January 23, 2018

Spring Season Highlights Include Navy Band Tour, Charlie Brown Musical  

Tickets are on sale for Sonoma State University’s Department of Music spring season that consists of more than 30 student, faculty and visiting artist performances at the Green Music Center, and ten showings of “You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown” at Evert B. Person Theatre.  

Ticket prices are $8 for music concerts and $10-17 for the musical. All events are free to SSU students. Some performances are free, but ticket is required. View the department calendar for full details.


U.S.Navy Band

United States Navy Band
February 21, 7:30 p.m. Weill Hall

The United States Navy Concert Band will give a free concert in Weill Hall, its only stop in the Bay Area on a 24-day, 21-concert national tour. The premier wind ensemble of the U.S. Navy, the Concert Band will play marches, patriotic selections, orchestral transcriptions and modern wind ensemble repertoire. The Navy Band, recognized as one of the finest wind ensembles in the world, is based in Washington, D.C, has been touring the country since 1925. Free admission, ticket required.Tickets



Band Season Highlights

  • 6th Annual Invitational Wind Band and Orchestra Festival March 7–9, Weill Hall (unticketed, daily parking fee in effect)
  • CBDNA Western/Northwestern Division Conference March 21–24, Weill Hall (unticketed, daily parking fee in effect)
  • The Commanders Jazz Ensemble from the USAF Band of the Golden West May 11, 7:30 p.m. Weill Hall. Originally featured during last October’s Jazz Week and then cancelled due to the fires, The Commanders Jazz Ensemble from Travis Air Base will appear on this spring jazz concert playing music for Big Band and more. SSU’s Jazz Orchestra opens the show.l Free admission, ticket required. Tickets
  • Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Eric Cabalo guitar soloist, May 12, 7:30 p.m. Weill Hall Tickets


You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown
February 1-11, Evert B. Person Theatre

The music and theatre departments team up to present the newest version of this timeless musical about the Peanuts gang. Two new songs by Andrew Lippa have been added (“Beethoven Day,” “My New Philosophy”) to the twelve original numbers, which include “My Blanket and Me,” “The Baseball Game,” “Little Known Facts,” “Suppertime,” and “Happiness.”Showtimes and ticket links

Alexander Nevsky
April 7-9, Weill Hall

The Sonoma State Symphonic Chorus (Jenny Bent, director) will join the Santa Rosa Symphony – Bruno Ferrandis, conductor and Jacalyn Kreitzer, mezzo-soprano – on April 7-9 for Prokofiev’s Alexander Nevsky, the cantata based on the epic 1938 film of the same title by Sergei Eisenstein.Concert times and ticket links

Choral Outreach Concert
April 18, 7:30 p.m. Weill Hall

A choral and educational outreach concert of grand proportions hosted by the SSU Symphonic and Concert Choirs will feature choirs from San Jose State (Jeffrey Benson, director), Santa Rosa Junior College (Jody Benecke, director), Montgomery High School (Dana Alexander, director), and Redwood High School (Susie Martone, director).Tickets


Jonathan Dimmock

Let’s Go To The Movies!
March 4, 2 p.m. Weill Hall

The Sonoma State Symphony Orchestra presents its annual Family Concert, “Let’s Go To The Movies!” with music from films including How To Train Your Dragon, The Sea Hawk, Star Wars and others. Families with children of all ages are welcome and invited to come in costume.Tickets

Avec L'Orgue
April 29, 2 p.m. Weill Hall

The Orchestra performs again with organ soloist Jonathan Dimmock playing works by Poulenc and Saint-Saëns. The concert features an afternoon of French music, including a the Concerto for Organ and Strings by Francis Poulenc and Camille Saint-Saëns’ towering Symphony No. 3, “Organ.” Paul Dukas’ brass fanfare from La Peri opens the program. Tickets



Navarro Trio
February 18, 2 p.m. Schroeder Hall

Violist Wayne Roden joins Chamber Artists-in-Residence Navarro Trio on February 18 for Piano Quartets (violin, viola, cello and piano) by Mozart and Taneyev. Roden, who teaches viola at Sonoma State, can be heard as a string soloist on the San Francisco Symphony’s recording of Strauss’ Metamorphoses, Herbert Blomstedt conducting. Tickets

The Navarro Trio performs again on April 8 at 2 p.m. in Schroeder Hall.Tickets

Grisha Goryachev

Grisha Goryachev, guitar
April 14, 7:30 p.m. Schroeder Hall

A native of St. Petersburg, Russia, Grisha Goryachev is renowned for his extraordinary musical sensitivity and technical virtuosity in both classical and flamenco styles. He is reviving the tradition of solo flamenco guitar in a concert setting that was practiced by the legendary flamenco masters Ramón Montoya and Sabicas. Goryachev will be playing flamenco compositions by modern and traditional maestros, each with different colors of beauty, intensity, stretching the guitar to express all of its capable emotions. Tickets

Goryachev will give a free public workshop on Classical and Flamenco Technique prior to the concert.


Sonoma Musica Viva: The Music of Charles Ives
March 2. 7:30 p.m. Schroeder Hall

American composer Charles Ives (1874-1954) has been called a rare blend of the cultivated and the vernacular. Witness, for example, the middle movement of his Piano Trio, entitled TSIAJ (or This Scherzo Is A Joke). Performed by members of the woodwind, brass, strings and piano faculty under the direction of Brian S. Wilson, the all-Ives concert will include Piano Trio; The Unanswered Question; Three Quarter Tone Pieces; From The Steeples and The Mountains; Selections from 114 Songs; and Variations on “America.” Tickets


April 6, 7:30 p.m. Schroeder Hall

A composer residency from April 4–7 features Pulsoptional, the "band of composers" co-founded by composition professor Thomas Limbert. Pulsoptional attracts listeners new to contemporary music with its boundary- and genre-defying, high-energy concerts. Personnel include Thom Limbert, percussion; Marc Faris, electric guitar; John Mayrose, guitars and electric bass; Carrie Shull, oboe/English horn; Todd Hershberger, bassoon/alto saxophone; Sidney Boquiren, piano. The concert is ticketed, while other activities are free of charge.

  • April 4 – Composer’s Forum, 1:00 p.m., GMC 2052
  • April 6 – Concert, 7:30 p.m., Schroeder Hall Tickets
  • April 7 ­– Student composition readings, 8:30-11 a.m., Schroeder Hall


Every Wednesday at 1 p.m. in GMC 1029 the public is invited to attend Jazz Forum, a performance//master class for students majoring in Jazz and featuring professional acts.  Upcoming artists include vocalist Danielle Wertz (1/31); guitarist John Stowell and saxophonist Mike Zilber (2/7); Brazilian guitarist Ricardo Peixoto (2/21); pianist David Berkman (4/11); and Eighth Blackbird (4/18). Seating is limited.

The jazz program’s flagship ensemble, the SSU Jazz Orchestra performs on March 14 (tickets) and May 11 with featured guests, The Commanders Jazz Ensemble from the USAF Band of the Golden West (Free, Ticket required) at 7:30 p.m. in Weill Hall. Info
The Music department is located at the Green Music Center, ranked No. 3 on College Degree Search's 25 Most Amazing Campus Arts Centers, with concert venues in Weill Hall and Schroeder Hall. The GMC is two miles east of Highway 101 on Rohnert Park Expressway. For information call (707) 664-2324.


Every Wednesday at 1 p.m. in GMC 1029 the public is invited to attend Jazz Forum, a performance//master class for students majoring in Jazz and featuring professional acts.  There is no admission charge, $5 daily parking fee in effect. Call (707) 664-2324 or email course instructor Doug Leibinger for information.

JAN 31
Danielle Wertz
Jazz vocalist Danielle Wertz was named one of eleven semi-finalists in the 2015 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocals Competition, and was flown to Los Angeles, California to perform in front of Luciana Souza, Al Jarreau, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Patti Austin, and Freddy Cole. Most recently she took second place in the 2017 Ella Fitzgerald Jazz Vocal Competition, and third place in the 2017 Mid-Atlantic Jazz Vocal Competition. A resident of Oakland, CA, Wertz holds a Bachelor's Degree in Jazz Vocal Performance from the University of Miami's Frost School of Music, and studied under the direction of Dr. Kate Reid.

Danielle Wertz       

1 p.m. GMC 1029
John Stowell and Mike Zilber
John Stowell is a unique jazz guitarist influenced as much by pianists and horn players as he is by guitarists. His original take on harmony, chords and improvisation sets him apart. Stowell has taught internationally for over 40 years in every educational setting, and his clinics are informal, hands-on and informative.

Mike Zilber, called one of the true masters of modern jazz saxophone, has performed and/or recorded with many jazz luminaries over the years, from Liebman to Miroslav Vitous, Mike Clark, Steve Smith and Bob Berg. Zilber's work with John Stowell goes back a decade, and their 2016 Basement Blues was hailed by All About Jazz’s Dan McClenaghan “as compelling and modernistic as any group out there.”

John Stowell  
Mike Zilber    

FEB 21
1 p.m. GMC 1029
Ricardo Peixoto
Ricardo Peixoto’s fluid melodic sense and original harmonic approach place him at the forefront of Brazilian guitar in the world today. An inspired improviser with a keen compositional sense, Ricardo’s unique and eloquent style evokes images far beyond his Brazilian territory. Whether playing classical or electric guitars, Brazilian 7-string, 12 string, octave guitar, cavaquinho, or tenor banjo, Ricardo’s music combines rich melodies, unusual harmonies, and the unmistakable rhythms of Brazil. In addition to his work as a performer and composer, Peixoto is also well respected for his work as a teacher and lecturer on Brazilian music.

Ricardo Peixoto         

 APR 11
1 p.m. GMC 1029
David Berkman
Since moving to New York in 1985, pianist David Berkman has been an important part of the jazz community. He is an award-winning composer/bandleader (2000 Doris Duke/Chamber Music America New Works Creation and Presentation Grant), a recording artist whose nine recordings as a leader have appeared on numerous best records of the year critic’s lists (The New York Times, Village Voice, Downbeat, JazzIz, Jazz Times) and an award-winning jazz clinician who has performed and taught at numerous jazz camps, universities and conservatories around the United States, South America, Asia and Europe.

David Berkman          

APR 18
1 p.m. GMC 1029
Eighth Blackbird Residency
Eighth Blackbird has been called “one of the smartest, most dynamic contemporary classical ensembles on the planet” (Chicago Tribune). Launched by six entrepreneurial Oberlin Conservatory undergraduates in 1996, this Chicago-based super-group is known for performing from memory, employing choreography and collaborations with theater artists, lighting designers and even puppetry artists. Their residency includes an April 19 concert in Weill Hall.

Eighth Blackbird        


SSU Box Office (707) 664-4246


Media Contact

Ruth Wilson
Lecturer in Horn
Music Department Publicity
Sonoma State University
1801 East Cotati Avenue
Rohnert Park, CA 94928