Patti Austin Launches MUSE/IQUE's Summer of Sound Festival Tonight

MUSE/IQUE, known for its counter-conventional performances that feel more like parties than formal concerts, launches "Summer of Sound" 2013 with "Lost in the Stars with Patti Austin," featuring the Grammy Award-winning legend, tonight, June 29, 2013, 7:30 pm, outdoors at Caltech's Beckman Mall in Pasadena.

Austin joins MUSE/IQUE Artistic Director Rachael Worby, who conducts the MUSE/IQUE Orchestra in a musical mash up of works by Brubeck, Beatles, Ellington, Weill, Paganini and more. Also spotlighted is critically acclaimed Concertmaster Robert Wilke. Gates open at 5:30 pm for dinner (ordered in advance) or bring-your-own picnics, with table and bleacher seating and plentiful free parking.

"'Summer of Sound' performances are 90 minutes of pure out-of the-box adventures in sound," says Worby, who founded MUSE/IQUE in 2011. "Linking master artists like Patti Austin with unexpected musical pairings represents what MUSE/IQUE is all about."

Worby coaxes Austin, a "vocal powerhouse," to explore the far reaches of her staggering stylistic range with repertoire spanning Kurt Weill's Lost in the Stars and Ira Gershwin's Swanee, Slap that Bass and Lady Be Good to Tena Clark's emotional Way Up There (written for NASA's Space Shuttle Challenger), Duke Ellington's apt Sophisticated Lady and the Beatles' Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds. A special Paganini match up also features Austin on Sam Coslo's hip jazz tune Mr. Paganini, which follows a blistering performance by MUSE/IQUE Concertmaster Roger Wilke of the second movement of Paganini's tour de force Concert No. 2, one of the most difficult pieces ever written for violin. Other orchestral works include Glinka's Russina und Ludmilla Overture, a Dave Brubeck medley and Weill's New York Suites: September Song and Mack the Knife.

MUSE/IQUE's "Summer of Sound" continues on July 27 with "Moving Pictures," featuring groundbreaking cellist Matt Haimovitz and actress Wendie Malick ("Hot in Cleveland") in a fresh take on motion picture scores by Elmer Bernstein, Jerry Goldsmith and Erich Korngold as well as a world premiere of a work by Peter Golub, prolific composer for films and theatre and director of Sundance's Film Music Program, and some Bach and Beethoven as well. It concludes August 17 with "Lose Your Senses with Ellis Hall," which brings together celebrated vocalist/pianist virtuoso Ellis Hall, former Tower of Power lead singer, with the MUSE/IQUE orchestra, for a blend of soul by Ray Charles, Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder, and beyond with works by Beethoven, Vivaldi and Bach, to celebrate life through music.

MUSE/IQUE, known for its inspired, unexpected live music events, connects master artists with new voices across a limitless range of styles. Its counter-conventional performances, which feel more like parties than formal concerts, link musicians with great thinkers and compelling visual, cinematic and dance artists. In the two years since MUSE/IQUE was founded by Artistic Director Rachael Worby, it has grown from one performance with a handful of devoted followers to a major cultural presence that reaches vast audiences. Its considerable membership currently numbers nearly 500 people. In the fall and spring, MUSE/IQUE presents "Uncorked" evenings at unconventional locations, and in the summer MUSE/IQUE features three outdoor "music parties" at Caltech's Beckman Mall, all curated by the innovative and visionary Worby. Among MUSE/IQUE's guest artists are Jessye Norman, Charlie Haden, Patti Austin, Mary Wilson, Flea, Rickie Lee Jones, Ellis Hall, Matt Haimovitz, Angela Bassett, Arturo Sandoval and more. Uncorked's "pop-up" venues have included Pasadena's Phoenix Decorating Center (where Rose Parade floats are constructed), Art Center College of Design Sculpture Garden, Castle Press (one of the nation's largest printing presses), backstage at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium and others. KIDS/IQUE!, a primary element of the organization, serves boys and girls, ages 12 to 18, in the San Gabriel Valley's network of foster care services by presenting ongoing interactive experiences with professional musicians and other artists designed to compliment the service goals of the foster care facilities even as they allow MUSE/IQUE to reach otherwise underserved youth. Other outreach programs include free and low-cost tickets for students and community groups, and "Free For All," a free annual concert featuring a fusion of music with family friendly surprises.

Caltech's Beckman Mall is located at 332 S. Michigan Ave. Pasadena CA 91106. Plentiful parking is free. To reserve a catered dinner that can be picked up on site, contact Perfect Equation Catering at (626) 529-5585. Concert tickets begin at $10 per person with top tier seating, $96 per person, available to MUSE/IQUE members at the $1,000+ level; students with ID are $10. MUSE/IQUE membership, which ranges from $250 to $2,500, includes a variety of special benefits including priority seating and services. For tickets and membership information, call 626-539-7085 or visit

Grammy winner Patti Austin crosses all musical genres, has made 17 solo albums, and has performed her award-nominated hit songs on the GRAMMYS and the Oscars. She will be inducted into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame in June. As a performer, songwriter and vocalist Austin has had a star-studded career that began at the age of four, making her one of the most beloved artists over the world and a mainstay on the Billboard Jazz Albums charts. Her most recent release, Avant-Gershwin, won Austin the Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Performance. Austin recently re-teamed with the WDR Big Band to record an innovative tribute to Duke Ellington, set for release in 2013. The daughter of jazz trombonist Gordon Austin and goddaughter of musical legends Jones and Dinah Washington, Austin made her stage debut with Washington at the world-famous Apollo Theater in Harlem. During the 70s she was the undisputed "queen" of the New York session scene; her voice was heard behind Paul Simon, Cat Stevens, JAmes Brown and Joe Cocker to Bette Midler, Roberta Flack, Luther Vandross and Diana Ross, among others. In the 80s, Austin earned a wider audience through her participation on a series of albums with Quincy Jones, including his Grammy-winning classic The Dude. Her early solo career resulted in the chart-topping, GRAMMY-nominated hit "Baby Come To Me," a now classic duet with James Ingram; and the Oscar nominated "How Do You Keep the Music Playing?" Austin's 1988 album The Real Me, one of the most popular items in her catalog, featured a powerful collection of pop and jazz standards including "Cry Me A River," "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" and "Mood Indigo." She also recorded for GRP and Warner Brothers. In addition, Austin wrote her own one-woman show, and co-created the musical extravaganza Beboperella, a modern-day, music-driven show that brings bebop to a new generation. She is the co-creator of Oh Freedom, a show exploring the African-American quest for freedom and equality in America. In addition, Austin has devoted considerable time to performing for AIDS-related organizations and is committed to bring awareness to the domestic violence crisis in the USA and beyond. Dedicated to social issues and mentoring those in need as well, Austin created the "Over My Shoulder" mentoring foundation.

A Southern California native, violinist ROGER WILKIE has enjoyed a rich and varied musical life. His professional career began in 1983, when at the age of 21 he joined the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, eventually being appointed principal second violin. He has since returned to the ensemble as guest concertmaster and has served as guest concertmaster with such groups as Los Angeles Opera, the Round Top Festival Orchestra of Texas, the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, and the Real Filharmonia de Galicia, Spain under music director Helmut Rilling. Presently, Wilkie's orchestral life is centered on the Long Beach Symphony, where he has served as concertmaster since 1990. He has appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras, including the Long Beach Symphony, the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, LACO, and the CarMel Bach Festival Orchestra and given solo recitals for the San Luis Obispo Mozart Festival, LACMA/KUSC-FM broadcasts and Swiss National. He is also frequently heard on NPR's Performance Today. An active chamber musician, Wilkie has participated in the Santa Fe, La Jolla, Martha's Vineyard and Mainly Mozart festivals and also served as the Principal Violinist of the Camerata Pacifica of Santa Barbara. Wilke, a founding member of the Angeles String Quartet (1987-1993), is a member of the Pacific Trio with cellist John Walz and pianist Edith Orloff. Wilkie's career also extends to the Hollywood studios, where he has participated in the soundtracks for more than 1000 films as well as television recordings. In 2005 he received the honor of serving as concertmaster for John Williams' scores for "Indiana Jones IV" "Munich" and "Memoirs of a Geisha."

RACHAEL WORBY, hailed by the Los Angeles Times as "inspiring and accessible," is that rare conductor who is a skilled communicator with wide-ranging repertoire. Distinguished as a visionary in the orchestral world, she is celebrated internationally for her extraordinary talents and exuberant style, as well as her versatile command of all musical genres - symphonic, operatic, pops, classics, and 21st century. A dedicated orchestra builder, she is credited with the remarkable growth of organizations under her leadership and is considered an unforgettable, inspiring and charismatic presence on the podium. Worby's dynamic energy, coupled with the highly successful results she has achieved with diverse organizations, has served to create a demand for her skills on the international level. As a guest conductor, she has led orchestras throughout Europe, South America, Australia and Asia. In March 2011, Worby founded MUSE/IQUE to bring fresh perspective to live music and multidisciplinary arts. During her tenure as Music Director of the Pasadena Pops Orchestra (2000-2010), Worby expanded the orchestra's performance season, as well as its national and local profiles. A hallmark of Worby's career has been activist belief that education and community engagement work is inseparable from and essential to main season offerings. In addition to appearing in grand concert halls, Worby has led some of the world's best musicians at locations ranging from the coAl Fields of West Virginia to community centers in Harlem and South Central Los Angeles. In 2006, at the invitation of acclaimed American soprano, Jessye Norman, Worby conducted both the China Philharmonic Orchestra in Beijing and the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, accompanying Norman in her first appearances in mainland China. They continue to appear together at music festivals and concert halls throughout the world. Other guest conducting positions have included the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Barcelona Opera Orchestra, Barcelona Symphony Orchestra, Brazilian Symphony Orchestra, Bucharest Philharmonic Orchestra, Halle Orchestra, Irish Chamber Orchestra, Israel Chamber Orchestra, Israel Opera Orchestra, Manchester Camerata, Nagoya Philharmonic Orchestra, National Romanian Opera Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra of Colombia, New York City Ballet, Norddeutscher Rundfunk-Hannover, Orquesta Sinfonica de Medellin, Québec Symphony Orchestra, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Seoul Philharmonic, Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz and Transylvania Philharmonic. Worby first rose to prominence during her 17-year tenure as music director and conductor of the Symphony Orchestra in Wheeling, West Virginia. She also served as music director and conductor of the Young Peoples' Concerts at Carnegie Hall and as assistant conductor for the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Worby served on the Honorary Committee of Carnegie Hall's HONOR! Festival, for which she served as artistic advisor for numerous events and as guest panelist. She has been honored with numerous awards, including the Spirit of Achievement from Albert Einstein College and the Women of Excellence award from the YWCA, the degree Doctor of Humanities, honorus causa from Marshall University, the degree of Doctor of Letters, honorus causa from Claremont University and the Presidential Medal of Honor for her consummate lifetime achievements from Claremont University. Worby received a four-year Presidential appointment to the National Council of the Arts. In 1990 she was nominated for an ACE Award for two programs she created, narrated and conducted for the Disney Channel. In addition, as First Lady of West Virginia (1990-1997), Worby created and hosted the nationally-acclaimed Arts and Letters Series broadcast on public television, which presented Carl Sagan, Tom Wicker, Jesse Jackson, Andrew Young, Bob Woodward, Taylor Branch, Harry Belafonte and dozens of other luminaries. She also led a ground-breaking state-wide campaign, "Thanks A Million," to raise one million dollars to eradicate illiteracy, and is responsible for the creation, in perpetuity, of The Governor's School for the Arts.

The "Lost in the Stars with Patti Austin", featuring Rachael Worby, conductor/currator, Patti Austin, singer, and Roger Wilke, concertmaster with the MUSE/IQUE Orchestra is set for Saturday, June 29, 2013. 5:30 pm - gates open for dinner (ordered in advance) or bring-your-own picnics); 7:30 pm - performance.

GLINKA Russlan und Ludmilla Overture
PAGANINI Concerto No.2 (third movement)
SAM COSLO Mr. Paganini
Duke Ellington Sophisticated Lady
G. and I. GERSHWIN Swabee
Slap that Bass
Lady Be Good
GEORGE BRUBECK It's about Time (medley)
Kurt Weill New York Suite:
September Song
Mack the Knife
Lost in the Stars
BEATLES Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds
Other works to be announced

It all takes place at Caltech's Beckman Mall, 332 S. Michigan Avenue, Pasadena, Calif. Concert Tickets: begin at $10 per person; top tier seating, $96, is available only to members at the $1,000+ level
Students with ID: $10 (MUSE/IQUE membership, from $250 - $2,500, includes special benefits including priority seating and services). For tickets and information, call 626-539-7085 or visit

Artists, program and ticket prices subject to change.

More On: Patti Austin, Patti Austin, Kurt Weill, Ira Gershwin, Duke Ellington, Dave Brubeck, Moving Pictures, Wendie Malick, Elmer Bernstein, Jerry Gold.

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by Peter Danish