DEDICATED TO PRESERVING A HISTORICAL LANDMARK DESIGNED BY RENOWNED ARCHITECT, JULIA MORGAN
The 62nd Annual Fine Arts Awards recognizes excellence in Classical Music.
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE WINNERS!
Photo Credit: Renoda Campbell Photography
1st PLACE - Amelia Long, Alto Saxophone
Atascadero High School, Senior
2nd PLACE - Andy Shen, Piano
San Luis Obispo High School, Junior
3rd PLACE - Lauren Weyel, Flute
San Luis Obispo High School, Senior
Karen Clark, Oboe
Templeton High School, Senior
Mark Kovacs is a well-known and respected teacher of violin and viola in San Luis Obispo County. He has spent twenty-five years as a classroom teacher. In 2016 he founded the Central Coast String Academy.
Most recently, Mr. Kovacs recorded with Andrea Bocelli the “Amore” video for PBS. He is currently Music Director and Conductor of the San Luis Chamber-Orchestra.
Clifton Swanson has enjoyed being a part of San Luis Obispo’s music scene since arriving in 1967 to teach in the music department at Cal Poly.
In 1971 he was involved in the formation of the San Luis Obispo Mozart Festival, and was soon invited to conduct the San Luis Obispo Symphony. In 1984, he became chair of the Cal Poly Music Department, retired from conducting the SLO Symphony to become a member of the bass section, and continued as music director of the Mozart Festival until his retirement from Cal Poly in 2004.
He has been involved from the outset in the conception and design of the Christopher Cohan Performing Arts Center, and served for nine years as a member of the Foundation for the Performing Arts Center board of directors. He completed two terms as president, and continues his involvement as an Honorary Board Member.
Clifton is married to Jane Swanson, recently retired performer and current teacher of the French horn. They have two children; Erika Norris, M.D., who won the Monday Club Competition as a pianist in 1984, and Christopher Swanson, who graduated with a degree in violin performance from Indiana University and currently performs and teaches violin in Portland, Oregon.
Cassandra Tarantino has her in Master’s degrees Choral Conducting from San Jose State University and Performance Flute from California State University, Northridge.
Mrs. Tarantino has participated in music festivals as a flutist and conductor at the Oregon Bach Festival, Aspen Music Festival, Apple Hill Chamber Music Festival in New Hampshire, Abeyrstwyth Music Festival in Wales, and Morges Chamber Music Festival in Switzerland. She took sabbatical in Northern Ireland to study Classical and traditional music and the Irish-Celtic Language. In 2005 Mrs. Tarantino was hired by Cuesta College to begin a choral program at the campus in Paso Robles. The Cuesta Concord Chorus has since become a thriving community of singers that regularly performs locally and tours to Europe.
In 2013, Mrs. Tarantino co-founded the Central Coast Gilbert & Sullivan Company with Marcy Irving, a community-based opera company. In 2017 Mrs. Tarantino was hired as the Director of Music at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, San Luis Obispo. Mrs. Tarantino also conducts, teaches private flute and voice, music theory and music history at Cuesta college.