SANCTUARY SERIES Pre-Concert Conversations

Last season Jacaranda inaugurated the Sanctuary Series pre-concert conversations to celebrate our 15th anniversary and to deepen the Jacaranda experience! The roster included a climate scientist from Rand, Julius Eastman’s friend & biographer, a young brain researcher born in Nicaragua, two musicians who tackle the “impossible,” and the incoming Spanish-born artistic director of the Los Angeles Children’s Chorus.

The idea is to talk about subjects related to the musical program and expand the conversational space around its organizing theme. The 16th season …dream in color will explore:

The Jacaranda experience is more than classical concert going. The room has stunning acoustics and wrap-around seating with comfortable pews. Two lobbies and a welcoming courtyard encourage social interaction and sharing. So does the free coffee and cookies at intermission. Program notes are extensive and include fascinating cultural, political and often unexpected historical information that sets a rich context for the music. Brief verbal introductions welcome the audience and performers. The performance standard is exceptionally high with powerful music that can generate peak moments. To the Jacaranda experience we have added the Sanctuary Series pre-concert conversations at 7pm, unless otherwise announced. Please join us.


October 20, 2018
Sanctuary, First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica
7:00 pm

Alex Purves, author of Space and Time in Ancient Greek Narrative (2010, Cambridge university Press), Synaesthesia and the Ancient Greek Senses (2013, Acumen Press) and the forthcoming Homer and the Poetics of Gesture (2019, Oxford University Press), is a classics scholar at UCLA specializing in Homer.

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November 2, 2018
Wende Museum of the Cold War
7:00 pm

Chief Curator of the Wende Museum of the Cold War, Joes Segal authored Art and Politics: Between Purity and Propaganda (2016), and co-authored Divided Dreamworlds? The Cultural Cold War in East and West (2010), both published by Amsterdam University Press. He formerly taught at UCLA and Utrecht University.


February 3, 2019
Sanctuary, First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica

Russell Steinberg, composer, conductor and educator, inspires audiences to deepen their passion for classical music through engaging pre-concert talks at Walt Disney Concert Hall, and an annual lecture series. He has published a series of text-supported audio downloads exploring five Mahler symphonies, including the Sixth.

2017-18 AWAKE


October 21, 2017

Sanctuary, First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica
7:00 pm

RAND Corporation’s Nobel Prize-winning climate scientist Robert Lempert and Jacaranda Board Chair and Mayor of Culver City Thomas Small discussed climate challenges to Santa Monica, and other shoreline cities, as well as parallels to a growing interest in micro-tonality as an alternative to equal temperament.


January 20, 2018

Sanctuary, First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica
7:00 pm

Author Renee Levine Packer discussed her books Gay Guerilla: Julius Eastman and his Music, and This Life of Sounds: Evenings for New Music in Buffalo, based on her first hand knowledge of the special milieu in which Eastman and Frederic Rzewski composed their socially conscious classics.

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February 24, 2018

Rehwold Chapel, First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica
7:00 pm

Joel Salinas, MD, author of Mirror Touch: Notes from a Doctor Who Can Feel Your Pain (2017) discussed his personal experiences with multiple forms of synesthesia, and related them to Olivier Messiaen’s color hearing.


March 17, 2018

Sanctuary, First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica
7:00 pm

Pianist Steven Vanhauwaert recounted his year-long epic journey of discovery to perform the legendary Piano Sonata by Messiaen student Jean Barraqué. He demonstrated from the piano and talked about the very few shoulders he can stand on to bring this historic rarity to life.

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May 19, 2018

Sanctuary, First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica
7:00 pm

Regional Accents celebrated three generations of Spanish music from De Falla to today. Fernando Malvar-Ruiz discussed the changing political environment in Spain, and how it affects arts and culture.