As a core part of its mission to make the arts accessible to all, Festival Napa Valley’s Concerts for Kids provides an admission-free opportunity for 1st through 12th grade students to attend a live concert in a professional performance setting, including a bilingual interactive session with the artists. For many young people in Napa Valley, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
The Festival Napa Valley 2019 summer Concert for Kids featured noted children’s book author and composer Karen LeFrak, and the symphonic music she wrote to accompany her latest book, Sleepover at the Museum. Maestro Ming Luke led the Blackburn Music Academy Orchestra in the California premiere of this evocative piece about a slumber party and scavenger hunt in a museum of natural history. The story followed three children as they learned about the museum’s collections with the help of a narrator, while the book’s beautiful images were projected on a giant screen. Also on the program was Camille Saint-Saëns’s beloved classic, Carnival of the Animals, a whimsical zoological exploration for orchestra and narrator.
1,200 students attending Festival Napa Valley’s six Arts for All Camps were transported via charter bus to the Lincoln Theater in Yountville from American Canyon, Calistoga, Napa and St. Helena to attend the concert on Monday, July 15, 2019.
An additional Concert for Kids was presented on April 5, 2019, at Jarvis Conservatory for 150 students from Camille Creek Community School, whose mission is to empower Napa’s most disenfranchised youth toward a productive future. Cuban pianist Aldo López-Gavilán, who made his festival debut in 2016 and was awarded the festival’s Khaledi Prize in 2017, was joined by his brother, Ilmar Gavilán, on violin for an electrifying concert of Aldo’s original compositions. After the concert, the duo held a bilingual question and answer session with the students to discuss their musical journey and the role it has played in shaping their lives.
Concert For Kids is made possible by a generous gift from Deborah and Kenneth Novack.