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Museum of Making Music

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You haven't fully experienced the harp until you've seen the brilliant work of Deborah Henson-Conant!

To describe her is nearly impossible. She's a cross-genre, Blues-Flamenco-Celtic-Funk-Folk-Jazz dynamo. She tells tall tales with the ease of a stand-up comic.  She solos and wails like a rock guitarist. She turns music into theater and theater into something lyrical. Deborah Hanson-Conant dazzling performance on her signature carbon-fiber electric harp will guarantee you'll never look at the harp the same way again.

Deborah Henson-Conant is a Grammy-Nominated artist who sings and plays the harp, tells stories and composes symphonic music that runs the gamut from bombastic to tender. She has been described as "the wild woman of the harp" by bandleader Doc Severinsen and "the talented love-child of André Previn and Lucille Ball" by NPR's Scott Simon. Her playing ranges from raucous to delicate and her performances blur the line between musical performance and theatrical event.

Deborah herself is impossible to categorize. She has made her own path, composing musical theater since the age of 12, first studying classical harp, then developing her own version of swing and Latin jazz and finally synthesizing all three elements into a new genre of musical performance. Her shows mix jazz, folk and flamenco with a theatrical narrative of storytelling and humor.

Deborah Henson-Conant has toured with the Boston Pops as a guest soloist, premiered her own orchestral works with symphonies throughout the US, toured jazz clubs in Germany and Celtic Festivals in France, opened for Ray Charles at Tanglewood, starred in the PBS special Celtic Harpestry; been featured on NBC, CBS, CNN, NPR and has hosted TV shows for BET and BBC Affiliates. She's been interviewed by Charlie Rose, Joan Rivers, Billy Taylor, Studs Terkel, Scott Simon, Jamie Gangel, and Susan Stamberg. She's the Grammy-Nominated artist and star of "Invention & Alchemy," her one-woman show with full orchestra, which debuted on PBS stations nationwide in March 2007.

Henson-Conant has revolutionized her instrument. She's brought vibrant passion and individuality to its sound -- and in the process she herself has been transformed. Her work is an exploration of possibilities -- a transformation that moves her audience out of the ordinary and into the extraordinary. If you're one of those people who thinks a harp is meant to soothe the savage beast, think again - this time it's the savage beast who's PLAYING the darned thing!

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In a rare U.S. performance, the Museum is proud to welcome renowned French harpist, Isabelle Moretti. Moretti's solo repertoire extends from the music of the eighteenth century and the first sonatas for pedal harp, to the most complex contemporary world premieres, which she frequently programs in her recitals. In this intimate solo concert, Moretti takes her audience on a journey to experience her colorful world of the pedal harp.

Isabelle Moretti is one of the most appealing figures both among harpists and in the musical world today. Bright, enthusiastic and with real temperament, she imbues her instrument with inimitable style, generosity, sincerity and nobility.

Crowned with prizes at international harp competitions in Geneva, Munich and Israel, Isabelle Moretti is invited to the greatest concert halls all over the world. She appears with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra (most recently under the baton of Sir Neville Marriner), the National Orchestra of Lyon, the Paris Orchestral Ensemble, the German Chamber Orchestra Bremen, the Israel Chamber Orchestra, the Orquestra de Córdoba, the Spanish Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra and the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.

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In partnership with South Coast Winery, the Museum is proud to welcome San Diego hit songwriter, Jack Tempchin.

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of his most popular song, Jack has partnered with South Coast Winery to develop his own Peaceful Easy Feeling Cabernet Sauvignon. This event pairs his sweet tunes like "Peaceful Easy Feeling" and "Slow Dancing" with the velvety, black cherry aromas of this drinkable Cabernet Sauvignon produced and bottled locally in Temecula, CA. In addition to a full-length concert, guests will be treated to a complimentary glass of wine and light bites. Proceeds from this event will benefit the Museum of Making Music's education programs.

Come join Jack for a night of wine and song!

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On Friday, June 7, 2013, the Museum of Making Music presents its popular Local Flavor Concert Series combining up-and-coming Southern California artists in an intimate concert setting with local food and beverages generously provided by Stone Brewing Company, Flippin' Pizza, and Knockout Pizza.

This concert features the music of San Diego singer/songwriter Tolan Shaw.  Tickets are $10.  Food service begins at 6 PM.

Tolan Shaw is an accomplished singer/songwriter from San Diego, crafting songs based on travel and life experiences. He is better known for his work with the San Diego based band, The New Archaic, as the frontman. The band won Best New Artist at the 2009 San Diego Music Awards. In 2010 they received another San Diego Music Award nomination for Best Alternative Album on their debut full-length Movers and Fakers, and were in high demand to perform at San Diego's most well known venues, opening for international acts such as Switchfoot, Dashboard Confessional, and Third Eye Blind.

Tolan's solo work is inspired by travel, spiritual discoveries, nature, and big questions of life. He sees music as a way to delve deeper into his own journey through life and to connect with others, writing directly from the heart. Though differing from the music of The New Archaic, Tolan's solo performance is equally as captivating, exposing raw emotion and soul and brimming with dynamics. Tolan began to refine his solo show in 2009, putting on standing room only performances at local coffeehouses and opening for touring artists such as Matt Costa, Jon Foreman, and The Format.

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Before it made its way to jazz, the saxophone already had a prominent place in classical music.  After the saxophone was developed in the late 1800s, it was incorporated into compositions by Debussy, Glazounov, and many more great composers.  

This program, put together by Yamaha artist and saxophone expert, Thomas Liley, explores the depth and breadth of the saxophone in classical music.  Liley will be joined by pianist Matthew Gianforte as they perform pieces from Mozart, Feld, Debussy and Piazzolla.  The program also features educational commentary on the saxophone's role in classical repertoire.

Tickets to this event are $15 for general admission, $10 for museum members, and $8 for students.

This event is supported in part by Yamaha Corporation of America.

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On Saturday, September 8, 2012 at 7 PM, the Museum of Making Music presents the Global Spotlight Concert Series featuring premier Celtic violinist, Jamie Laval, who will showcase the traditional music of Scotland, Ireland, and Brittany.  Jamie will be joined by multi-instrumentalist Zac Leger.

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On Saturday, August 25, 2012 at 7 PM, the Museum of Making Music presents the Global Spotlight Concert Series featuring kora virtuoso Amadou Fall.  Amadou will be joined by guitarist Ibrahima Ba during the program.

Tickets are $25; $20 for Museum Members and $18 for students.  

For more information or to purchase tickets, please call 760-438-5996.


Kora virtoso Amadou Fall is a native to Senegal, West Africa and comes from a family of musicians.  His father, Mamadou Fall, was a guitarist who played with several well-known Senegalese musicians including Baba Maal.

While he was growing up, Amadou's family lived near a city of griots (West African storytellers and keepers of tradition).  He often visited the griots and was taught how to play a few songs on the kora, a 21-stringed harp-like instrument that is made from fishing line, wood, calabash (gourd) and cow skin.  Amadou fell deeply in love with the instrument and went back to his city to build himself one from scratch. He started his journey of mastering the art of playing kora from the little he had learned, and the rest has been self-taught.

Amadou has been playing kora for 20 years now, and has performed with various artists such as Baba Maal, Fatou Lowbe, Ibrahim Ba, Djembe Rhythm, Irene Tassambendo and many more. He has played extensively on the African continent (Senegal, Mauritania, Congo, Burkina Faso, Mali, Togo, Benin, Ivory Coast and Nouadibou). He has also been sought out and played in other parts of the world such as France, Belgium, Italy, Hungary, England and the United States.  Amadou has also participated in several recorded albums for music artists from around the globe.

Amadou Fall currently resides in California where he hopes to bring people from all walks of life together in peace with music from Africa, all through the breath-taking sounds of his kora.

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On Saturday, August 11, the Museum of Making Music hosts a special benefit concert in support of the Museum's programs featuring Yamaha artist Robert Kyle and his Brazilian Quartet with Hussain Jiffry on bass, Capital on guitar & vocals, and Simon Carroll on percussion. 


At 6 PM, the Museum will host a special wine & cheese reception where you'll have the opportunity to meet and greet the Museum's Advisory Board, comprised of music industry luminaries.

Additionally, the Museum will also host a raffle to raise proceeds in support of our ongoing educational programs for adults and children.  

Prizes include:

- Lifetime membership to the Museum of Making Music!
- Two free tickets to all our remaining concerts in 2012! (a $490 value!)
- $100 Museum Store Gift Card
- 50 Admission Passes to the Museum (a $400 value!)
- Complimentary facility rental for your private party** (a $1000 value!)
- One free semester in the North Coastal New Horizons Band OR the North Coast Strings Ensemble! (up to $195 value!) and more!

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On Friday, August 3, 2012 at 7 PM, the Museum presents its popular Local Flavor Concert Series featuring singer/songwriter Colin Clyne.  The series couples emerging local artists with local food and beverages in an intimate concert setting.  Tickets are $10 and include a slice of pizza and beverage.  This event is generously sponsored by Flippin' Pizza/Knockout Pizza and Stone Brewing.
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