A Night of Music Mixology

A Night of Music Mixology, Hosted by the Pacific Symphony

by Brittany Engler | Photos by Pacific Symphony


Nestled in the heart of Santa Ana, resides a hub favored by the locals: 4th Street Market – A coalition of kitchens and mom n’ pop eateries coming together to prepare dishes they’re passionate about. As my husband and I enter the market, it’s refreshing to see the diversity in the kitchen’s clientele, all gathered together to enjoy an array of different foods. We do a lap, surveying all of the different options, and decide to try Ink Waffles. We place our order and then venture into the courtyard. Already packed with eager onlookers, we squeeze our way towards the back of the scene.

As we go inside, we are greeted by the tunes of Bohemian Rhapsody. The band’s interpretation of one of my favorite songs is thrilling. The audience cheers as the song comes to an end, everyone fully enjoying the performance. The moderator calls a few guests to the stage, asks them trivia questions and the winner will then chooses the next song. A woman shouts out the correct answer before the man even finishes speaking … and she gets the answer right. Gleefully, the woman then picks her song, requesting the band plays something from Beethoven. The band, impressed with the guest’s song selection, then offer her free tickets to the symphony for her exemplary taste in music. Giddy with excitement, the woman takes her seat.

Club W Giving the band a bit of a break before their next performance, called upon the stage is the night’s oboe player, Jessica Pearlman Fields. She’s asked a series of questions about her background, which to the crowds’ amazement reveals that she actually majored in neuroscience before learning of her true calling in music. Speaking to a crowd seems to come easily to her as she tells the audience of a time where she made a beast of a reed which lasted 2 – 3 months of playing time, the typical lifespan of a reed being only a few weeks. Miss Fields takes back her seat as she joins the band in playing Beethoven.

The crowd listens intently, ordering a second round of one of the night’s Luscious Libations, all quaintly named with music-themed phrases like the Rock n’ Roll Fantasy, What A Shredder!, Bittersweet Symphony, just to name a few. We review the menu and I decide to try Modern Dudes Without Wigs, a chardonnay grown out of Napa Valley from the Matthiasson Winery. My husband, an avid IPA lover, orders Dead Dudes with Wigs, a Noble Big Wig IPA. We sip our drinks, loosen up and get ready to play the next round of trivia.

We decide to take a stab at the next round and soon ended up laughing at the simple fact that it was likely we wouldn’t know the answers! Alas, the moderator reads off the first question. We cross our fingers. The first question: Name the season the music being played exemplifies. The answer: Springtime (turns out we would have gotten it right!). The game proceeds with questions like: “What are the four groups in an orchestra?”, “What was the Beetles first number 1 hit in the U.S.?”, “What country does singer Rihanna come from?”, etc. This was definitely educational – and eye opening! Turns out we both have a lot to learn about music!

Filling the air is the sweet sound of Pirates of the Caribbean, which immediately has my husband and I turning to each other eager to go home and stay up late watching the “Pirates” movies. The song sends a wave of nostalgia through the crowd. As the evening comes to a close, the band says farewell, and the crowd responds with sincere cheer. As we leave for the night, I can’t help but want to go to the symphony! This really was a great end to a Thursday night in Santa Ana.

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Pacific Symphony musicians are taking over the local pub trivia night with “Music Mixology,” a series of interactive concerts that reinvent the classical experience in a fun and engaging new way. By competing in a music trivia game (no prior-music knowledge necessary), audience members win the chance to select the music performed from a menu of genres ranging from classical, rock, pop, movie music, folk and more. Symphony musicians are equipped to perform these selections live, on the spot, and also have a few surprises in store. Guests are welcome to come and go as they please at this free event, which takes place on Thursday, April 2 from 7-10:30 p.m. on the outdoor patio and beer garden of the newly opened 4th Street Market (201 East 4th Street, Santa Ana, CA 92701). This progressive culinary hub features local artisanal food and beverages from creative chefs. Guests can enjoy themed cocktails by Recess Libations with their music, as well as sweet and savory treats from the many vendors. This event is made possible by The James Irvine Foundation. For more information on the Symphony, call (714) 755-5799 or visit www.PacificSymphony.org.

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