Music is its own language, a language of sound. Its roots go as far back as human history can be traced. Knowing the importance of music – to soothe, to celebrate, to stimulate, to encourage, the Ahmansons have not only supported their local symphony but have commissioned works of music for various venues. Their grants range from the Pacific Symphony’s Class Act providing musician-led education in more than 32 Orange County public and private schools and the symphony’s music therapy program Heart Strings to the Parkening International Guitar Competition at Pepperdine University in Malibu, James MacMillan’s Cumnock Tryst in Scotland, and performances in the concert space at their own offices.
The Cumnock Tryst is a program we have supported for more than five years. Most years we try to go ourselves because we learn so much and have such fun!! Hearing the music performed by a range of artists from classical performers who travel the world to the members of local bands and choirs and developmentally disabled persons is one of the great joys of life!! The Tryst happens the last weekend in September each year in Cumnock, Scotland, hometown of internationally famous composer Sir James MacMillan. He and his wife Lynne grew up in Cumnock, a depressed former coal town. And, the Tryst is their big thank you to the town and its people who nurtured them. Put the Tryst on your calendar. Scotland is lovely in the fall!!! -Roberta Ahmanson