Backstage at Bret Harte High School’s Per-forming Arts Theater, the five University of the Pacific students composing the Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet took a few minutes to unwind, relax and munch on some snacks provided by the Calaveras Arts Council before the start of their performance.
The young musicians – Malachi Whitson, Paul Bloom, Rane Roatta, Adam Goldman and Tom Kelly – officially marked the start of the Arts Council’s 32nd year of its popular Ovations series.
“I believe this is our first time in Calaveras County,” said Nick Fryer, the Institute’s associate director. “This theater is a really great performance space. In the current economic climate it’s great to see people appreciating the arts. We’re happy to be here.”
Whitson echoed Fryer’s sentiments, commenting on the region’s “beautiful scenery.”
Bringing outstanding performing arts acts like the Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet to Calaveras County is nothing new. Mary Jane Genochio, current Arts Council executive director, and Penny West, the council’s former director, reminisced on the different groups they’ve brought to the county and the success they’ve achieved.