Music Box

April 21, 2024

Amalia Díaz, violin

Jubal Joslyn, tenor

Cathryn Wilkinson, piano


Sicilienne in E-Flat Major……….Samuel Dushkin, attrib. Maria Theresia von Paradis

Arise, My Soul, Arise……….Dan Forrest

Alborada (“Dawning of Day”)……….Marcela García Ordoñez, arr. A. Hernández


Shepherd Me, O God………Marty Haugen, arr. M. Hayes

Welcome to Amalia Díaz, a violinist and singer from Bucaramanga, Colombia, who performs regularly with ensembles and symphonies in the Monterey area. She holds a Masters in violin performance from the University of Southern Mississippi but her main passion is music education as a tool for social transformation. She is the Music Director of El Sistema Santa Cruz/Pajaro Valley chapter and conductor of the First Youth Orchestra in Watsonville. El Sistema is a network of children’s and youth orchestras, founded in Venezuela in 1975 by José Antonio Abreu. More than 250,000 children and young people have learned to play an instrument through El sistema, which has spread across the world.

The prelude begins with Sicilienne, which was published for violin and piano in the 20th century, but attributed to Maria Theresia von Paradis, an 18th-century composer, as a hoax. Although blind from a young age, Maria Theresia was a virtuoso pianist and she founded a school for the education of blind girls. She was the goddaughter of Empress Maria Theresa of Austria and was invited to perform in the courts of Queen Marie Antoinette and King George III.

Following Dan Forrest’s new tune for Charles Wesley’s text, “Arise, My Soul, Arise” is “Alborada” (the dawning of day). This music is subtitled “bambuco for violin and piano.” The bambuco is a traditional dance from the Andean region of Colombia that is popular throughout Latin America.