Another artistic expression of this great art colony is the Laguna Beach Musical Festival. The 9th annual Festival is going on now thru the 13th of February. The festival is a collaboration between Laguna Beach Live! and the Philharmonic Society of Orange County . Together they work to bring prominent and promising musicians to Laguna Beach. This year the festival features guest artistic director, Brooklyn Rider; a genre-defying string quartet.
I had the chance to hear Brooklyn Rider play with Kojiro Umezaki, a flute player, last night at the Laguna Playhouse . The show was appropriately titled “New World.” Brooklyn Rider is well known for breaking the barriers of the classical genre by incorporating a taste of world music and sounds. Umezaki grew up in Tokyo studying the western flute and then moved to studying the shakuhachi, a Japanese end-blown bamboo flute. The instrument was first introduced in 7th century Japan and was used to create music for Zen Buddhist meditation. I could sense the calming spirit of the instrument as he played. Sometimes haunting but always soothing and pure. Mixed with the expressive melodies of Brooklyn Rider it was a feast for the ears, mind, and soul.
There are several shows left for the Laguna Beach Music Festival. Be sure to treat yourself to one of these fantastic performances.
For tickets and information click HERE.
By Anne-Marie S.