Auburn Symphony League hosts Bingo! and BBQ Fundraiser

By: Krissi Khokhobashvili, Journal features editor
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Volunteers hope the Auburn Elks Lodge will fill with lovers of bingo and classical music July 14 as the Auburn Symphony League, in partnership with the lodge, hosts a fundraiser for the community orchestra that has had a tough year.

“It’s been hard on everybody,” said Eileen Ferber, event chair. The symphony suffered a tragic blow earlier this year when longtime Maestro Michael Goodwin was killed in a car accident. The symphony recently hired Peter Jaffe, conductor of the Stockton Symphony, to take the helm as conductor here.

“The whole mantra of the orchestra is to keep the music playing, and so the league is eager to do anything we can to further that cause,” said Symphony League President Karen Luttinger. “And of course, with the advent of the new maestro, why, the music is going to keep playing.”

But it takes money to keep the orchestra afloat. The Symphony League makes annual donations to the orchestra through its fundraisers, including a home tour held every other year. Rob Haswell, symphony business manager, said that last year the league donated over $16,000 to the symphony.

“On non-Home Tour years it’s been closer to $5,000 to $6,000, still a very generous (and needed) amount,” Haswell said. “The league also provides support at many of our events and their volunteer efforts are huge in helping out the Auburn Community Golf Classic, which this year will be on Aug. 24.”

Bingo! and BBQ attendees pay $25 admission, which includes a barbecue dinner with all the fixings catered by the Elks Lodge, which also mans a no-host bar at the event. Desserts will be provided by league members, known for providing hungry orchestra musicians and audience members with refreshments during intermission. Admission also includes one bingo ticket, with additional tickets available for $1 each. There will be about 10 games played throughout the evening, organizers said, with prizes up for grabs donated by league members and area businesses.

A raffle is also an event highlight, with prizes including golf games at Black Oak and The Ridge golf courses, and a lesson with a pro at Black Oak.

Luttinger said the league has about 40 members devoted to helping the symphony. She said she joined out of a love of music and appreciation of Auburn’s commitment to the arts.

“I am still amazed that a town the size of Auburn has a symphony orchestra of the caliber that we do,” she beamed. “The applications they had for maestro came from all over the world. It was amazing.”

Reach Krissi Khokhobashvili at Follow her on Twitter, @AuburnJournalAE.


Bingo! and BBQ
Saturday, July 14; no-host cocktail hour at 6 p.m., barbecue dinner at 7 p.m., bingo at 8 p.m.

Where: Auburn Elks Lodge, 195 Pine St., Auburn

Cost: $25 per person

Reserve: By July 12 with check payable to Auburn Symphony League, 4612 Longview Drive, Rocklin, CA 95677 (Visa and MasterCard also accepted)

Info: (530) 885-1706


Symphony announces season lineup

Maestro Peter Jaffe has announced the 25th anniversary season of the Auburn Symphony, his first wielding the baton for the orchestra.

“I thought it would be really great to have a season of musical blockbusters, if you will,” Jaffe said. “Great monuments of the repertoire that are just real gems.”

The season kicks off Sept. 8 with Symphony in the Park, where the musicians will perform a “toe-tapping collection of marches and dances,” Jaffe said. That includes work by John Williams and the march from “Swan Lake.”

Masterworks Concert 1, Oct. 27 and 29
“Bachanale” from “Samson et Delilah,” Édouard Lalo’s cello concerto and Hector Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique.

Masterworks Concert 2, Jan. 19 and 20
“Night on Bald Mountain” by Petrovich Mussorgsky and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Max Bruch’s violin concerto and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5.

Masterworks Concert 3
“The Moldau” by Bed?ich Smetana, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s clarinet concerto, “Pavane for a Dead Princess” by Joseph-Maurice Ravel and George Gershwin’s “An American in Paris.”

The symphony is finalizing its soloist lineup. Jaffe hinted that he’s looking to bring in some young performers this year, including soloists in their late teens. The symphony will continue its traditions of the Kinderkonzert for youngsters (Feb. 16) and a performance at the Mondavi Center (April 14).

The symphony, now on break, gathers again for rehearsals in August. Jaffe said he’s eager to start the new season with this group of hardworking musicians.

“The overall sort of ethos of the whole thing,” he said, “is when I look upon that season of repertoire and think about this season of working with the Auburn Symphony, I just have a big smile.”