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A musical journey: ProMusica Arizona celebrates 15 years

12/06/17

Elizabeth Medora
Staff

NORTH VALLEY – ProMusica Arizona is celebrating 15 years of bringing music to the Valley, and this season showcases the variety of musical experiences PMAZ brings to life. The next concerts will be Dec. 16 and Dec. 17, featuring Christmas music and more.

This year's holiday concert will feature Bach’s Magnificat and selections from Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite, as well as Let It Snow; Winter Wonderland; Silent Night, Holy Night; O Come, All Ye Faithful; and the finale with chorale and orchestra, Sleigh Ride. The Dec. 16 concert takes place at Cross of Christ Lutheran Church in Anthem, at 7:30 p.m., and the Dec. 17 concert takes place at American Lutheran Church in Sun City, at 3 p.m.

Following the Christmas concerts will be a Champagne Salon event in January, which PMAZ Executive Director Yvonne Dolby noted is “a celebration of PMAZ’s 15th Anniversary Season, but it is also a fundraiser to support our music programs.”

“It will be held at an exquisite private home in Anthem that will be specially decorated for the occasion, and will feature PMAZ soloists and ensembles for the evening’s entertainment,” Dolby described in an email interview. The event includes hors d’oeuvres, desserts, and champagne, wine, and other beverages.

ProMusica concerts not only provide a musical journey for audiences, they provide an uplifting, energetic experience. At PMAZ’s November concert, Discover: The Spirit of American Explorers, the performers’ enthusiasm for the music brought the spirit of the selections to life. PMAZ performances at Cross of Christ Lutheran Church in Anthem provide an intimate setting with a limited number of seats; every attendee has a good view of the stage and the musicians.

Founded in 2003, PMAZ grew quickly, and within a year, the choir had over 50 performers and the orchestra had grown to 35 musicians.

Dolby noted that PMAZ relies heavily on volunteers for many duties.

“From the beginning, the organization has consisted largely of volunteers who give thousands of hours of their time annually to rehearse and perform,” Dolby said.

“We are extremely proud of our artistic staff and performers who rehearse together for weeks prior to each concert and practice on their own and in small ensembles,” Dolby said. “While we started as an Anthem group, we have artistic staff, singers, and instrumentalists who travel from every corner of the metro Phoenix area to be a part of PMAZ.”

Dolby also referred to PMAZ’s audience engagement and affordable ticket prices.

“Elements have been added to the concerts to increase audience engagement and enhance musical performances. An invitation to perform at Carnegie Hall in New York last April was a testament to the talent in our group,” Dolby said.

PMAZ attracts talented performers from around the Valley, as well as guest artists from all over the country. Each concert season, PMAZ publicizes auditions at the beginning and in the middle of each season and encourages singers and instrumentalists to audition.

“We now have three artistic staff members: Artistic Director, Dr. Adam Stich; Assistant Chorale Director, Patti Graetz; and Assistant Orchestra Conductor, Dr. Cullan Lucas. The three of them have a wealth of talent, experience, and expertise they bring to our organization,” Dolby said.

For Dolby, who has been a part of ProMusica nearly seven years, what makes the PMAZ experience special is the amazing people who are part of the organization.

“In a word, it’s the people that make my experience special. Our musicians are truly a group of talented, kind, fun, dedicated individuals,” Dolby said. “I’ve also had the privilege to meet so many wonderful people who attend our concerts, generous donors who support PMAZ, and committed volunteers who work behind the scenes to make us successful. They all understand the important role the arts play in enhancing our community.”

See an upcoming concert schedule and purchase tickets at www.PMAZ.org or learn more by calling (623) 326-5172.