February 2022 eNotes
Dear Friend,

This year’s valentine from the Auburn Symphony is the afterglow of our January 23rd concert and even MORE music on the horizon! The third and final concert of our Finalist Showcase Series is Sunday, February 27th, with Maestro Scott Seaton and guest artist Evan Kahn on cello. The pre-concert talks starting at 2:15 p.m. (doors open for vaccine check-in at 1:45 p.m.) have been very popular with concert-goers, so consider coming early and staying after the 3:00 p.m. concert for the casual and fun Q&A with the Maestro. You will be out by 5:00 p.m. and can enjoy dinner at one of our restaurant partners in town to round out a thoroughly wonderful afternoon.
Our annual Young Artists Competition is once again taking place at the Auburn State Theatre on Sunday, February 13th. Very talented youth from ages 8 to 18 will perform in person for judges, including Maestro Peter Jaffe, Concertmaster Chase Spruill, and pianist Faythe Vollrath. Although the competition cannot be open to the public this year due to public health concerns, the follow-up recital of winners will be filmed and made available.
Mark your calendars! My favorite valentine (husband Bob) adores pizza, loves making me happy, and is never happier than when all this comes together to support the Auburn Symphony (and that makes ME happy). For Valentine’s Day this year, the Symphony League’s pizza fundraiser on Wednesday, February 16th, is a winner! Bring this flyer (click here) into MOD Pizza at 2150 Grass Valley Highway in Auburn that day and MOD will donate 20% of your bill to support the League and the Auburn Symphony Orchestra. Please share it with friends and neighbors, or make it a Valentine’s Day gift -- an IOU for a pizza date two days later!
Since this is the last month of our Finalist Showcase Series, our behind-the-scenes spotlight is on the little-known (yet oh, so important!) position of Music Librarian, currently held by our Assistant Principal Cellist, Norma Sexton. She moved here in 2011 from Bakersfield where she used to play with her local symphony orchestra, and filled her musical life with coaching cello at several high schools, and teaching students on the weekends and evenings. As a licensed pharmacist with a specialty in home infusion pharmacy, being busily involved in her love of music outside of work was an important balance for Norma. She had chosen pharmacy school over studying music theory and harmony, despite being hooked by the cello since age 10.

When Norma and her high school sweetheart and husband, Phil, moved to Auburn ten years ago, they were wisely looking
for a place that would nurture each of their individual interests. For her, that “box was ticked” when she attended her first Auburn Symphony concert in October 2011, and actively jumped into auditioning for the orchestra and getting involved in the musical community whenever she could. Among her many talents, Norma brought experience as a Music Librarian with her and was eager to serve the Auburn Symphony when asked in 2019. She explains that, in simple terms, a librarian’s job is to distribute and collect the music, ensuring that all musicians have what they need to rehearse and perform. The music can come from a variety of sources—pieces we own, buy, rent or borrow depending on mutually beneficial relationships with local organizations who are willing to share. Music costs can become an expensive item for community orchestras, so having a librarian (and conductor!) with connections is valuable to all of us!
The librarian is not just one who needs to be well-organized and cognizant of good sources, but also needs an eagle eye to be sure the parts are complete. Sometimes music requires marking per the conductor’s wishes in preparation for playing, and we can imagine the havoc created if the conductor’s score is marked differently than the orchestra members! Parts for stringed instruments need to be marked to ensure that bowings are all going in the same direction. Collecting, storing, and returning music, as well as maintaining accurate records, are all part of the critical work never given a thought by most of us as we hear the sweet sounds of our symphony orchestra. Norma does this because she loves to play and give her service to making music; she says she especially appreciated her tenure under Maestro Peter Jaffe as his musicality made her a better player. Our special valentine this month goes to Norma with deep thanks for this dedicated service and giving us all an understanding of its value!
We are also pleased to introduce the newest member of our Symphony family -- Ken Moore joined the Board of Directors last month and he’s already getting assignments and still smiling.   A retired minister and college administrator, Ken is active in local community organizations and still teaches classes in life-long learning topics at Sierra College. Since he and wife Susan moved to Auburn, he has helped her with music education volunteer outreach at Rock Creek Elementary School. This experience seems to be a natural fit with both the Auburn Symphony and Ken’s leadership with the Auburn chapter for Kiwanis International, whose focus is on helping children around the world. Through Ken, our 2019 Symphony in the Park event got some much-needed assistance from Kiwanis, and they continue to donate to our youth programming. When you see Ken at concerts and Symphony functions, please feel free to introduce yourself and thank him for volunteering to help guide us!
American painter Jackson Pollock told us, “Love is friendship set to music.”  It’s a perfect sentiment for this virtual valentine, and the elements will come together again at our February 27th concert. We continue to be grateful for your friendship and support in this everchanging world, especially as we add back beloved traditions and look ahead to a new season. We’re gearing up for our first in-person Gala since 2019, set for April 3rd at the Blue Goose Event Center. It’s exhilarating because we know the cause we are serving, and our hearts are full.

Stay tuned,
Stephanie Snyder, President
Auburn Symphony Board of Directors

2021/2022 Season Signature Sponsors

Bobbi Machado
Dr. Dwight & Mary Odom
Bob & Stephanie Snyder

2021/2022 Concertmaster Sponsors

Bud & LaRaine Beadles
Dean Prigmore & Patrice Taylor


Auburn Symphony
Box 74, Auburn 95604
985 Lincoln Way, #102, Auburn 95603
530-823-6683


Tuesday - Friday / 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.