The Big Picture

Music in the Mountains (MIM) is a unique organization that marries world-class performances with a deep commitment to music education. Our location in the beautiful Sierra Nevada foothills’ historic gold rush communities of Grass Valley and Nevada City leads a special ambience to everything.

At the heart of MIM is the SummerFest classical festival. In the days leading up to July 4th, it’s a thriving performing arts festival celebrating music, community, art and culture. The concerts culminate in a joyous celebration of our country’s birth.

SummerFest features the MIM Festival Orchestra and soloists – comprised of extraordinary professional musicians from all over the country – and our own MIM Chorus of dedicated volunteers. You’ll thrill to powerful masterworks, pop favorites, and new pieces hot off the presses.

SummerFest takes place in several different venues:

  • The Nevada County Fairgrounds, in the charming “red barn” of the Amaral Center – magically transformed into an elegant concert hall – as well as outdoors on the lawn under the stars amid the tall Ponderosa pines.
  • Peace Lutheran Church with its fantastic acoustics.
  • The Dunham Estate where great music, food and atmosphere combine for an unparalleled experience.

Woven throughout MIM is a deep commitment to music education. Balancing in-depth initiatives such as our nationally recognized Young Composers Project, and broad reach programs such as Carnegie Hall’s Link Up, MIM’s multi-faceted approach touches the lives of over 5,000 students each year. We work closely with school districts, music teachers and parents in advocating for the importance of music education. And where schools cannot provide due to lack of budget, MIM steps in to create solutions. Such programs include Take 5 for Music, Link Up, Peers for Peers and MusicLive, all of which bring classical music to school age children.

About an hour’s drive from both Sacramento and Lake Tahoe, the region is known for its thriving arts and culture scene, historic architecture, extraordinary landscape, and growing eco-tourism. California Gold Country, including Nevada City in particular, has been listed among the top 10 travel destinations by Lonely Planet. We are rated #2 of best “river cities” in America by Outside magazine.  For more on the region, check out Go Nevada County.

Meet Our Staff

Jenny Darlington-Person

Executive Director

Jenny Darlington-Person was born and raised in Nevada County where she currently lives with her husband, children, and four pets. She has been attending MIM concerts since she was a child in the 1980s and became a member of the Chorus in 2006. In November of 2018, she became the executive director. Since that time, she has overseen a major office move, a normal SummerFest season, and successfully steered MIM through a year of virtual concerts and education programs producing over 250 hours of content for the community and beyond. In 2000, she earned her juris doctorate with honors, Order of the Coif from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in Women’s Studies and Legal Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Prior to working for MIM, she practiced law for seventeen years in Nevada, Placer, and surrounding counties. She also taught law school for seven years working at both McGeorge Law School and Lincoln Law School teaching courses in business law; research and writing; and appellate and oral advocacy.

Ryan Murray

Artistic Director and Conductor

Ryan Murray is currently the Associate Conductor of the Modesto Symphony Orchestra, Music Director of the Modesto Symphony Youth Orchestra, and Artistic Director and Conductor of Music in the Mountains. He is also the newly appointed conductor for the Sacramento Youth Symphony’s premier orchestra and the Auburn Symphony. An award-winning opera conductor, Ryan spent his early career working as an assistant conductor and repetiteur [a tutor or coach of ballet dancers or musicians, especially opera singers], and is currently the Music Director of Opera Modesto. He has served as assistant conductor for opera productions at the Sacramento Philharmonic, is the past Music Director of Fresno Grand Opera, and previously worked as a staff conductor for the Bay Area Summer Opera Theater Institute (BASOTI) and The Opera Academy of California in San Francisco. Effortlessly moving between genres, Ryan currently enjoys a wide range of performance genres and platforms, including traditional orchestral and operatic repertoire, pops performances, movies in concert, and a notable emphasis on contemporary American operatic works.

Kevin Ross

 Donor Services & Sponsor Manager

Kevin Ross moved to Grass Valley in 1976 with his immediate and extended family, where they owned and operated a tire store in the Brunswick basin for fourteen years. His grandmother inspired him through encouragement and exposure to fall in love with singing choral music. This was further supported by all the public schools he attended here in Grass Valley: from Mrs. Rocker’s second grade class where Kevin sang everyday with his classmates while she would play the piano, to singing in the Nevada Union chamber choir with the legendary Don Bagget. While earning a degree in Secondary Education from Reno Nevada, he found small choirs to join to fulfill his passion to sing. Soon afterwards, he moved back to Grass Valley with his three-year-old son Avery, knowing it was a wonderful community for his son to grow up in. Soon he auditioned and joined the Music in the Mountains chorus. Kevin is an active member in the community, volunteering for other nonprofits, and singing and acting in local theater companies.

Nancy Donahue

Patron Services Manager

Nancy Donahue has been a member of the MIM staff for over 25 years. Along with recently setting up her remote box office (most of the time on the porch of her cottage in the forest), she is enjoying learning new technical skills for presenting virtual MIM events. Formerly an elementary teacher, technical writer, secretary, and music copier in the LA music business, she says her favorite job has been working at MIM. Along with fulfilling her dream of being a part of a creative team preparing for events, she also delights in engaging with the patrons and volunteers! Music is her first love; she has been in the MIM chorus since 1991, plays piano, and recently took up the violin after many years in order to play in the Sierra College volunteer OLLI orchestra (in the very back, she says). She now has some extra time to get back to her second love of painting and is also looking forward to “socially-distanced” kayaking and camping with friends this summer.

Hilary Hodge

Marketing Manager & Volunteer Coordinator

Hilary Hodge has worked for nearly a decade as a marketing professional specializing in community outreach through digital marketing and innovative technology. She is a councilperson on the Grass Valley City Council. As a member of the Rural Working Group for the California League of Cities, Hilary has worked closely with government and policy makers on bridging the digital divide for Rural California. Hilary sits on the Board of the Nevada City Chamber of Commerce and serves as the City Liaison to the Greater Grass Valley Chamber of Commerce. She graduated from UC Davis in 2004 with a Degree in English Literature.

Wayland Whitney

Youth Orchestra Conductor

Wayland Whitney was the founding conductor of our Youth Orchestra and returned in 2021 to that position after earning his master’s degree in conducting. He also serves as the MIM Assistant Conductor. He is the conductor of the Modesto Youth Symphony Orchestra and co-founded the Placer County Youth Orchestra in Roseville, served as assistant conductor for Rancho Cordova based Symphony D’Oro, and has written and arranged music for a series of Auburn Symphony school outreach programs.

Marge Shasberger

Education Programs Manager

Marge Shasberger was born in Pensacola, FL, spent her early years in Buffalo, NY, and then moved to southern California where she attended junior and senior high school. During her adolescent years she worked on a thoroughbred racing horse rehab and breeding farm to support her own horse. She went on to earn a B.A. in Music. Several different jobs followed: teaching band and choir in private music academies and public schools and administrative work that included with a bank that was closed by the FDIC! A move to Nevada County led to administrative work in the Placer County Office of Education and back to school, where she earned her M.A. in Informational Technology. She then began working with main-frame computers, and training teachers and administrators. She “retired” and promptly became office manager at her brother-in-law’s dental office for several years. She “retired” again and volunteered at MIM before being hired on staff. All the while, she has taught children’s music at church and is still teaching handbells there today.

Shannon Devir

Education Grants Manager & Youth Orchestra Assistant Conductor

Flutist and piccolo player Shannon Devir received her Bachelor of Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Her principal teachers include Timothy Day, Catherine Payne, and Keith Underwood. She is a member of the InConcert Sierra Orchestra and freelances with the Victoria Symphony, Ballet Victoria, and Opera Pacific. Ms. Devir has held teaching positions at the University of San Francisco, the San Francisco Waldorf School, and Nevada City School of the Arts. She is currently the Assistant Director of the Music in the Mountains Youth Orchestra and enjoys sharing her love of music through different MIM education projects and teaching flute privately. Backpacking, sailing, and costume design keep a smile on her face when she’s not making music.

Kimberly Ewing

Young Minds Teaching Artist

Kimberly Ewing – Kimberly is a Teaching Artist for MIM’s Music for Young Minds program. She has been a credentialed public-school teacher for over twenty years, with arts education as her focus. She has taught, coached, and mentored other educators in the latest California Arts Standards and arts integration methods. She has taken Carnegie Hall’s Musical Explorers Professional Development and now reaches nearly ten music classes each week. She’s a local performing artist in theatre and dance and she’s a broadcaster on the local radio KVMR station.

Meet Our Board

Timothy Geckle

President

Tim Geckle is a Minister, Attorney, and Farmer. His professional career began as a Youth Minister with a graduate degree in religion from Catholic University. Thereafter he continued to serve various Christian and Interfaith communities in many different capacities. He received his law degree from the University of San Francisco and practiced as a corporate attorney with the firm of Piper and Marbury (now DLA Piper). For 25 years Tim was Senior Vice President and General Counsel for The Ryland Group, a NYSE national homebuilder headquartered in the Los Angeles area. Most recently, he and his fiancé bought a 6-acre farm in Grass Valley. Their greatest joy is growing vegetables, playing on the land, and enjoying the richly artistic community of Grass Valley. Music in the Mountains reminds them that music gives us a future of hope and happiness.

John Jeffery

Vice President

​John is a mostly retired professional chaplain and clinical educator.  His career includes a decade of service as parish pastor; 12 years as a non-profit organizational and program consultant; a hospital/hospice chaplain and was a director of spiritual care services for Kaiser Permanente in Northern California.  John is a graduate of The Pacific School of Religion/Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley and holds a Master of Divinity and Doctor of Theology degrees and has extended graduate studies in Social & Environmental Ethics.  He still works some as founding Director of The Pacific Institute for Essential Conversations.  John lives with his wife Nancy in Nevada City.

Andy Bernadett

Treasurer

Andy Bernadett has long had roots in Grass Valley. Although he spent his early years on a small farm in the Chico area, he graduated from Nevada Union High School. Then it was on to UC Davis and a degree in fermentation science which eventually led to a job as the first brewer for the Samuel Adams brewery in Boston. Back in Grass Valley a few years later, he earned an MBA at UC Davis and worked for a couple years in the alternative energy business in Sacramento until the commute became overwhelming. His wife, Kim Zwick, then graciously offered him a position at Full Circle Financial, a financial planning and tax preparation business, which they continue to operate, along with Kim’s son, Ty, here in Grass Valley. His specialty is as a licensed professional fiduciary involved in trust administration…and riding tandem across the USA with Kim. When not working or riding, Andy frequently texts his kids to see if they’ll respond.

Cara Jones

Secretary & Orchestra Representative

Cara Jones is on the board because I value the important partnership between the Board and its orchestra musicians. I also believe that access to high quality classical music has never been more important, and we ALL have a part to play in bringing high quality musical performance to the community and making sure music education is for all kids. Hornist Cara Jones is an active free-lance artist in Northern California and a member of the Sacramento Choral Society Orchestra. She has performed with many orchestras, including the Sacramento Philharmonic and Opera, Modesto Symphony, and Santa Rosa Symphony, to name a few. Cara performs with the Arizona Musicfest Festival Orchestra and the Music in the Mountains Festival Orchestra. A Pi Kappa Lambda graduate of California State University, Sacramento, she earned both her Bachelor of Music and Master of Music Degrees with Honors. Cara has been an active teacher and coach for brass ensembles and youth symphony members. She and her husband live in Elk Grove, CA with their son, daughter, and two cats.

Julia Amaral

Board Member

Julia Amaral’s post-stewardess career got its start in Real Estate in Marin County during the 70’s and 80’s. During that time, she served for several years on the Board of the Marin Ballet. In 1993, she married Mark Strate, moved to Grass Valley and managed their own properties. She also chaired the Nevada County AirFest for two years and served on the board of the Foothill Theater Company. Currently, she serves on the Hospice of the Foothills Board of Trustees, the Center for the Arts Advisory Committee and the MIM Education Committee, as well as continuing to manage their real estate properties. She serves on the Board “to grow, improve, and share classical music” in our community.

Terry Brown

Board Member

Terry Brown received his bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Florida State University. Upon graduation, he immediately moved to California and lived in San Francisco for several years, working in Customer Relations for a major corporation before moving to Nevada County. In 1982 he helped found Music in the Mountains, was its first Executive Director, and stayed in that position for 18 years – learning via the school of hard knocks and liberally begging, borrowing, and stealing from others. He then became a Financial Advisor. Today, he is an independent advisor through Commonwealth Financial Network, working as a Certified Financial Planner to help clients reach their financial goals. He consults with other area non-profits, is a proud Rotarian, and enjoys traveling, gardening, tinkering with solar projects, and cycling. Although he is somewhat retired from his solo career, he continues to derive joy from raising his voice in song with the other MIM choristers. He is a lifelong learner and enjoys the discoveries that each day brings.

Judith Ciphers

Board Member

Judith Ciphers was born in San Francisco and spent her first 50 years in the Bay Area. After a career with Pacific Telephone and Telegraph she and her husband retired and moved in 1992 to Nevada City, hardly believing the good fortune that brought them to this beautiful location, including a sense of community they had not experienced before. While contributing financially to a number of the local organizations that do necessary and valued work in the community she was especially drawn to Music in the Mountains: first to the Chorus that offered the opportunity to do the singing she loves and lives, and to the professional orchestral concerts. She joined the volunteer group that supports the entire organization, serving as their President for a term, was President of the Chorus, and continues on the Board of Directors that steers MIM, applying leadership skills from her corporate life. She says: “This is where I found the core of my new community and where I can feel I’m contributing to the quality of life in Western Nevada County.”

Harriet Davis

Board Member

Barbara Hampton

Board Member

Prior to MIM, Barbara Hampton and her husband had two dinner theaters with 300 employees. They produced all of their own productions and won numerous awards. They have also purchased, remodeled, sold, or rented 27 houses in a two-year period.

George Husaruk

Board Member

Nancy Kendrick

Board Member

“Music has been a vital, life-giving part of my journey. At a very young age I remember listening to my Dad play piano and singing with my Mom – it was just there, a part of our family from the beginning. Piano lessons and choral music at school helped me to begin to understand the power and mystery of one of the most beautiful art forms on our dear planet. Whether performing or listening, music has always been and will continue to be, one of the joys of my life. Its breadth of expression, ability to evoke emotion, touch our spirit, lift us up and bring us together, are just a few reasons I support the mission and vision of Music in the Mountains.” Nancy started piano at age six and taught as a teenager into her 30’s. She was on the MIM Board 1984-87 before moving to the Bay Area where she sang as a volunteer in the San Francisco Symphony Chorus for 22 years. In 2019, when she and her husband moved back to Nevada County, she rejoined the MIM Chorus. She was a Senior Communications Consultant with Kaiser Permanente Health Plan working in Public Affairs, Marketing, and HR Communications. She and John (Jeffery) enjoy their four children, sons and daughters-in-law, and three grandsons. Along with traveling, reading, and gardening, fixer-upper projects are always on the to-do list. Nancy wants to be an advocate for helping people to experience and participate in music that unites us as a community.

Robbie Merchant

Chorus Representative

When not singing in the MIM Chorus, Robbie can be seen in musical theatre productions around Nevada County, as well as at his “day job” with Quietech as a computer technician.

Nancy McRay

Board Member

Music has been Nancy’s main focus and identity for her entire life. She first heard of MIM in 1997 when her son, Scott Macomber, was asked by Paul Perry to play principal trumpet in the SummerFest Orchestra. She traveled from Chicago to attend several MIM concerts and collaborated with Scott in a recital for MIM’s 1999 SpringFest, never dreaming that she would be a Californian in another decade!  Born and raised in Springfield, Illinois, Nancy earned music degrees in piano from Denison University and Northwestern University. For over forty years, she had a busy music career in the Chicago area, teaching and performing. She especially enjoyed being a musical director for Broadway shows. When Nancy moved to the area in 2011, Sierra Stages coaxed her out of retirement to play keyboard for a dozen shows. Locally, she also accompanied for the MIM Chorus and Sierra Master Chorale, and she continues to play for/with many individual musicians. She and her husband, Richard (her friend since second grade), share their home in Lake Wildwood with Lily, her seventh dachshund!

Mark Strate

Board Member

Mark Strate started his work career in the travel business in Southern California, primarily in resort hotel sales. Over the course of time, he was employed by hotel chains in Hawaii, Tahiti and a worldwide chain. He was then offered an opportunity to manage the daily operations of a small gourmet food manufacturing business in the San Francisco Bay Area. After several years in the food business, he sold his interest in that company, married Julia, and moved to Grass Valley. While they had been attending MIM concerts before living here, they soon became more involved. Mark joined the MIM Board for the first time in 2000. He also served on a small advisory committee at Habitat for Humanity before serving on their Board Development Committee for four years. Mark is now back for his third stint as a Board member.

The Music in the Mountains Chorus

The Music in the Mountains Chorus is an auditioned community chorus, made up of about 80 singers from the region. We perform several times a year, sharing our love of great choral music with the community.

The Chorus is directed by Artistic Director and Conductor Ryan Murray, who since 2008 has been superbly guiding the growth and improvement of the group. Recent performances include an array of great choral works, such as Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, Mozart’s Requiem, Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Toward the Unknown Region, Gilbert & Sullivan’s H.M.S. Pinafore, and Faure’s Requiem.

The chorus has its roots in the Golden Chain Chorale of the 1970s, a group of 20-40 members, part of the Sierra Musical Arts Association. In the mid-1980s Music in the Mountains formed (with the chorus at its core) and renamed the group the Festival Chorale. The chorus has since grown into one of the top community choirs in the Sierra foothills. Many of the founding members are still part of today’s choir.

Since performances have expanded beyond MIM’s seasonal festivals, the choir dropped “festival” from its name in 2013, becoming the MIM Chorus.

Auditions are held at the first rehearsal of each semester, in February and September. If you are interested in joining, send an email to Conductor Ryan Murray at [email protected]. He can also be found on his website. For all questions and information, you may also contact the current Chorus President, Joan Mosley.

Interested singers should be able to read music and have sight-reading skills. The individual auditions will be in three parts: vocalization, pitch memory and sight singing.

Rehearsals are held Monday evenings from 7-9 pm, September through mid-June, with a break during January. Rehearsals are at Peace Lutheran Church (828 West Main Street) in Grass Valley. Concert and additional dress rehearsal dates are announced early in the season, and members are expected to be available. Singers must read music and attend rehearsals regularly and are asked to purchase the group’s official “concert black” attire.

Once each semester, in the fall and spring, the Chorus hosts an all-day workshop and retreat on a Saturday. With the visiting vocal experts, pot luck lunch and extensive work on our music for the season… we have a great time!

Chorus Charter

Singer Participant Agreement

The Music in the Mountains Orchestra

The MIM Festival Orchestra is anchored by our long term Core members and augmented by professional players from across the country.

SummerFest Core Orchestra

Violin I

Robin Mayforth, Concertmaster
Karen Shinozaki Sor, Asst Concertmaster
Mutsuko Ikenouchi Tatman
Eline van den Ende
Daniel Zuckerman
Matthew Oshida
Sarah Wood
Anna Gendler

Violin II

Rae Ann Goldberg, Principal
Michelle Maruyama
Brooke Aird
Claudia Fountain
Randi Soule
Eugenia Wie
Ryo Fukuda
Sergi Goldman-Hull
Kristen Autry

Viola

Tamas Strasser, principal
Chad Kaltinger
Melinda Rayne
David Thorp
Nancy Ewing

Cello

Janet Witharm, Principal
Adelle-Akiko Kearns
Noriko Kishi
Ellen Sanders
Dahna Rudin

Bass

Bill Everett, Principal
Andy Butler
Richard Worn

Flute

Jane Lenoir, Principal
Carol Adee

Oboe

Neil Tatman, Principal
Jason Sudduth

Clarinet

Tom Rose, Principal
Geordie Frazer

Bassoon

Carla Wilson, Principal
David Riddles

French Horn

Richard Burdick, principal
Cara Jones
Philip Richardson

Trumpet

Scott Macomber, Principal
Kale Cumings

Trombone

Don Benham, Principal
Wayne Solomon
Doug Thorley, bass trombone

Tuba

Tony Clements

Percussion

Matthew Darling, Principal
Scott Ney
Thomas Rance

Mission & Values

Our Mission and Values

We envision a thriving community inspired by transformative music.

  • We are serving a community of engaged, connected, and caring people in harmony with each other and their surroundings.
  • We are presenting inspiring concerts and accessible educational programs for everyone.
  • Our music brings hope, joy, and comfort.

Our Mission is to inspire, engage, and connect our community through extraordinary musical experiences.

  • We will provide transformative music by presenting inspirational concert experiences.
  • We will present accessible education programs for everyone.

Core Values

Accessibility: Our concert programming, presentations, and music education programs are approachable and accessible for all.

Artistic Excellence: We value performances at the highest level of talent and artistry and strive to present guest artists and performers who embody this standard of excellence.

Building Community: We value creating connections among the diverse members of our community, fostering communication and unity through the beauty of music.

Collaboration: Recognizing the interdependence of our social, economic, and artistic community, we value collaboration and a collaborative spirit.

Donor Centric: We believe that all types of donors – monetary, volunteer or otherwise – are central to our success.

Education: Because we know that learning changes minds and lives, we value creating knowledge through the teaching of appreciation for music.

Engaging Programming: We strive to create programs that foster a sense of peace, joy, inspiration, and belonging through exciting musical experiences.

Ethical: In all that we do, we strive to be honorable, fair, transparent, and accountable to the community we serve.

Inclusion: We foster an inclusive community that celebrates all the rich contributions of our audience members, staff, performers, and volunteers.

Nurturing the Human Spirit: We believe music is more than entertainment; Music has the power to unite, heal, and transform people.

To further expand on our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion we are developing statements that more fully explain our commitments.

 

Music in the Mountains Racial Equity Statement:

We of Music in the Mountains (MIM) acknowledge the land designated as Western Nevada County as the ancestral homelands of the Nevada City Rancheria Nisenan Tribe. We honor the fundamental value and dignity of all individuals. We pledge to maintain an environment that respects diverse traditions, heritages and experiences. We affirm our commitment to addressing systemic racism and bringing about a more just society through classical music. We do not know what a racially equal society looks like yet and will not always know the right thing to say or do, but we are committed to learning and doing better.

We recognize music’s power to heal and transform communities. We acknowledge that classical music traditions are deeply rooted in European culture and that culture at times has been harmful. While great beauty can be found in this history, extraordinary voices have been neglected and silenced at the hands of racism.

MIM pledges to:

Generate opportunities for BIPOC, women, LGBTQ+, and other traditionally marginalized groups to participate in the decision-making process for the organization by continuing to create and maintain safe, accessible, and inclusive spaces on the decision-making bodies within the organization.

Celebrate and affirm the lives and music of all people and in all its diversity in race, creed, age, color, gender, ability, and sexual orientation through orchestral and choral music.

Offer a diverse world of music, artists & cultures through robust music education programs. Treat all who engage with this organization with respect, dignity, and fairness.

Provide a welcoming space for BIPOC to experience and create music.

Actively seek and hire a diverse universe of performers, conductors, composers, and administrators who can present classical music to inspire all.

Commit to continuing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion work through MIM’s upcoming strategic planning process and beyond.

BIPOC = Black; Indigenous; Person of Color

LGBTQ+ = Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer +

 

Our History

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In the Beginning

A small brave band of music lovers with a big dream gathered in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada to produce a few summer concerts. Four decades later, Music in the Mountains brings the classics to life in new ways, in new places and in new formats.

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1981

Initial organizing meetings take place. City Opera (founded in 1978 by Paul Perry and Terry Brown in San Francisco to present little known works of opera) moves to Nevada County as sponsor. A new Board of Directors is elected with the mission to produce a Summer Festival called Music in the Mountains (MIM).

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1982

The first Music in the Mountains Summer Festival takes place in St. Joseph’s Hall, Grass Valley, in June. The local volunteer Golden Chain Chorale, already under the direction of Paul Perry, is the core of the Festival, and professional musicians are hired from orchestras throughout the United States.

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1985

The corporate name is changed from City Opera to Music in the Mountains, and the Golden Chain Chorale is renamed the MIM Festival Chorale.

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1987

The Allegro Alliance is formed as the hospitality and benefit event auxiliary. The Young Musicians’ Competition debuts, adding educational activities as an integral part of MIM’s mission.

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1994-95

Two “mini-fests”, one in the spring and one in the fall, are added to augment the Summer Festival and the Holiday Choral Concerts.

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2001

A joint project with the Nevada County Fair creates the ability to transform an exhibit hall into The Amaral Family Festival Center concert hall.

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2008

Paul Perry, the founding Artistic Director and Conductor retires, and Ryan Murray is hired as Choral Director.

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2009

Gregory Vajda is hired as Artistic Director and Conductor (2009-13).

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2013

Peter Nowlen is hired as Artistic Advisor.

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2014

Ryan Murray’s role expands to include the title Resident Conductor, in addition to Choral Director.

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2015

Paul Perry, Artistic Director Emeritus dies.

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2016

Peter Nowlen becomes the Artistic Director.

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2017

MIM Youth Orchestra (MIMYO) debuts.

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2019

Peter Nowlen retires and Ryan Murray becomes Artistic Director and Conductor as well as Choral Director. MIM Offices moved to Grass Valley.

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2020

The COVID-19 pandemic forces multiple cancellations and the SummerFest, MIMYO and more go virtual.

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Today

MIM continues to be powered by volunteers: The Board of Directors, the renamed MIM Chorus and MIM Alliance.

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Today

Professional musicians grace our stages indoors in many locations, and outdoors on the Great Lawn at the Fairgrounds, continuing the tradition of delighting audiences in enchanting settings.

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Today

The Education programs have grown to encompass numerous in-school activities: the biennial Young Musicians’ Competition; The Young Composers Project; opportunities to play “Side By Side” with professionals; and the MIM Youth Orchestra.