PICTURED: Cola Boyy has been named to the Honorary Board of Directors for the Oxnard Performing Arts Center. Photo submitted

by Nancy D. Lackey Shaffer


Camerata Pacifica introduces MusicBox

Local chamber music organization Camerata Pacifica has a new option for fans of classical music. MusicBox, created by Chamber Music LA — of which Camerata Pacifica is a member — provides exclusive access to three different recorded concerts carefully curated by its members (which also include Salastina, Jacaranda Music, Pittance Chamber Music, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the Colburn School). The concerts were made available on Sept. 1.

The concerts include André Previn: Four Songs for Soprano, Cello and Piano (1994, texts Toni Morrison) and William Grant Still: Suite for Violin and Piano (1943); Joseph Bologne: Concertante Quartet No. 3 in C Major along with works by Edouard Destenay, Frédéric Chopin and Kevin Puts; and Juan Pablo Contreras’s Mariachitlan! and movements III and IV of Mendelssohn’s Italian Symphony. For more information, visit cameratapacifica.org/cmla/

David and Teri Edsall receive Medici Award

Studio Channel Islands Art Center in Camarillo recently announced that Mr. David Edsall, Esq. and Mrs. Teri Edsall have received the prestigious 2021 Medici Award, the highest recognition presented by SCIART. The award recognizes exceptional support provided by individuals to the arts organization.

David Edsall, the founding partner of Camarillo-based Edsall Law, served on the SCIART Board of Directors from 2013 to 2016, and helped recruit key stakeholders from the business community to expand the organization’s outreach. Teri Edsall served as chair of the gala committee for Art à la Mode, helping to transform the event into one of SCIART’s premier fundraising events and celebrations.

Maggie Kildee, co-founder of SCIART and former member of the board, said “Teri and David have been a large part of Studio Channel Islands’ success. They have given of their time, their energy and their money to keep this organization growing. David’s expertise as a lawyer and his years of service on the board were of great value as we grew. Teri’s work leading past galas and other events clearly added to their success. The Edsalls’ appreciation of art, both for themselves and for the community, has been outstanding!”

The Edsalls will receive the Medici Award as part of the annual Art à a Mode gala, taking place Oct. 9 at Los Posas Country Club in Camarillo.

For more information, visit studiochannelislands.org.

DeStefano seeks funding for new film

Lorenzo DeStefano, Ventura resident, filmmaker and founder of the Ventura Film Society, has launched a crowdfunding campaign in order to raise money for his latest film, Stairway to the Stars

The narrative short film stars Sean Young (Blade Runner) as Lavergne, an actress on the verge of physical and mental collapse, who has a love-hate relationship with a young gay man named Tony. The story, based on a real incident witnessed by DeStefano when he first moved to Hollywood, was also adapted into a one-act play in 2019. 

DeStefano serves as producer, writer and director of the film, which is currently in pre-production. Sponsored by From The Heart Productions, DeStefano’s Westshire Films is seeking $30,000 in additional funding on the crowdsourcing site WeDid.it. The campaign runs through Oct. 7; filming is expected to take place in mid-October 2021.

For more information on the film and to donate, visit stairwaytothestars.wedid.it/campaigns/9578-please-support-stairway-to-the-stars.

NWS receives grant funding

In August the California Arts Council awarded a $27,000 grant to New West Symphony in recognition of its “resiliency and dedication” toward keeping audiences engaged and entertained through the innovative “Global Sounds, Local Cultures” online programming, which began in October 2020 and is available on demand through Sept. 30, 2021.

According to the press release, the California Arts Council focused its 2021 grants across distinct program areas with an emphasis toward “nurturing and healing our communities through the arts; keeping the doors of our arts and cultural institutions open; protecting jobs in the creative field; and preserving our cultural heritage, our stories, and our culture bearers.” “Global Sounds, Local Cultures” did just that by presenting a season of digital concerts, “Meet the Artists” segments and other complementary content that reflected and celebrated the music, cultures and family traditions found in California. Music from Japan, India, Mexico and more were featured in the programming.

“We are deeply honored that the California Arts Council chose to recognize the New West Symphony for our innovative programming during these most difficult past 18 months and our strong belief in the healing power of music,” said NWS Chief Executive Officer Natalia Staneva.

In addition, NWS’s youth outreach program Laby Harmony Project received a $15,000 grant from the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association in June. 

For more information, including details on the upcoming season, visit newwestsymphony.org

Cola Boyy joins OPAC board

Disco pop artist, activist and Oxnard native Cola Boyy has joined the Oxnard Performing Arts Center’s honorary board of directors. The musician, who has performed at the OPAC and helped organize a fundraiser for it in August 2019, released his debut full-length album, Prosthetic Boombox, in June 2021.

“The Center is a staple of Oxnard, one of the few from my childhood that still remains. The people of Oxnard need a place like the PACC they can go to, that represents their interest,” Cola Boyy stated in an email shared by OPAC.

For more information, visit www.oxnardperformingarts.com