Golden Dreams

» INTERPLAY 2017: Golden Dreams

Chapman University and Pacific Symphony join forces again to present the annual INTERPLAY festival of music, culture and ideas. With many events free and open to the public, this boundary-breaking partnership engages the Chapman community and Symphony musicians and staff in a wide array of collaborative events, including performances, lectures, art exhibitions, and student projects. This year we celebrate California's rich, diverse human landscape and its role as a unique cultural crossroads, a meeting point for our state's indigenous people and immigrants from across the nation and around the world.  "Golden Dreams" will honor and explore the history, heritage, and ideas of those who were here, those who came here - and how their interactions changed the world.


Golden Dreams features treasures from Chapman’s special collections
Leatherby Libraries main floor
February - May

Moving Forward, Looking Back: Journeys Across the Old Spanish Trail explores Spanish heritage in the United States Southwest 
Argyros Forum Second Floor 
February - May

Golden Dreams: The Immigrant Vision of California showcases paintings from the Museum's collection
Hilbert Museum of California Art
Opens March 18


For information on festival events, click on the calendar below.


+ - FEBRUARY 2017

FEBRUARY 9: Moving Forward, Looking Back: Artist reception with Janire Nájera

mflb image 1Live music and light refreshments 
4:00 pm
Argyros Forum 209C
Free and open to the public

12:00 noon
Salmon Recital Hall (Bertea Hall 100)
Free and open to the public 

Pacific Symphony and Chapman present a reimagining of Hansel and Gretel as an immigration story. Featuring a new script by Chapman student Marcella Zizzo.

+ - MARCH 2017


10:30 am
Salmon Recital Hall (Bertea Hall 100)
Free and open to the public 

An engaging look at artists who reinvented themselves in a new world.
Rebecca Sherburn, soprano
Louise Thomas, piano
David Prather, actor

MARCH 16: SIDE BY SIDE: Chapman Wind Symphony with Carl St. Clair and Pacific Symphony musicians
2:30 pm
Crean Recital Hall (Oliphant Hall 103)
Free and open to the public

Chapman Wind Symphony "side by side" rehearsal with Carl St. Clair and Pacific Symphony Musicians 

MARCH 29: "THE DREAM OF AMERICA" : Reception, exhibition, and panel discussionellis island
5:00 reception
6:00 panel discussion
Leatherby Libraries Doy and Dee Henley Reading Room

“The Dream of America” brings together an extraordinary group of southern California citizens to discuss their personal journeys of assimilation, achievement, and contribution. Each has won the prestigious Ellis Island Medal of Honor, presented annually to American citizens who have distinguished themselves within their own ethnic groups while exemplifying the values of the American way of life. Chapman University President Daniele Struppa will moderate the conversation with Jim Doti, Rosario Marin, and Gaddi Vasquez.

 Prior to the discussion we encourage attendees to view the exhibit in Argyros Forum. Moving Forward, Looking Back: Journeys Across the Old Spanish Trail explores Spanish heritage in the United States Southwest via the Old Spanish Trail, a route that linked the colonial outposts of New Mexico and California.

+ - APRIL 2017

April 1: "Golden Dreams": Art and Music
Hilbert museum photo

7:00 reception
7:30 program
Hilbert Museum of California Art 

“Golden Dreams” will offer a lively mix of music and conversation. A wine and cheese reception will be followed by a short (c. 1 hour) program performed by a Pacific Symphony chamber ensemble featuring an original composition by Chapman student Sam Ek as well as other repertoire appropriate to the art on display. 

APRIL 6: Chapman Wind Symphony: "Celebrating the California Dream Space" 
7:00 pm
Musco Center for the Arts
Ticket required

"There is tremendous beauty here – the forests, deserts, mountains and valleys, the ocean – and also the
strength within the people and in the earth to meet the times that are upon us (David Maslanka)."
Christopher J. Nicholas, conductor
MASLANKA: California 
TICHELI: Wild Nights!
MCTEE: California Counterpoint: The Twittering Machine
GRAINGER: Lincolnshire Posy
REED: El Camino Real: A Latin Fantasy 

APRIL 6-8: PACIFIC SYMPHONY Pacific Symphony

8:00 PM
Renee and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall
For more information and tickets, visit

The New Yorker’s critic Alex Ross described John Adams’ music as “present-tense American romanticism.” In celebration of this new-music luminary’s 70th birthday, Pacific Symphony performs “The Dharma at Big Sur,” with Tracy Silverman, “the greatest living exponent of the electric violin” (BBC Radio). The Grammy-nominated “Ellis Island: The Dream of America” is a stirring work that celebrates the hopes and fears of immigrants who arrive at Ellis Island in search of a utopian dream. 



1:30 PM: SPECIAL PRECONCERT PRESENTATION "Exiled Dreams: Jewish Composers in Hollywood" 



Janire cropped

Janire Nájera is a documentary photographer and filmmaker who uses lens-based media techniques to explore social themes. Janire was born in Bilbao, Spain, and raised in Nájera (La Rioja). She studied Journalism in Madrid and Documentary Photography at the University of South Wales and has had her work featured in places like CNN News, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, Notimex and Vanity Fair. With a background in arts management and curation, Janire has a track record of coordinating large scale artistic projects internationally.

Through her work she hopes to rethink and develop imagery that questions the histories and environments we belong to. My documentary practice is concerned with highlighting communities that have been displaced through changing social and economic climates, she says.
student guitarists

Steven Gudino is a Freshman at the Hall-Musco Conservatory, double-majoring in BM Guitar Performance and BM Music Composition. He has been playing guitar since he was the age of 9, and has played classical guitar for close to two years. He aspires to become a composer for TV and Film, and also wishes to become a professor of music at a four-year institution. Steven comes from a rich Hispanic heritage, and is familiar with Spanish and Hispanic Classical Guitar Repertoire.


Sara Maravilla is a Sophomore at the Hall-Musco Conservatory, majoring in BM Music Education. She has been playing guitar for over ten years now, and almost all of her instruction has been to master the craft of classical guitar performance. She aspires to become a teacher of music in primary and secondary education, her highest goal being to become a director of a prestigious music program. She also comes from a Hispanic Heritage, and takes pride in her roots. 


H and G

Opera Chapman focuses on addressing the complete development of today¹s opera singers with numerous live performance opportunities. The program is comprised of two major productions each year ­ a thematic scenes production in the fall, and a fully-staged production in the spring. This is a rare opportunity for undergraduates to participate in and experience the demanding art form.  Both productions serve as a training ground for students, challenging them to make informed and mature artistic decisions under the guidance of a world-class faculty and staff. Because of the complicated nature of the opera art form and the extensive rehearsal time required to fully realize even one of its productions, students involved in Opera Chapman gain real experience in the intricacies and demands of live performance.

Director of Operatic Studies Peter Atherton is the recipient of the Robert and Norma Lineberger Endowed Chair of Music at Chapman University and is Director of Operatic Studies and Full Professor of Voice in the Hall-Musco Conservatory of Music.  Mr. Atherton has served on the faculty at the University of Southern California, the University of California at Los Angeles, Occidental College, the University of Miami Frost School of Music Summer Program in Salzburg, Austria and at Operafestival di Roma and has presented master classes throughout North America.  His students have been admitted to prestigious graduate and apprentice programs across the country, with many performing professionally in Europe, the United States and Canada.


Originally from San Diego, California, Marcella Zizzo was raised in a traditional, Italian household—suffice it to say her life was never short of material. She has dreams of pursuing a career in comedy, writing for both film and television. It was at the age of eight that she fell in with storytelling, and she hasn’t looked back. Today, Marcella is studying screenwriting at Chapman University love, pursuing a minor in television. She is so incredibly grateful of the opportunities Chapman University has granted her, and hopes you enjoy the show! 

David Prather

Actor-writer David Prather has worked extensively with musicians and dancers as host of "Summer Sounds" at the Hollywood Bowl and concerts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Pacific Symphony. His play "When Harlem was in Vogue" was commissioned and presented by the Alley Theatre in Texas. Recent shows include “Star Spangled Poetry,” “The Bully Dudes” and “Under the Concord Sky.” As an educator and performer he has worked many years with the Music Center of Los Angeles, the San Francisco Symphony, and the Orange County Performing Arts Center. Mr. Prather is a graduate of Princeton University and American Conservatory Theatre.

Rebecca Sherburn

Rebecca Sherburn is the Director of Vocal Studies and an Associate Professor of Voice at Chapman University. Sherburn’s international performances include the role of Carlotta Giudicelli in “Phantom of the Opera” with the Neue Flora Theater Hamburg as well operatic repertoire with German State Theaters in Oberhausen, Gütersloh, Osnabrück and Aachen. National engagements include appearances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group, New York New Music Ensemble, newEar of Kansas City, Los Angeles Master Chorale, South Florida Master Chorale, William Hall Chorale and many others. She has distinguished herself as a champion of contemporary music, releasing a CD “Paul Creston Songs” published by Albany Records in 2014.  Dr. Sherburn’s work is the only comprehensive recording of Creston’s vocal opus. Her scholarly work is published by the National Association of Teachers of Singing, the American Choral Directors Association, and the College Music Society.  A native Californian, she received her Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from the University of Southern California.

Louise Thomas

Pianist Louise Thomas has concertized extensively throughout Europe, North America and Asia at such concert venues as the Tchaikovsky Conservatoire in Moscow, the Franz Liszt Academy Museum in Budapest, the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing, Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and Weill Hall in New York City. Louise Thomas was born in Ireland and completed undergraduate musicology studies at Trinity College, Dublin.  Dr. Thomas received her doctorate in piano performance in 1999 from USC where she studied with Prof. John Perry and Director of Keyboard Collaborative Arts, Dr. Alan Smith. Dr. Thomas joined Chapman University in 2001 as Director of Keyboard Collaborative Arts. In June 2014, she was named Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Performing Arts at Chapman.

wind symphonyony

The Chapman University Wind Symphony has earned a reputation for its breadth of musicality and consistently high level of performance. The ensemble is frequently featured at notable festivals and conferences, including CMEA: The California Association for Music Education and the Invitational Band Festival at the Orange County Performing Arts Center.  Recently the Chapman University Wind Symphony was honored on the national level with a prestigious invitation to perform as one of only four university wind ensembles at the 2008 Biennial Conference of MENC: the National Association for Music Education. The Wind Symphony presents both national and international tours, performing in such prestigious concert halls as the world-renowned Sydney Opera House. Goals of the Wind Symphony include the development of musical expression with individual and ensemble skills through the identification, rehearsal, and performance of the finest wind literature.

The Wind Symphony plays under the direction of award-winning teacher and performer Dr. Christopher Nicholas. Dr. Nicholas served as the Director of Bands at Colorado State University, as well as on the music faculties of the University of Wyoming and Grinnell College. A versatile conductor and trombonist, Dr. Nicholas has performed throughout America, Europe, Canada, Taiwan, China, and Central America, with performances as a conductor on concert tours of American youth ensembles throughout England and Europe; as a featured trombone soloist in concert tours of Taiwan and Hong Kong; as a guest trombonist in concert tours of Poland and the Czech Republic, and as a guest conductor in Ukraine, Spain, Guatemala, Mexico, and Costa Rica.

Doti photo

James Doti earned his B.S. degree in economics from the University of Illinois, Chicago, and his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Chicago. He was appointed president of Chapman University in 1991 and served for 25 years.  In September 2016, he returned to the Chapman faculty.  He holds the Donald Bren Distinguished Chair in Business and Economics. Dr. Doti joined the Chapman faculty in 1974.  In 1978, he founded the A. Gary Anderson Center for Economic Research to provide data, facilities and support to encourage faculty and students to engage in research of high quality, and to widely disseminate the results.  The Center’s inaugural Orange County Forecast, presented in December 1978, was the first economic forecast in the U.S. to be based on an urban econometric model. Dr. Doti’s articles have appeared in academic journals as well as periodicals such as The Wall Street Journal and The Chronicle of Higher Education.   His frequent op-eds appear in the Orange County Register, and he is a regular columnist for Orange County Business Journal.  He is also the co-author of two econometrics texts and co-editor of a collection of readings in free enterprise that received the Templeton Honor Award for Scholarly Excellence. Dr. Doti is a recipient of the Horatio Alger Award and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. He has completed 60 marathons and climbed five of the world’s famed Seven Summits. He is also an avid reader and writer.  His first children’s book, A Christmas Adventure in Little Italy, was published in 2010 and became a Sons of Italy Book Club selection.  His second, Jimmy Finds His Voice, came out in January 2013.  The final installment of the “Jimmy Trilogy,” I Love You This Much, Nonna, is forthcoming in 2017.

Rosario Marin

Rosario Marin is a compassionate mother, dedicated public official and consummate advocate for the disadvantaged who has served for 22 years at the local, state and national levels. She is the author of Leading Between Two Worlds: Lessons from the First Mexican-Born Treasurer of the United States, which details her extraordinary journey. Marin’s professional career includes banking, non-profit organizations and the corporate world. She is a businesswoman, an author and an internationally sought after public speaker. She began her public service career while juggling family and work. Marin first served on the Huntington Park City Council and became Mayor of that city. 

In 2001, Marin was appointed by President George W. Bush and unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate, to be the 41st Treasurer of the United States, making her the first immigrant to do so. Marin served in Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s cabinet as Secretary of the State and Consumer Services Agency from 2006 through March 2009. 

Marin has held numerous leadership positions with nonprofit boards. For her contributions, Marin has been awarded four Honorary Doctorate degrees from CSULA, Whittier College, St. Francis University and Woodbury University. She is the recipient of countless awards and recognitions, including the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Prize given to her by the Joseph P Kennedy Foundation at the United Nations in 1995 and the Outstanding American by Choice Award given to her at the US State Department in 2008. She received her BA in business administration from California State University, Los Angeles, and completed the Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. For her contributions, she was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from her alma mater in 2002.

Vasquez photo

Gaddi H. Vasquez is senior vice president of Government Affairs for Southern California Edison (SCE), one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, and its parent company, Edison International. He is responsible for government relations activities at the Federal and State level, as well as Local Public Affairs. Prior to his current position, he served as U.S. Ambassador and permanent representative to United Nations Agencies based in Rome. There he managed a U.S. multi-agency team responsible for oversight of U.N. Organizations. From 2002-2006, Ambassador Vasquez served as Director of the United States Peace Corps where he led the international volunteer service organization with volunteers and staff serving in 78 countries.

Vasquez has served on the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships and has been appointed by three California Governors to state boards and commissions. He currently serves on the boards of the Public Policy Institute of California, the Board of Governors of the California State University Foundation and the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Educational Fund.

He has been recognized for leadership and service by the Marine Corps Scholarship Fund and the American Council of Young Political Leaders. In 2014, he was a recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor and in 2016 received the Bill of Rights Award by the Constitutional Rights Foundation. Most recently, he received the Eagle Leadership Award from the Latino Leaders Network.

Vasquez received a bachelor’s degree in Public Service Management from the University of Redlands and is the recipient of five honorary doctorate degrees.

Struppa photo

Daniele C. Struppa, Ph.D. became Chapman University's  thirteenth president on September 1, 2016. Previously, Dr. Struppa held the position of Chancellor at Chapman University for the last nine years. He joined Chapman University in 2006 as provost, responsible for creating and implementing academic priorities for the University and for the allocation of resources to support those priorities. In 2007, with the addition of further leadership responsibilities, he was appointed as Chapman’s first chancellor. Dr. Struppa came to Chapman University from George Mason University, where he served as director of the Center for the Applications of Mathematics, as chair of the Department of Mathematical Sciences, and as associate dean for graduate studies. In 1997, he was selected dean of George Mason’s College of Arts and Sciences. Prior to his tenure at George Mason, Dr. Struppa held positions at the University of Milano (Milan, Italy), the Scuola Normale Superiore (Pisa, Italy) and the University of Calabria (Calabria, Italy). Dr. Struppa earned his laurea in mathematics from the University of Milan, Italy in 1977, and received his doctorate degree in mathematics from the University of Maryland, College Park, in 1981. In recognition of his work, he has been awarded the Bartolozzi Prize from the Italian Mathematical Union (1981), and the Matsumae Medal from the Matsumae International Foundation of Tokyo (1987). Dr. Struppa is the author of more than 200 refereed publications, and he is the editor of several volumes. While serving as chancellor, Dr. Struppa continued his scholarly research focusing on Fourier analysis and its applications to a variety of problems including the algebraic analysis of systems of differential equations, signal processing and pattern recognition. Some of his recent work applies these ideas and methods to problems ranging from denoising to bio-contaminant protection to proteomics of cancerous cells.

Sam Ek

Sam Thomas Ek was born and raised in San Mateo, California, just south of San Francisco. His grandfather (Jerry Thomas 1921-2015), a Jazz Pianist in San Francisco, introduced him to Benny Goodman and so he started playing the clarinet in 4th grade. He started to play the saxophone in middle school and started taking Jazz, Ballet and Ballroom dance classes outside of school, including Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet summer program during the summer of 2011. Ek came to Chapman with the intention of completing my BS in Environmental Science & Policy and add a music performance degree on the side, but gradually music became his sole focus. He will be graduating this spring with both a BM in Music Education and a BM in Composition. He has been an honor getting to collaborate with PSO and the Hilbert museum to contribute to this wonderful exhibition of California artistry.


Cindy Ellis

Cynthia Ellis is the solo piccolo player for the Pacific Symphony Orchestra. She is a member of the Pedagogy Committee for the National Flute Association and served as Program Chair for the NFA's annual convention in Anaheim, CA in 2010. She has taught on the music faculty at the Claremont Graduate School, Pomona College, Biola College, and CSU Fullerton. She currently teaches applied music at Saddleback College and Hope International University and serves as music director for Laguna Flutes, a 25 member flute ensemble, through the Emeritus program at Irvine Valley College. Cynthia has recorded for television, motion picture and cartoon soundtracks as well as commercially released chamber music recordings.

Pam Jacobson

Violist Pamela Jacobson became a member of Pacific Symphony in 2008, after subbing for several years. She received a Bachelors of Music degree in violin performance from Chapman University, then took up viola after having a viola made for her by Rena Weisshaar in late 2001. Along with her performances with Pacific Symphony and Opera Pacific, Jacobson plays with various chamber ensembles, covering a diverse assortment of musical styles, from classical to jazz fusion. She also enjoys playing with her church's praise band at Bethel Grace Baptist Church, where her husband Joe is worship pastor.

Michelle Temple

Harpist Michelle Temple has been a member of Pacific Symphony since 1994, and was awarded the position of Principal Harp with the Santa Barbara Symphony in 1991. Enjoying frequent visits to her hometown, she also serves as Principal Harp for Opera Santa Barbara. An active orchestral musician, she has performed with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, LA Opera, Opera Pacific, Pasadena Symphony, Long Beach Symphony, and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra.


László Mező, Cello, has forged a career as a soloist, recitalist, master teacher and chamber musician. He has performed extensively in Europe, Asia, and North and South America. Always eager to pass on his knowledge, Laszlo has conducted master classes in Japan, Brazil, Italy, Switzerland, Hungary and the United States. Mezo is currently an adjunct professor of cello at Chapman University and Saddleback College in California, and he was assistant teacher at the University of Southern California between 2007 and 2008. Currently residing in Los Angeles, Mezo is a sought after soloist and an active studio musician in Hollywood. He has played in many film scores, some most updated blockbusters include Ice Age, Life of Pi, Wolverine and The Lone Ranger.

SYMPHONY - cindy ellis Pacific Symphony, currently in its 38th season, celebrates a decade of creative music-making as the resident orchestra of the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. Led by Music Director Carl St.Clair for the past 27 years, the Symphony is the largest orchestra formed in the U.S. in the last 50 years and is recognized as an outstanding ensemble making strides on both the national and international scene, as well as in its own community of Orange County. Presenting more than 100 concerts and events a year and a rich array of education and community engagement programs, the Symphony reaches more than 300,000 residents—from school children to senior citizens.

The 2016-17 season marks Music Director Carl St.Clair’s 27th year leading Pacific Symphony. He is one of the longest tenured conductors of the major American orchestras. St.Clair’s commitment to the development and performance of new works by composers is evident in the wealth of commissions and recordings by the Symphony. In 2014, St.Clair assumed the position as music director of the National Symphony Orchestra in Costa Rica. His international career also has him conducting abroad several months a year, and he has appeared with orchestras throughout the world. He was the principal guest conductor of the Radio Sinfonieorchester Stuttgart from 1998 to 2004, where he completed a three-year recording project of the Villa–Lobos symphonies. He has also appeared with orchestras in Israel, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and South America, and summer festivals worldwide.

In North America, St.Clair has led the Boston Symphony Orchestra (where he served as assistant conductor for several years), New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic and the San Francisco, Seattle, Detroit, Atlanta, Houston, Indianapolis, Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver symphonies, among many.


Chapman University's New Music Ensemble presents works by current composition majors as well as those by many of the major composers of the last fifty years.  Instrumental and vocal faculty members, along with distinguished guest artists, often participate in the ensemble, offering students a chance to perform with their teachers and mentors as well as their peers.

New Music Ensemble Director Sean Heim has received numerous awards, honors, and commissions from such prestigious institutions as the Fromm Music Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, Meet the Composer, the American Music Center, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, the American Composers Forum, and the ASCAP Foundation – including the Rudolf Nissim Prize. His music has been performed to critical acclaim throughout Asia, Australia, Europe, and the United States by many distinguished performers, ensembles and, concert series including: Vicki Ray, Susan Ung, Joseph Wytko, Da Capo, the California E.A.R. Unit, the Moscow Contemporary Music Ensemble, Topology, the Los Angeles Percussion Quartet, Piano Spheres, Hear Now, the Focus Festival at Juilliard, and the Thailand International Composition Festival. His discography includes releases on Sono Luminus, Ein Klang, and Capstone Records.