May 29, 2014

Celebrating with a Commission

Abdelmonem and Marianne Afifi have several important things to commemorate this year. It’s been 40 years since the two met in Vienna, and they are both celebrating significant birthdays: Marianne is turning 60 and Afifi—as everyone calls him—is turning 75.

What better way to celebrate than to commission a new chamber piece!

Dr. Afifi is the Dean Emeritus of UCLA’s School of Public Health and is a Professor of Biostatistics and Biomathematics. Marianne is the Associate Dean of the Oviatt Library at CSU Northridge. Long-time music lovers and devoted concert-goers, they discovered Pacific Serenades through their friends (and ours), Bernice & Wendell Jeffrey, who have commissioned ten works for us since 2004. The Afifis have been subscribers and donors since our 2007 season, and have by now heard the premieres of some 28 Pacific Serenades commissions. The Afifis said: “We are so excited to commission Jeff Parola’s work. We have both long contemplated a commission and it is especially meaningful for us to do so in this year of celebrations.”