music concert featuring academy students. Programming available on the day of the concert.

Saturday, June 30

Vocal masterclass with Warren Jones (3 pm, Lobero) – A special Saturday session featuring the renowned pianist widely considered one of the finest accompanists working today, offering insight into the interplay between singer and instrumentalist. Also, Academy Festival Orchestra conducted by David Robertson (8 pm, Lobero) Orli Shaham is the soloist for John Adams’ “Century Rolls,” paired in this adventurous program with Nielsen’s Symphony No. 5.

Tuesday, July 3

Vocal masterclass with Lotfi Mansouri (3pm, Abravanel) – The MAW alumnus and San Francisco Opera’s veteran general director (now emeritus) is back once again to weave his stage magic with the academy’s singers. Also, Tuesdays @ 8 (Lobero) offers a wildly divergent program ranging from Joan Tower’s “Petroushskates” to Ligeti’s “Six Bagatelles for Wind Quintet” to a Bartok sonata to MAW student singers performing selections from the Great American Songbook. Fourteen faculty members plus the young artists will perform.

(Tickets for all events are available at the Music Academy box office, or call 805-969-8787 or visit www.musicacademy.org.)