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Santa Monica College Hosts Concerts in March

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By Daniel Larios
Special to the Lookout

March 3, 2014 --  From jazz to classical to contemporary Lithuanian music, Santa Monica College's Music Department will showcase an eclectic set of concerts in March.

The concerts -- and a special lecture/concert -- will be performed every week of March at the Broad Stage or the Edye at the SMC Performing Arts Center located at Santa Monica Boulevard at 11th Street.

The series kicks off March 4 at 7:30 p.m. in the Broad Stage with the SMC Symphony Orchestra playing instrumentals and vocal solos.  The conductor for the evening will be James Martin, chair of the Music Department and director of the orchestra.

The following week, Dr. Yulia Koslova, an accomplished recitalist and professor of piano at SMC, will be hosting a unique lecture/concert on Contemporary Lithuanian music.

The program will feature music on the piano by contemporary Lithuanian composers, including Algiradas Martinaitis, Gintaras Sodeikas and Vidmantas Bartulis.

Scheduled for March 11 at 11:15 a.m. in The Edye, the concert will include the US debut of Martinaitis' two-piano “Clavier of Life Giving Water” and Sodeikas’ two-piano “Tone Ontology No. 2.”

For jazz aficionados, The Edye will be hosting two shows featuring bassist Kevin Brandon on March 14 at 7 p.m. and again at 9 p.m.

The concert is a celebration of the release of his new CD “Brandino and Friends (Live at Seven Grand DTLA)” and will include performances by Brandon and his quintet of original music and standards. 

Known to his friends and fans as "Brandino," Brandon has earned seven Grammy Awards and has worked with some of the biggest names in the industry, including Justin Timberlake, Beyoncé, Mary J. Blige, Stevie Wonder and Outkast. Brandon also toured with the legendary Aretha Franklin for more than 20 years.

“Picking up the bass at a young age, Brandino used music as a means to survive the mean streets of South Central Los Angeles in the early 1960s and '70s,” according to All About Jazz, an online Jazz magazine.

“Brandino is serious about life and seriously passionate about his music and art,” according to the site. “Keeping it real in out and of the studio, Brandino has a reputation of laying down a track on the first take.”

The SMC Symphony Orchestra will perform again on The Broad Stage on March 23 at 4 p.m.

This time, the program will celebrate Russian symphonic music and will also feature youth soloists from the prestigious Carnegie Hall Royal Conservatory and the Westside Music Foundation.

The last event will be the SMC Jazz Band conducted by Keith Kiddmont on March 30 at 4 p.m. in the Broad Stage.

The ensemble will perform with Russell Ferrante, a founding member of the Grammy award winning jazz fusion group “Yellowjackets.”  Ferrante is known for his “daringly original compositions and lyrical soloing style,” according to SMC officials.

For tickets and information, call (310) 434-3005 or (310) 434-4323, or go to

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