AFCM is managed by volunteers who, in addition to being passionately dedicated to chamber music, have outstanding qualifications. We invite you to get to know them.
Q: What would you tell your younger self about music?
Randy Spalding: “Young man, you have no idea how grateful you will one day be that your parents tortured you with all those piano lessons.” As an old amateur pianist, I love making music with others.
Q: What piece do you find yourself returning to again and again?
RS: Beethoven’s cellos sonatas both excite and calm. I doubt that I’ve taken a car trip in the last 30 years and not listened to these exquisite works at least once along the way.
Q: What CD would we be surprised to find on your shelf?
RS: One of my all-time favorite non-classical groups is Balkan Beat Box. They’re an Israeli group that combine jazz, reggae, cumbia, Moroccan, hip-hop, Eastern European influences.
Q: You’re headed to a deserted island, what would you take?
RS: Bach’s unaccompanied Cello Suites by Yo Yo Ma.
Q: Does music serve a moral purpose in your view?
RS: Music is a magical bridge that easily brings people of differing ideologies and sensibilities together. Music unites us in celebration, sorrow, and joy.
Q: Tell us about what looks particularly appealing this season.
RS: I’m looking very forward to the special two-concert Evening Series performances that will honor Beethoven’s 250th birthday, and the Festival’s week of concerts is especially rich this season.
Q: What other fine art events do you plan to attend this season?
RS: My husband Jim Cook and I are season subscribers to Arizona Theater Company and UA Dance.
Q: What was the last good book you read?
RS: Drapetomania, A Little Life, and The Light Years were recent standouts, but Homegoing wins this prize.
Q: What’s your favorite piece of music no one has heard of?
RS: Nikolai Kapustin is an amazing Russian composer who blends classical music and jazz. I love listening to his Eight Concert Etudes Op. 40 for piano, and occasionally attempt to play a couple of them.
Q: What composer would you play for someone who’s never listened to chamber music?
RS: Beethoven. I’d start easy, perhaps a piano sonata or two. His chamber music is what hooked me in my teens.
Q: What piece of classical music should everyone hear before the age of 21?
RS: Beethoven’s 9th or his Choral Fantasy
Q: Which living composer do you most admire?
RS: Pierre Jalbert, Lowell Liebermann, and Jennifer Higdon are all amazing.
Q: Why do you support AFCM with a yearly donation and a legacy gift?
RS: For almost 40 years, AFCM has enriched my life with incredible music. I not only feel personally responsible to give back, but I want to help ensure AFCM’s survival for generations to come.