Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Ayya Sobhana speaks at the Alameda Sangha Sunday, November 2

Sunday, November 2
Ayya Sobhana speaks at the Alameda Sangha
 Buena Vista United Methodist Church, 2311 Buena Vista Ave, Alameda, CA

Ayya Sobhana will the the guest speaker at the Alameda Sangha.
 She will guide us in a 30 minute meditation and speak for 45 minutes on
the dharma. There will be time for questions and answers. More information
about Ayya Sobhana is available here:

This event is given on a donation basis to to provide an opportunity to practice generosity
 and to make teachings available to all.

The Alameda Sangha meets every Sunday evening at 7pm.
The Alameda Sangha is a place to practice and discuss
mindfulness meditation and Buddhist teachings. Founded
in 2008, today we are led by three teachers of the Theravada
tradition, Pauletta M. Chanco, Rebecca Dixon, and Deb Kerr.
We are blessed to have these three dharma teachers to guide us on a regular basis.
We occasionally organize daylong retreats and other events supportive to the
meditation practice.

 Please visit the Alameda Sangha web site at to learn more
about our teachers and our sangha.

Alameda Sangha
Buena Vista United Methodist Church
2311 Buena Vista, Alameda, CA 94501

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Reproductions After Artists' Deaths Haunt Todays' Art Historians

Degas bronzes controversy leads to scholars’ boycott

Fears of legal action if authenticity questioned at Hermitage seminar

The disputed plasters — experts are even wary of scholarly debate
Degas experts boycotted a Hermitage colloquium arranged in part to discuss a group of controversial Degas bronzes, cast from a set of plasters recently discovered at the Valsuani foundry outside Paris. The refusal of the scholars to attend reflects the growing problem of art historians avoiding questions of attribution, even at scholarly conferences.
The seminar at the State Hermitage Museum, on the wider issue of “Posthumous Bronzes in Law and Art History”, was held in St Petersburg (26-27 May). Papers were presented on Léger, Archipenko, Moore and Dalí, but Degas was by far the most controversial case study. A museum spokeswoman says that the conference was arranged because the Hermitage wants to acquire more 20th-century bronzes.

The Degas experts who were invited to the seminar, but declined, include Sara Campbell, who recently retired from the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, Catherine Chevillot from the Musée Rodin, the consultant and art historian Joseph Czestochowski, the leading independent curator Richard Kendall and Anne Pingeot, formerly of the Musée d’Orsay.

Walter Maibaum, the New York dealer who commissioned the casts from the plasters, says that scholars “have a responsibility to seriously study them”. None of the experts would discuss the situation on the record, but several reasons have been given to explain the boycott. Some curators are at museums that do not allow them to comment on the authenticity of works owned by dealers or private collectors. None of the experts accepts that the new find represents early plasters—and some simply want to avoid becoming embroiled in the debate. Most importantly, there are increasing concerns, particularly in America, that specialists could find themselves facing legal problems if they publicly question authenticity, as has happened to scholars over the work of other artists.

The obscure terms in which the discussion has been couched are illustrated in the recent “Edgar Degas Sculpture” catalogue published by the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. In a footnote, it says that the new casts “are intentionally not included”, without further explanation. In the April issue of the Burlington magazine, Richard Kendall merely notes that the recent bronzes have created a “note of uncertainty”. Avoiding giving his personal view, he simply states that “they have failed to sway the Degas specialists and the major auction houses”.

The Hermitage seminar raised further issues. It was initiated after an approach by the M.T. Abraham Center for the Visual Arts, Paris, which owns two sets of the 74 bronzes. The centre suggested an exhibition at the Hermitage, but the museum did not want to proceed until there was a scholarly discussion. Initially, it was thought that the foundation might be sponsoring the colloquium, but it was soon realised that this could be seen as prejudicial. The centre’s director, Amir Kabiri, tells The Art Newspaper that he is not funding the meeting, although when asked about possible future donations, he said that he would “always be honoured to co-operate with the Hermitage”.

After the scholarly boycott, the Degas plasters and the resulting bronzes remain in limbo. It is now clear that they are not late 20th-century fakes, but the key question is when they were made.

The experts believe the plasters were made after the Second World War and are, therefore, fairly far removed from the artist’s intentions, while those who commissioned the casts are convinced that they are much earlier and may well be from Degas’s lifetime. The story began two years ago, when a set of newly cast bronzes was unveiled at the Herakleidon Museum in Athens (The Art Newspaper, March 2010, p29). Earlier bronzes, which are in numerous museums, were cast from 1917 to 1936 and from 1958 to 1964 and were made via the original waxes, which survived after the artist’s death.


Two New York-based dealers discovered the plasters: Walter Maibaum, who runs Modernism Fine Arts and the Degas Sculpture Project with his wife, Carol Conn, and Gregory Hedberg, a consultant at Hirschl & Adler. The plasters were found at the Valsuani foundry, outside Paris, which had taken over the stock of the Hébrard foundry. Hébrard had earlier cast Degas’s bronzes for the artist’s descendants.

Leonardo Benatov, who owned Valsuani, agreed to cast a new set of bronzes for Maibaum. So far, 16 sets have been cast and rights have been acquired to cast a further 13. Their value will depend on whether they are accepted as authentic, but appraisers suggest that a set of 74 could be worth around $20m. On this basis, all 29 sets would be worth more than $500m.

The M.T. Abraham Center has bought two sets. The first has been displayed in a travelling exhibition, which began in Athens and went on to the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, three Bulgarian venues (the National Art Gallery in Sofia, the Varna Archaeological Museum and the City Art Gallery in Plovdiv), the National Museum of Fine Arts in Havana, the Valencia Institute of Modern Art and the Evagoras Lanitis Centre in Limassol. The show is currently at Zagreb’s Galerija Klovicevi (until 3 June). It is notable that many of these venues are not mainstream international-level museums.

The New Orleans Museum of Art was due to exhibit the bronzes last winter and then help to arrange an American tour. This has been postponed because of questions about the status of the works.

One set of bronzes was bought by Yank Barry, a Canadian rock star turned businessman. A further set was bought by Artco, a Parisian company that sells Dalí bronzes. Another belongs to the Connecticut collectors Melinda and Paul Sullivan, who anonymously lent five bronzes for an exhibition at the Hill-Stead Museum in Farmington, Connecticut (until 24 June).

In a paper that Maibaum prepared for the Hermitage colloquium, he argues that “all the plasters were made from Degas’s waxes before the Hébrard foundry began casting bronzes in 1919 and some were made during the artist’s lifetime [he died in 1917]”. He believes that the plasters were made from Degas’s original waxes by Paul-Albert Bartholomé, a sculptor and friend of Degas. If correct, then it means that the newly cast bronzes may be closer to Degas’s originals than the casts made from 1919 to 1964.

The situation of the bronzes has been examined by Geraldine Norman, a British adviser to the Hermitage’s director, Mikhail Piotrowski. Her paper is the best non-specialist summary of the issues. She concludes that the plasters must have been made by 1955, the year the Hébrard family sold Degas’s wax originals to America (they were bought by Paul Mellon and most were later donated to the National Gallery of Art).

Although it remains unclear exactly when the plasters were made, Norman suggests that the key figure was Albino Palazzolo, the chief caster at Hébrard. “The simplest answer is that they were made by Palazzolo in or around 1955, direct from the waxes before they were sold to America.” She believes that, “based on all the physical and scientific evidence, there is every reason to conclude the plasters are authentic, and therefore the posthumous bronzes cast from the plasters are authentic as well”.

The new bronzes are slightly different from the 1919 to 1964 casts. This raises the question of whether the mid-20th-century or early 21st-century bronzes are closer to Degas’s original, undamaged waxes.

In addition to considering the newly discovered plasters and bronzes, Norman’s paper also points out that the total number of earlier (and entirely separate) Degas bronzes could number 1,200. She points out that nearly half were cast before 1936 and raises questions about the circumstances in which the remainder were cast post-1936, as well the role of Palazzolo.

There is growing pressure from scholars outside the narrow band of Degas specialists for these issues to be resolved. Steven Nash, a sculpture expert and the director of the Palm Springs Art Museum, was invited to the Hermitage colloquium, although he was unable to attend because of other commitments. “What we need is an objective discussion on the possible origin of these plasters,” Nash says.

The Hermitage conference, which was presided over by Piotrowski, was attended by Russian and international curators and sculpture specialists. It called for more detailed labelling of bronze casts by museums and the art trade, to help with transparency.
More from The Art Newspaper


13 Aug 12
15:42 CET
In addition, In its analysis the laboratory also rebutted a key point raised by some museum conservators, who concluded the reason plasters are larger than bronzes is because, in part, “.... plaster expands upon setting.” While it is well known by foundries and most sculpture specialists that plaster does not expand, it was nonetheless important to scientifically test a Degas plaster for confirmation. The petrography laboratory reported: “None of the minerals observed in the Degas sample were susceptible to expansion” and “No evidence of expansion was observed.”
13 Aug 12
15:42 CET
Early dating of the plasters was substantiated scientifically. While plaster itself cannot be dated, the University of Arizona laboratory was able to perform radiocarbon tests of fibers embedded in the plasters.The results indicated the fibers pre-date 1955. An independent laboratory in St. Paul, Minnesota, American Petrographic Services performed significant additional tests. Its personnel analyzed the component materials in a Degas plaster (fig. 33) and compared them with the component materials in a certified lifetime (pre-1918) Rodin plaster. A modern plaster (circa 1995) was also tested. The component materials and percentage ratios in the Rodin and Degas plasters were consistent. The modern plaster contained materials not found in the Degas or Rodin plasters. These results provide strong evidence to conclude the Degas plaster was made during the same period as the Rodin (before circa 1920).
20 Jun 12
15:13 CET
Molecular analysis of the plasters composition would shed light on the origins of the plaster itself and therefore provide dating information. If the value of the bronzes is indeed in the 500 million range then it would be well worth the expense to determine a more exact origin of the chemicals used in the composition of these plasters. There are other examples of Degas plasters that could be compared to these newly discovered ones. The inverse of this suggestion would be that if the plasters are fraudulent, what definitive proof would be used to prove the plasters fake ? This analysis could be easily accomplished in 90 days. Why has it not been done ?
10 Jun 12
11:52 CET
Now--afterward , won't it be funny if the bronzes turn out to be authentic Degas after all!
7 Jun 12
17:37 CET
June 7, 2012 “In Wilken’s essay we read that in 1921 Francois Thiebault-Sisson recalled that Degas had once said: I modeled animals and people in wax for my own satisfaction, not to take to rest from painting or drawing, but to give more expression, more spirit, and more life to my paintings and drawings. They are exercises to get me started. My sculptures will never give that impression of completion that is the ultimate goal of the statue-maker’s trade and since, after all, no one will ever see these efforts, no one should think of speaking about them, not even you. After my death all that will fall apart by itself, and that will be better for my reputation." Additionally, under Association of Art Museum Directors' endorsed CAA ethical guidelines: "any transfer into new material unless specifically condoned by the artist is to be considered inauthentic or counterfeit." The dead don't condone. Gary Arseneau artist & scholar Fernandina Beach, Florida
4 Jun 12
15:51 CET
I think finger printing needs to be applied to sort this out as Im sure there will be plenty to cross reference.

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Eileen Ormiston - Holiday Open Studio and Sale November 15 & 16 San Anselmo CA

Eileen Ormiston - Holiday Open Studio and Sale:  Watercolor paintings, T-shirts (children and adults)
Refreshments:  scones, shortbread, tea, wine. 
November 15 & 16, 11-6 p.m., Sat. & Sun
Studio at 38 Dutch Valley Lane, San Anselmo CA  94960
 Tel:  (415) 457-9295

A native of Scotland, watercolor artist Eileen Ormiston, now lives in San Anselmo, California. Her paintings which blend flowers with still lifes and landscapes are in homes in the United States, Canada, England, Scotland, Sweden, Japan and New Zealand. Observing familiar objects such as favorite pieces of china, oranges, pears and apples will often spark the beginning of an idea for a painting. Painting flowers from her garden, reflections on water, shadows and changing light are a constant source of interest to her. Portal Publications of Novato, California have produced posters from her paintings, and Camden Graphics in London, England have produced cards from many of her paintings. She is represented by the Hanover Fine Arts Gallery in Edinburgh, Scotland. One of her paintings was juried into the 2014 edition of American Art Collector produced by Alcove Books of Berkeley, California. She is a member of the Marin Society of Artists of California. She enjoys participating in Marin Arts Council Open Studios, and the Marin Art Festival at Lagoon Park in San Rafael, California.

B.A. Queens College, Glasgow, Scotland, 1964
M.A. San Francisco State University, California, 1972
M.Ed. San Francisco State University, California, 1987

Art Background:
The artist has studied watercolor with artists John Komisar, Ken Potter, Helen Stanley, Elaine Badgley-Arnoux, and Peter Kitchell. She has also taken watercolor classes at San Francisco State University and College of Marin.

Art Show Awards and Juried Exhibitions
Mill Valley City Hall, Solo Show, January, 2013
Falkirk 2011 and 2012 Annual Juried Exhibition
Bouquets to Art - de Young Museum San Francisco April 2010
Belvedere-Tiburon Library, Tiburon, Solo Show August, 2008
Napa Library, Napa, Solo Show August, 2008
Ross Valley Winery, San Anselmo, Solo Show August, 2007
International Festival Exhibition, Hanover Fine Arts, Edinburgh, Scotland 2001-2008
Marin County Fair, Honorable Mention July, 2007
Marin Arts Festival at the Civic Center Lagoon 2002-present
Marin Open Studios 1999-present
Marin Society of Artists, Annual Member Show 2002-present
Marin Society of Artists, Spring Rental Show 2002-present
Marin Society of Artists, Fall Rental Show 2002-2008
Fairfax Library, Fairfax, Solo Show December 2006
Marin Arts Council, Civic Center, San Rafael 2003-present
Artisans Gallery, Group Show, Mill Valley 2000-2005
Two Bird Café, San Geronimo, Solo Show September, 2005
San Francisco Women Artists Gallery 2000-2004

Works on Consignment and Collections
2009, 2012, 2013 American Art Collector
Marin General Hospital
Queen of the Valley Hospital, Napa
Bank of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Marin Society of Artists Rental Gallery
Portal Publications, Novato
Camden Graphics, London, England
Marcel Schurman, Fairfield, California
Eileen Ormiston - Holiday Open Studio and Sale:  Watercolor paintings, T-shirts (children and adults), tote bags, greeting cards, Christmas cards, decorative tiles, and many more new designs and gift items. 

Monday, October 27, 2014

A presentation by Susan J. Montgomery The Endless Possibilities...Tiles from the Collection of the Two Red Roses Foundation Sunday, November 16, 2014 at 7:00 pm-Alameda Architectural Preservation Society Event

Alameda Architectural Preservation Society Event

A presentation by Susan J. Montgomery
The Endless Possibilities...Tiles from the Collection of the Two Red Roses Foundation

Sunday, November 162014 at 7:00 pm
Immanuel Lutheran Church
1420 Lafayette Street, Alameda, CA 94501
Parking available at the corner of Chestnut Street and Santa Clara Avenue

Suggested Donation: $5

For more information about AAPS events visit or call 510-479-6489

At the November 16th presentation, Susan J. Montgomery, a consultant to the Two Red Roses Foundation, will show a sampling of more than two hundred examples of individual tiles, panels, fireplaces and overmantels, even a mural and entire bathroom faced with tile.  American and British tile makers, including Grueby, Hartford, Marblehead, Rookwood, Newcomb, Batchelder, Rhead, Morris and Doulton, will be represented.
Susan has written the forthcoming catalogue, The Endless Possibilities: Tiles from the Collection of the Two Red Roses Foundation and The Aloha Boathouse and the Iris Bathroom, published in 2013. She earned her Ph.D. in American and New England Studies at Boston University, where she wrote her dissertation on the ceramics of William H. Grueby. She has curated exhibitions at the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art, Tarpon Springs, Florida, the Addison Gallery of American Art in Andover, Massachusetts, and the Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College. She works as an Independent Scholar from her home in Maine. 

The Two Red Roses Foundation is a non-profit educational institution dedicated to the acquisition, restoration, preservation, and public exhibition of important examples of furniture, pottery and tiles, lighting, woodblocks, textiles, photography, architectural faience, and fine arts from the American Arts & Crafts Movement. The Two Red Roses Foundation of Palm Harbor, Florida, exists to foster public recognition and appreciation of the high quality craftsmanship and design philosophy of the early 20th century.

Over the past sixteen years, Rudy Ciccarello, President of the Two Red Roses Foundation, has amassed an outstanding collection of Arts & Crafts-era furniture, pottery, tiles, metalwork, light fixtures, woodblock prints, and photographs. In 2017, the Museum of the American Arts & Crafts Movement, now in the planning stages in St. Petersburg, Florida, will become the permanent home of the foundation’s collection. 


Bookends by Dirk van Erp and D'arcy Gaw, San Francisco, 1910-1911, copper, with tiles designed by Addison LeBoutillier for the Grueby Faience Company, Boston. Image: Two Red Roses Foundation.

Peacock panel,1910, designed and made by Frederick Hurten Rhead at the Academy of Fine Arts, People's University, University City, MO. Image: Two Red Roses Foundation.

Friday, October 24, 2014

We all love Sherlock, but we should all really love Doyle. By Alexandra K. Vicknair

We all love Sherlock, but we should all really love Doyle.

By Alexandra K. Vicknair   alexandrashistorymusings

     The (Mis)adventures and (a)musings of a historian

“Life is infinitely stranger than anything which the mind of man could invent. We would not dare to conceive the things which are really mere commonplaces of existence. If we could fly out of that window hand in hand, hover over this great city, gently remove the roofs, and and peep in at the queer things which are going on, the strange coincidences, the plannings, the cross-purposes, the wonderful chains of events, working through generations, and leading to the most outre results, it would make all fiction with its conventionalities and foreseen conclusions most stale and unprofitable.”
Arthur Conan Doyle, The Complete Adventures of SherlockHolmes

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Golden Gate Boys Choir & Bellringers Old English Christmas Feast and Revels Sunday, December 21st

Step back in time with us and enjoy the exciting sights, beautiful sounds and tantalizing aromas of an old English Christmas Feast.  Come experience the drama, the pageantry, and the elegance of a 16th century celebration. You will marvel at the sights and sounds
of the performers and musicians.

Golden Gate Boys Choir & Bellringers
Old English Christmas Feast and Revels
Pre-feast bell ringing, five course dinner. Readings and Carols.
Sunday, December 21st
Saint  Mary's Cathedral Conference Center
(downstairs under the main church)
1111 Gough St,
San Francisco, CA 94109
Free Parking
4:00 p.m.
$150 plate, black tie optional

Call GGBC office to leave mailing address to receive an invitation, which will include meal
choice options and other important information. Reservations Required Phone: (510) 887-4311

Proceeds benefit the Golden Gate Boys Scholarship Programs

Friday, October 10, 2014


October Friday in the California valley can be sultry gorgeous. 

Even the mushrooms are popping up overnight and living their cycle for a coupla days. 

More of the same tomorrow.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Alameda Sangha Sun 7-8:30 Accepting Uncertainty & Picnic

Celebrity Organ Recital Jean Baptiste Robin Sunday, October 19

Celebrity Organ Recital
Jean Baptiste Robin
Sunday, October 19, 2014
4:30 p.m.
Jean Baptiste Robin (Versailles Chapel organist), presents a program of French organ music and transcriptions including works
by Couperin, Debussy, Bizet and Ravel

Followed by a reception hosted by San Francisco Chapter of The American Guild of organists and St. Mary's College.

St. Mary’s College Chapel
St Marys Rd
Moraga, CA 94575
(925) 631-4569
$20 suggested donation

Jean Baptiste Robin studied composition and organ (with Michel Bouvard and Olivier Latry) at the Conservatoire de Paris,[3] receiving five first prizes. He continued composition studies with George Benjamin (King's College London) and organ studies with Louis Robilliard (Conservatoire de Lyon, Prix de Perfectionnement), Odile Bailleux (Conservatoire de Bourg-la-Reine, Prix de Perfectionnement), and Marie-Claire Alain (regional conservatory of Paris). He was named organist at the Poitiers Cathedral in 2000 and "local" organist for the Chapel of Versailles. He currently teaches organ and composition at the conservatoire in Versailles.

Robin is particularly known for performances of French Baroque organ music, such as his recordings of the complete organ works of Louis Marchand and François Couperin,[4] and also for his interpretations of the works of Jehan Alain. He has had compositions commissioned by Pierre Boulez and the Ensemble InterContemporain, the Orchestre National de Lyon, the Philharmonia Orchestra, and Radio France. In 2010, Naxos Records released a CD of Robin playing his own organ works.[5]

Upcoming Concerts at St. Dominic's Catholic Church

Upcoming Concerts at St. Dominic's Catholic Church

Sunday, November 2, 11:30 am, Mozart Requiem, in the context of Solemn Mass.  St. Dominic's Schola Cantorum, SF Choral Artists, The Festival Orchestra, Jonathan Dimmock, organ, Simon Berry, conductor.
St. Dominic's Catholic Church
2390 Bush St., San Francisco, CA 94115,
 Free.  Ample free parking

Sunday, November 30, 7:30 pm, Advent Lesson & Carols.  St. Dominic's Schola Cantorum, Simon Berry, conductor. 
St. Dominic's Catholic Church
2390 Bush St., San Francisco, CA 94115
 Free.  Ample free parking

Monday, December 15, 7:30 pm, Chrismas carol Concert, including Vivaldi's Gloria and works by
James MacMillan etc.  St. Dominic's Schola Cantorum, The Festival Orchestra, Simon Berry,
St. Dominic's Catholic Church
2390 Bush St., San Francisco, CA 94115,
 Free.  Ample free parking

The Golden Gate Boys Choir is currently holding Auditions!

The Golden Gate Boys Choir is currently holding
Auditions! No experience is necessary.
Just a Love for Singing and a Heart for Music!
We welcome membersip inquiries throughout the year. 
Boys and parents are invited to make a personal audition
appointment with the director.

Boys ranging in age from 6 to 12 years old or boys
with changed voices from 13 to 18 years old are
 accepted into the Golden Gate Boys Choir for a
 probationary three-month period.  This time
 gives him and his family a chance to see the
level of commitment and benefits of membership.
 Rehearsals for Apprentices are held once a week
plus an additional once a month all-choir rehearsal. 
Minnesingers and Master Singers attend two rehearsals
a week plus the monthly all-choir rehearsal.

The Golden Gate Boys Choir is a member of Pueri Cantores USA and
Pueri Cantores International, the official choral music association of the
 Roman Catholic Church for boy~, girl~ and children's choirs throughout the world.
 We are a regional Catholic Boys Choir, which draws many of our member
 boys and families from parochial and private Catholic Schools.  However, boys of any
 denomination are welcome as choir members, keeping in mind that we sing
liturgical music for Masses and other liturgical events, Christmas Carols and
other religious music, as well as folk songs, selections from Broadway musicals
and patriotic pieces.  Pueri Cantores International states that anyone
who is willing to "sing to the world of God's peace" through music is a
welcome collaborator in our efforts to praise God, provide inspiration and
offer an excellent music education to our members.
 (510) 887-4311

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Studio Grand Opening of award winning Bay Area artist “Bebe” Friday October 24 from 4 – 7PM Saturday October 25 11 – 4PM

Studio Grand Opening of award winning Bay Area artist “Bebe.” 
Hamilton Art Center
789 Hamilton Parkway
Novato CA 94949
Friday October 24 from 4 – 7PM 
Saturday October 25 11 – 4PM

Her newest art installation are her Infinity Rocks.
They are all unique in design and size with some embellished with found objects.
These amazing rocks are transformed using intricate detailing
with stunning results.  Her graphics talent can be seen at her studio
with her large scale prints that are used in custom window shades
and back-lit wall hangings.  Not to be missed is her other passion Altered Books.
Having received countless awards she is a Bay
Area legion in this field.

Jerome Lenk, Concert Organist Oct 19, 2014 5:00 PM The Cathedral of Christ the Light

Jerome Lenk, Concert Organist
Oct 19, 2014
5:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Enjoy the sounds of the magnificent Conroy Memorial Organ as we welcome renowned organist Jerome Lenk to The Cathedral of Christ the Light.  Free-will offering.

The Cathedral of Christ the Light
2121 Harrison Street,
Oakland, CA 94612

Admission is free of charge, with a  free-will offering.
(510) 832-5057

JEROME LENK currently serves as
Director of Music and Organist for
Mission Dolores Basilica in San
 Francisco.  He has performed
recitals and accompanied the
 outstanding Basilica Choir in
California, Mexico, and Italy.
Mr. Lenk has recently become a
published composer, with his
 arrangement of Jesus Walked
 This Lonesome Valley just released
from GIA Publications in Chicago.
He actively composes and arranges
 primarily liturgical music for the
 Basilica and has written several
 psalm and mass settings.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Fado & Tango: A Unique Musical Event October 29 At Berkeley’s Freight & Salvage

Fado &Tango: A Unique Musical Event 

At Berkeley’s Freight & Salvage

Ramana Vieira Fado-inspired Portuguese World Music

  Co-billed with Redwood Tango Duo Electric Tango

   For An Evening of Fado and Energetic Tango

Open dance floor!

Doors open at 7p.m. show starts at 8p.m.

  Vieira is joined by Chilean Guitarist/Percussionist Tomas Salcedo and cellist Gretchen Hopkins and Alberto Rameriz on bass


Freight and Salvage
2020 Addison Street 

Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 644-2020 /

v   Ramana Vieira is “the new voice of Portuguese world music.” -Mundo Portuguese Magazine

v  “Conservatory-trained singer Ramana Vieira adds a New Age sensibility and instrumentation to the music with cello and drums.” - New York Times

A rare opportunity to hear Portuguese fado music performed live when California-based fado singer and composer Ramana Vieira brings her dramatic and powerful voice to the Freight and Salvage Oct. 29th. Joining her on stage is the red hot Redwood Tango Ensemble, for a first time exclusive concert presentation of two acclaimed Bay Area artists doing a night of Tango and Fado.

Ramana and her group will perform traditional, ballad-style Fados that pay homage to the “Queen of Fado,” Amália Rodrigues, along with up-tempo compositions from their 2010 album, Lagrimas de Rainha, and new compositions written and arranged for their upcoming album, Windows of Luso Sol. Vieira’s new work captures influences from all the countries of Portuguese language and cultural heritage in a musical tapestry that ranges from whispering, haunting ballads to collaborations featuring the works of famous Portuguese-Canadian poet Euclides Cavaco.  

Ramana Vieira has been described by Mundo Portugues as the “New Voice of Portuguese World Music.” She has headlined the world's largest Portuguese festival, the New Bedford Portuguese Feast in Massachusetts, and performed at the 2010 Encontro Festival in Macau. One of her original songs, “Unido Para Amar,” was played for the 2006 Winter Olympics opening ceremony, and she was chosen to sing for the 50th Grammy Awards special MusiCares benefit honoring Aretha Franklin.

Ramana was recently honored to be exclusively invited by United States Congressman Jim Costa to perform for the president of the Azores alongside the internationally acclaimed guitarrista and artist Chico Avila.

Fado, the most widely recognized music of Portugal, is a passionate, soul-stirring music with soaring vocals and dramatic tales of love, loss and redemption. Legendary fadista Amália Rodrigues popularized fado in the 20th century, and today, platinum-selling Portuguese singers Ana Moura and Mariza are selling out concert halls in the US. The New York Times has recognized Ramana Vieira as an American at the forefront of the fado resurgence.

“Nobody else is doing what we are doing with fado,” Vieira says. Part of her innovative approach to the music is in the instrumentation. Traditionally, fado was music for voice and the guitarra Portuguesa, a 12-string guitar derived from a type of African lute. But as Larry Rohter of The New York Times has noted, "Conservatory-trained singer Ramana Vieira adds a New Age sensibility and instrumentation to the music with cello and drums." Ramana’s ensemble includes Tomas Salcedo on Portuguese violao guitar, Gretchen Hopkins on cello, and Alberto Ramirez on electric bass.

Ramana’s personal relationship to fado music lies deep in her family history. Her grandfather was a well-known musician and composer from Madeira Island, Portugal. Ramana was born in San Leandro, California, to Portuguese immigrants, and was exposed to the voices of Portugal’s past at a young age. “During my childhood, I sang with my mother to Amália Rodgrigues and other fabulous fadistas that were part of her special record collection,” said Vieira.

Her passion for music continued as she matured and eventually she attended the American Conservatory Theatre where she did her vocal training with Faith Winthrop, San Francisco's grande dame of song and one of the most respected singers and vocal coaches on the scene today. Along with singing, Ramana studied drama and dance as well as performing in theatrical productions.

Although she had dreams of a Broadway career, her direction shifted abruptly when a famous music producer inspired her to embrace her Portuguese roots. Shortly after that she found herself on an unexpected journey to Portugal where she had the opportunity to perform with local fado singers and musicians, bringing the house to its feet with her authentic, yet individual style. “It was there I discovered that there was nothing in the world more gratifying to me than singing fado.”

Ramana Vieira