Jazz Fusion

Fred Selden

The Santa Monica Mountains’ only community orchestra, the Topanga Symphony will present another free concert at the Topanga Community House on Sunday afternoon March 19 at 3 p.m.

Music Director and Conductor Jerome Kessler since 198, brings together repertoire from Romantic classical composers and a contemporary jazz pianist and composer. This innovative blending of genres brings an unconventional solo instrumentalist to the Topanga Symphony stage, an alto saxophonist.  

The concert will begin with Ludwig van Beethoven’s Leonore Overture #3, Op. 72b. This is the third of four overtures that Beethoven wrote for his only opera Fidelio, that tells the story of how Leonore disguises herself as a prison guard named Fidelio to free her husband, a political prisoner. The heroism and eventual triumph of the story exemplifies the intentions of artists and composers of the time to expose the struggle for liberty and justice in the early 1800s.  This is Beethoven’s most intensely emotional version of the four overtures to Fidelio.

Concertino for Alto Saxophone and Strings by Bill Marx, will feature Fred Selden, Alto Saxophonist. A Los Angeles native, composer for films, television, theater and ballet, Marx collaborated with his famous father, Harpo Marx, on two albums. As a performer, he is in demand as a jazz pianist.

Fred Selden is one of LA’s top studio woodwind players as well as a Grammy nominated composer, arranger and producer.  His musical talents have been featured in countless television and film projects including: March of The Penguins (featured flute soloist), The Last Samurai (featured flute soloist), Pirates Of The CaribbeanTED (1 and 2), Family Guy, American Dad, Star TrekNext Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager and many more.  He has recorded and performed with Don Ellis, Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, Ringo Starr, Bill Holman and Lionel Hampton, to name a few.

Selden is also one of the pioneers of the “Electronic Wind Instrument” (E.W.I.).  He has received a Grammy Nomination for “Best Instrumental Arrangement” for his composition, “The Magic Bus Ate My Donut,” recorded by the Don Ellis Orchestra.  He received a Gold Record (500,000 records sold) for his recording with the Rhythm Heritage Band for their recording of “Theme from S.W.A.T.”

After a short intermission, the Topanga Symphony will return with a classical work commissioned by the Liverpool Philharmonic Society and premiered in 1883 in New York, “Symphony No. 3 in E major, Op. 51 Suite on Russian Themes, Op. 79b,” by Max Bruch. Evoking a variety of heartfelt emotions of his native Rhineland, Bruch begins the piece with a slow, emotional and sentimental interpretation of the spirit of his people. He ends the piece with the uplifting music that could be heard at festivals and carnivals. These themes represent his love for the homeland he cherished, the area of Western Germany along the Rhine River.


A Topanga Symphony concert is always an amazingly wonderful experience.  The dedicated and talented musicians bring to life the music of the masters and contemporary composers in an intimate setting that is unique and inspiring.

Supporting this music treasure in Topanga is easy. Go to the website (topangasymphony.com) and become a “Friend of the Topanga Symphony.” Keeping this orchestra in our community depends on your support. Come to the concert, bring the family, a friend, neighbors and spread the word about the Topanga Symphony.


The Topanga Community Center is located at 1440 N. Topanga Canyon Blvd., Topanga CA 90290. For more information about the Center: topangacommunitycenter.com.


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