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Backstage Spotlights: Behind the Scenes at the Ojai Music Festival

All photos by Susie Goodman

Ojai is a city, a bowl, a festival, a bit of magic and a place to be transported to once a year. This year the Music Director was Patricia Kopatchinskaja. Here are random snapshots of festival attendees at the 71st year of the Ojai Music Festival, June 7 – 10, 2018. We have snapshots of patrons sitting in the Bowl and their opinions, listeners at the free pop-up concerts, and of the city of Ojai as the host.

Patricia Kopatchinskaja, violin & director & the Mahler Chamber Orchestra at Libbey Bowl

Raulee Marcus, attendee of Bye Bye Beethoven said “tonight was a celebration of accomplished female performers and l loved that and l bet Beethoven would have liked it as well.” Raulee is on the Board of Governors of the Ojai Festival.

Ruth Eliel said “the festival is off to a great start because the Mahler Chamber Orchestra is fabulous. I’m so impressed.” Ruth is on the Board of Councilors of the USC Thornton School of Music.

Erica Clark said “l adore the festival because as Patricia Kopatchinskaja said yesterday it’s a chance to meet a new kind of beauty at every step.” Erica is Strategic Initiatives Coordinator, Carnegie Observatories.


Sue Bienkowski said “I’m at Ojai because it’s the most magical place to be and it’s the most magical place for music. What Tom Morris curates with his selected artistic director every year is always a surprise, is always stimulating, makes you think and that’s why l keep coming back.” Susan is on the Board Member of Jacaranda Music.


Anthony Romaniuk, Harpsichord and Piano & the Jack Quartet at Libbey Bowl.

Mother with infant and 4 year old attended her second day of free pop-up concerts in the park and said “I just like to expose my kids to new music – just in general l think it’s important.”

Motorcyclists Gilbert Gomez and his family including his nephews were riding through from Santa Paula and heard there was a music festival. Photographed here with a festival goer, Gilbert selects from the festival program the concerts to attend. Gilbert said “to me music is music” and they stayed.


Gilbert Gomez and his family.

Ojai is known for its delicious citrus fruits.

Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Musical Miniatures a Free Children’s Concert at the Ojai Center. Patricia eats an apple to show the children how sounds can be made from everyday life.

Here Patricia Kopatchinskaja blows up a balloon at the same concert to make a different sound.

Patricia Kopatchinskaja congratulates a young boy for attending the entire previous evenings concert at Libbey Bowl – she gives him a seat on stage.

Typical Ojai sentiments.

Written by:
Sheila Tepper
Sheila Tepper
Published on 06.21.2018

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