2022 Santa Barbara Music Club Scholarship Showcase


By Bonnie Carroll

What an unexpected gift I experienced accepting an invitation from the parents of a scholarship recipient who was performing at the Santa Barbara Music Club 2022 Scholarship Showcase Concert I. With little knowledge of this organization or their concert history, or generous scholarship programs studies, they offer young musicians in the community I sat down on a pew at the First United Methodist Church, ready to spend a pleasant afternoon of music.

The extremely professional status of the young musicians, aged between 10 and 25, that I had the privilege of seeing perform was so breathtaking. I really had no idea that we had this treasure trove of extremely well trained and talented young musicians among us in Santa Barbara. Each young performer gave a powerful performance and they were so charming.

Adam Kabaretti, 11, son of Nir and Gaja Kabaretti, performed Gavotte 1 in D major, Gavotte 1 in D minor. Adam’s performance on violin was accompanied by his father Nir Kabaretti, music and artistic director of the Santa Barbara Symphony Orchestra on piano, and they were both exceptional. The balance, discipline and professionalism of all these young performers is so impressive and inspiring. After the program, I had the pleasure of meeting Adam’s violin teacher, Valérie Malinni.

Thirty-three SBMC Scholars ages 10-25, awards ranging from $200-$300 in incentive awards up to a top award of $1,250 included the Ellen Reidel Memorial Scholarship – Noelle Hadsall, 13, piano, Nathan Rundlett Memorial Vocal Scholarship – Cambria Metzinger, 25, mezzo-soprano, Liana Rodriguez, 22, soprano, Emil Torick Memorial Scholarship – Zephan Bornfreund, 18, violin, Adam Kabaretti, 11, violin, Seungyoo Kim-Jung, 10 years old, violin, Emmanuel Malpica, 13 years old, violin, Sofia Malvinni, 17 years old, violin, Milo Rencher, 14 years old, violin, Sophie Saleh, 16 years old, violin, Scholarship from the Santa Barbara Music Club – Aria Abraham, 15 years old, flute, Ellen Butler, 14, piano, Zahra Clark, 15, violin, Holly Hadsall, 17, piano, Landon Hellman, 17, piano, Fallyn Lee, 16, piano, Miranda Li, 11, piano, Ella McGowan, 12, viola, Anna-Sung Park, 17, oboe, Oliver Saleh, 15, trumpet, Zeyn Schweyk, 17, piano, Elisha Wu, 10, piano, Anna Butler, 15, piano, Victoria Chen, 15, piano, Leon Guo, 13, piano, Nathaniel Hadsall, 15, piano, Elaine Hu, 13, piano, Lauren Lee, 15, piano, Joseph Malvinni, 14, guitar, Chloe Merrick, 16, flute, Simon Rencher, 14, viola, Rhyan, Schweyk, 16, piano, Eliana Stephens, 11, cello.

Eric Valinsky, SBMC President, Pianist (Photo: Bonnie Carroll)

Eric Valinsky, President of the Santa Barbara Music Club, shared how grateful he is to the Board of Directors, Scholars, parents and generous sponsors for the very important role they play in the growth of these young musicians, many of whom have gone on to pursue careers in the music industry. For decades, the SBMC has supported deserving students of instrumental and vocal music in Santa Barbara County.

The scholarships are made possible through the generosity of donors who wish to help and encourage outstanding music students from local schools and teaching studios who promise to become our future soloists, orchestral musicians, opera singers and other professionals music. The 2022 Scholarship Auditions were held in person this year and the subsequent Scholarship Showcase Concert #I was held on June 4 and the next Concert #II on June 11 at the First United Methodist Church.

The mission of the Santa Barbara Music Club is to contribute to the musical life of the community by: Presenting an annual series of concerts, free to the public, featuring outstanding performances of solo and chamber music by performing members and guests; Presenting community outreach activities, including bringing great music to residents of area retirement homes; To aid and encourage music education through the payment of scholarships to talented local music students.

Founded in 1969, the Santa Barbara Music Club has grown from a private women’s club to a nine-month public series of classical music concerts. The Music Club is proud of what it has become and is supported by membership dues, generous donations, bequests and grants. Concerts are free to the public, thereby attracting and serving a demographic not normally seen in concert halls: low- and middle-income people who could not otherwise afford to attend music concerts. live classical music in a comfortable and accessible setting. In addition, the Music Club offers awareness concerts in senior centers and homes for those who cannot attend these concerts. Financial support for SBMC’s 50th Anniversary Season was provided by the City of Santa Barbara’s Organizational Development Grant Program and the Towbes Fund for the Performing Arts, a Santa Barbara Foundation interest fund.

Bi-monthly concerts are held Saturdays at 3 p.m. at the Faulkner Gallery in the Downtown Public Library and First United Methodist Church at the corner of Garden and Anapamu streets. Artists range from dedicated and gifted local amateurs and semi-professionals to students and faculty at UC Santa Barbara and Westmont College to international artists. All share a connection and love of Santa Barbara as well as a dedication to classical music and performance. Whether it’s a polished, world-class rendition or a most valiant effort, performances are presented with great energy and spirit and audiences respond with enthusiasm and appreciation. World-class artists, students, teachers and enthusiasts enthusiastically donate their performances. The series is organized by the SBMC Concert Committee, currently co-chaired by composer-pianist Leslie Hogan and pianist Betty Oberacker.

For membership or general information please visit www.sbmusicclub.org.

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