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Sat, Nov 04


Lanterman Auditorium

2023 Season Opening Gala Concert

As part of the California Festival, the Burbank Philharmonic, under the baton of Music Director Michael Stanley.

2023 Season Opening Gala Concert
2023 Season Opening Gala Concert

Time & Location

Nov 04, 2023, 7:30 PM

Lanterman Auditorium, 4491 Cornishon Ave, La Cañada Flintridge, CA 91011, USA

About the event


· Toast of the Town – Overture by Quinn Mason

* This performance is part of the California Festival, a two-week, statewide festival of new music

· Selected Arias ----- Talin Nalbandian, Mezzo-Soprano soloist, 2019 Hennings-Fischer Grand Prize winner

· Violin Concerto in D Minor, Op. 47 by Jean Sibelius ----- Wenlan Jackson Violin soloist, 2022 Hennings-Fischer Grand Prize winner

2023 Season Opening Gala Concert

No admission charge or tickets.

The Burbank Philharmonic’s 2023 Season Opening Gala Concert will feature a wide variety of music performed by some of Southern California’s top musical talent.  Celebrating the diversity of our Los Angeles region, the orchestra will open with Toast of the Town – Overture by sought-after young composer Quinn Mason. Toast of the Town is a fun and festive overture to a nonexistent operetta written in the style of composers such as Offenbach and Gilbert and Sullivan.  Its performance is part of the California Festival, a two-week, statewide festival of new music from around the world, showcasing today’s most compelling and forward-looking voices in performances of works written within the past five years.

Mr. Mason (b. 1996) is a composer and conductor based in Dallas, Texas. He recently finished a successful tenure as Artist in Residence of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra for the 2022-2023 season. He also served as the Detroit Symphony Orchestra's Classical Roots composer in residence in 2022 (the youngest composer appointed to that role) and as classical radio station KMFA's inaugural composer in residence.  His music has been played by renowned orchestras such as the San Francisco Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Detroit Symphony, Dallas Symphony, New World Symphony. Utah Symphony, and more. A multiple prize winner in composition, he is also the recipient of awards from the American Composers Forum, Philadelphia Youth Orchestra, Heartland Symphony Orchestra, ASCAP, and Voices of Change, among others.

Following the overture, the orchestra will present two recent Grand Prize winners of the Burbank Philharmonic Hennings-Fischer Young Artist Competition.  The first to be featured will be 2019 winner Talin Nalbandian, an Armenian-American mezzo-soprano from Los Angeles, California.  Her recent roles include the title role in Bizet’s Carmen and Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e I Montecchi at the University of Texas, Austin, as well as Hansel and the Sandman in Hansel and Gretel with Opera San Josè, La Ciesca in Gianni Schicchi with the Livermore Valley Opera, and Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni with Virginia Opera.  She has also performed with Music Academy of the West, Sarasota Opera, and Wolf Trap Opera, among many others.  In addition to winning the Hennings-Fischer Competition, Ms. Nalbandian’s recent awards include second place in the Mildred Miller International Voice Competition and third place at The Dallas Opera Biennial Lone Star Vocal Competition.

Finally, the orchestra will showcase violinist Wenlan Jackson, a 2022 Hennings-Fischer Grand Prize winner who will close the concert with Sibelius’ monumental Violin Concerto.  Ms. Jackson studies with renowned violin pedagogue Robert Lipsett at the Colburn Conservatory of Music.  Prior to Colburn, she studied at the Cleveland Institute of Music with Ivan Zenaty and Stephen Rose.  In addition to the Hennings-Fischer Competition, she has won the Colburn Music Academy Concerto Competition, the Contemporary Youth Orchestra Concerto Competition, and was a semi-finalist in Beethoven’s Hradec International Competition.  Ms. Jackson has attended numerous summer festivals including the Aspen Music Festival, Sarasota Music Festival, and Smetana’s Litomyšl International Music Festival.  She has taken masterclasses with artists such as Midori, Augustin Hadelich, David Halen, Ani Kavafian, Bing Wang, Robert McDuffie, Ilya Kaler, and Peter Salaff.

The concert will be conducted by Burbank Philharmonic Music Director Michael Stanley.  Maestro Stanley is a multi-talented and in-demand conductor and performer based in Southern California, who has performed in such world-renowned venues as Carnegie Hall, Walt Disney Concert Hall, and UCLA’s Royce Hall.  As a conductor his performances have garnered outstanding reviews, with the Los Angeles Times proclaiming that “…[his] ensemble performed beautifully.”  He is currently the Music Director and Conductor of the Burbank Philharmonic Orchestra and the Westlake Village Symphony.  Mr. Stanley has conducted both nationally and internationally, including leading the prestigious YMF Debut Orchestra at the finals of the 2019 Christopher Parkening International Guitar Competition.  As an advocate for new music, he has commissioned and premiered numerous compositions in a variety of genres.  Among his many conducting teachers and mentors are Kenneth Kiesler, Jeffrey Schindler, Richard Rintoul, Gary Pratt and David Rentz.

The concert will be held at Lanterman Auditorium, 4491 Cornishon Avenue, in La Cañada Flintridge.  


There are three free parking lots on Cornishon Avenue: limited parking adjacent to the building (2 spaces for Handicap parking), a partially covered lot beneath the adjacent office building facing Foothill Blvd. (3 Handicap spaces), and a lot across the street (1 Handicap space).  Street parking is also available; please observe signs and do not block driveways.

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