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You're Invited!   FREE CONCERT


Mozart, Mason & More
Sibelius & Rossini

Conducted by Wayland Whitney

Sunday, May 7, 2023 
2 pm to 3:30 pm

Sierra College, Nevada County Campus
Multipurpose Room N12, 250 Sierra College Drive
Grass Valley, CA 95945

(Follow signs. Free parking.)


Click here to reserve your free tickets



OLLI introduces composer Quinn Mason to Nevada County. Born 240 years after Mozart, Mason is just 27 years old. He has accomplished much in his musical career. Many prestigious orchestras in the US have performed his work.

“I was completely overwhelmed by the music performed at my first live concert. A few years later, after starting cello lessons, I would experiment with the etudes and add notes or take notes out. Hearing something I had created out of nothing was an indescribable experience.” Taken from an interview posted on Castle of our Skins blog. 

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Petite Symphonie de Chambre Contemporaine

(après Milhaud)

Quinn Mason (b. 1996)

I.   Overture

II.  Nocturne

III. Etude


Belshazzar's Feast O. 51

Jean Sibelius (1865 – 1957)

I.   Oriental March

II.  Solitude

III. Nocturne

IV. Khadra's Dance


Overture to Il Signor Bruschino

Gioachino Rossini (1792 – 1868)

Symphony No. 40 in G Minor, K. 550

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 – 1791)

I.   Molto allegro

II.  Andante

III. Menuetto. Allegretto – Trio

IV. Finale. Allegro assai


Overture to The Abduction from the Seraglio, K. 384

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 – 1791)

Read about the composers

Quinn Mason
b. 1996

Quinn Mason is a composer and conductor based in Dallas, Texas. He currently serves as Artist in Residence of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra. He also recently served as the Detroit Symphony Orchestra's Classical Roots composer in residence for 2022 (the youngest composer appointed to that role) and as KMFA's inaugural composer in residence. Quinn has been described as “a brilliant composer just barely in his 20s who seems to make waves wherever he goes.” Texas Monthly wrote, "One of the most sought after young composers in the country." His orchestral music was performed by many renowned orchestras in the US, including the San Francisco Symphony, Symphony San Jose, UK's Sheffield Philharmonic Orchestra. Quinn’s chamber music has been performed and presented by celebrated organizations such as Voices of Change, The Cliburn, One Found Sound and loadbang, As a conductor, Quinn has guest conducted numerous orchestras. In April 2023, he will debut with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center. “Petite Symphonie de Chambre Contemporaine (après Milhaud) was commissioned by Orlando Cela and the Lowell Chamber Orchestra as a response to Darius Milhaud's 4th chamber symphony (1921). This composition follows the original form of Milhaud's work and explores my own compositional voice and style while still paying respect to the construction of the composition it was inspired by.

Jean Sibelius
1865 – 1957

Jean Sibelius was a Finnish composer of the late Romantic and early-modern periods. He wrote that he composed a trio and was working on another when he was just 16. He is widely regarded as his country's greatest composer. His music is often credited with having helped Finland develop a national identity during its struggle for independence from Russia. Belshazzar's Feast is incidental music by Jean Sibelius to a play of the same name by the journalist, poet and playwright Hjalmar Fredrik Eugen Procopé. Sibelius has attracted both the praise and the ire of critics is that in each of his seven symphonies he approached the basic problems of form, tonality, and architecture in unique, individual ways. On the one hand, his symphonic (and tonal) creativity was novel, while others thought that music should be taking a different route. Sibelius's response to criticism was dismissive: "Pay no attention to what critics say. No statue has ever been put up to a critic."

Gioachino Rossini
1792 – 1868

Italian Gioachino Rossini began to compose by the age of 12; his first opera was performed in Venice in 1810 when he was 18 years old. Signor Bruschino, or The Accidental Son, is a one act operatic farce by Rossini to a libretto by Giuseppe Maria Foppa. The opera was first performed in Venice at the Teatro San Moisè in 1813. Rossini composed five pieces for Venice’s Teatro San Moisè, ending with Il signor Bruschino. These farse were short pieces. They were intimate, with a cast of five to eight singers, always including a pair of lovers. The style called for much visual comedy improvised by the players. It has been described as "a vivacious and fast-moving musical comedy, whose graceful score reveals traces still of Cimarosa and even Mozart." Il signor Bruschino is forward-looking in its use of new musical effects. This lighthearted, energetic overture is one of several by Rossini to have gained considerable importance in the modern concert repertoire.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
1756 – 1791

Born in Salzburg, then in the Holy Roman Empire, Wolfgang Mozart showed prodigious ability from his earliest childhood. He composed from the age of five and performed before royalty. Symphony No. 40 has elicited varying interpretations from critics. Robert Schumann regarded it as possessing "Grecian lightness and grace". The most common perception today is that the symphony is tragic in tone and intensely emotional; for example, in The Classical Style, Charles Rosen calls the symphony "a work of passion, violence, and grief." Ludwig van Beethoven knew the symphony well, copying out 29 bars from the score in one of his sketchbooks. The copied bars appear amid the sketches for Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, whose third movement begins with a pitch sequence like that of Mozart's finale. Franz Schubert copied down the music of Mozart's minuet. Schubert’s minuet of his Fifth Symphony strongly evokes Mozart's. Although interpretations differ, the symphony is unquestionably one of Mozart's most greatly admired works, and it is frequently performed and recorded. Mozart wrote Overture to The Abduction from the Seraglio six years prior to his Symphony No.40. This farcical romance set in a Turkish harem raised German light opera to the level of great art without altering its traditional features.

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