Staff Report

The public is invited to attend the 38th annual Santa Ynez Valley Classical Music Series featuring renowned artists performing at St. Mark’s-in-the-Valley Episcopal Church located at 2901 Nojoqui Avenue in Los Olivos. The 2017-18 series continues on Saturday, Jan. 27 at 7 p.m. featuring organist Dr. Thomas Joyce, presenting a solo concert featuring St. Mark’s exquisite Schoenstein pipe organ. Joyce will perform organ music that spans the instrument’s rich history from the Renaissance to the modern day. The program will include an example of 16th century counterpoint by William Byrd, followed by masterpieces of J.S. Bach: the “Dorian” Toccata and Fugue, and his organ transcription of Violin Concerto in C Major by Antonio Vivaldi. Joyce will also play music from the Romantic Era, including Frank Bridge’s Adagio in E Major and rare gems by French composers Louis Vierne and Fernand de La Tombelle. He will conclude the concert with a premier of his own recently composed Toccata on Psalm 24: Lift up your heads, O ye gates.

Joyce currently serves as Minister of Keyboard Music at Trinity Episcopal Church in Santa Barbara. He has served as an organist at a number of prominent Episcopal churches and cathedrals in the United States including St. Paul’s, K Street and the National Cathedral in Washington D.C., St. Mark’s Cathedral in Seattle and Grace Cathedral in San Francisco. Joyce holds degrees in music from Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, Yale University Institute of Sacred Music and the University of Washington School of Music. He teaches organ lessons at Westmont College as well as private lessons at Trinity in organ, piano and voice and a piano accompanist with Adelfos Ensemble in Santa Barbara and choirs at Santa Barbara City College.

The 38th annual Santa Ynez Valley Classical Music Series continues through early May with these artists:

  • Friday, Mar. 9, 7 p.m.: The Radian String Quartet featuring Mary Beth Woodruff (violin), Jane Chung        (violin), Basil Vendryes (viola) and Andrew Smith (cello)
  • Friday, Apr. 27, 7 p.m.:  Robert Cassidy (piano) and Ani Aznavoorian (cello, Principal Cellist of          Camerata Pacifica)
  • Saturday, May 5, 7 p.m.: Nichole Dechaine (soprano) with Beverly Staples (piano)

Doors for each concert open 30 minutes prior to the start with tickets being sold at the door as well as online in advance at General admission tickets are $20 and student tickets are $10 (with any student ID). Plus, there will be a complimentary reception following each concert to meet the artists and enjoy conversation and refreshments.

St. Mark’s Priest and Rector Rev. Dr. Randall Day shared, “Music and the arts are key expressions of God’s ongoing creativity in the world. We invite all music lovers to share this incredible experience here in the Santa Ynez Valley.”  St. Mark’s Church is noted for its stunning acoustics and serene ambiance; and according to music critic Josef Woodward, “It’s a fine place to hear serious music.”

For patron and season ticket purchases and any questions, please call SYV Classical Music Series Director Linda Burrows at 805-688-7423 or the St. Mark’s Church office at 805-688-4454 or visit