History

76 YEARS AND COUNTING

In 1937 the Educational Music Club of Redding wanted to sponsor professional artists to present concerts in Redding. After attending a regional meeting with a Columbia Concert Corporation representative, Mrs. R.A. Saeltzer, president of the music club, headed up the effort to organize the Shasta County Cooperative Concert Association on January 21, 1938. Officers elected on January 22, 1938 included Mrs. Saeltzer, president; W.H. Fink, J.R. Shannon, David Marr and Mrs. James Holt, vice-presidents; Mrs. Ramona Charles, secretary ; E.A. Kirk, assistant secretary; W.D. Simons, treasurer; and Miss Wilhelmina Nock, membership chairman, assisted by Mrs. T.W. Parkin, Mrs. Tiny Carter and Mrs. G.E. Oaks. The Board of Directors included Mrs. William Gardner, Mrs. Ralph Bryan, Mrs. Carmen Schaumberg, Miss Hazel Cochran, Mrs. F.R. Drinkall, Mrs. Gus Larson, T.W. Parkin, Paul Bodenhamer, Frank Wilkinson, Mrs. George DeSoto, Jackson Pria and Mrs. Fred Godboldt of Red Bluff. The organization, which later became the Shasta County Community Concert Association, grew from twenty-one charter members to 330 members during the March 1938 membership drive. With a first year $800 budget, the association presented three concerts during the 1938-39 season.

The Columbia Concert Corporation’s membership plan provided assured audiences for artists, while the local association was guaranteed selections from a pool of high-quality performers and protected from financial risk. Local membership grew steadily until it reached the 1200 person capacity of the Shasta High School Auditorium (now known as the David R. Marr Auditorium) in the 1950-51 season which saw four concerts on a $3,750 budget.

In 1960 “County” was dropped from the association’s name to reflect increased membership from Trinity County. As the association developed, its growth became limited by the seating capacity of the Shasta (later Nova) High Auditorium. This affected both the number of area music lovers who could share the enjoyment of the concerts and the scope of the season programs financed from membership dues. The limitations of the auditorium’s stage and dressing room facilities also became obvious as larger attractions were procured. These problems were eliminated when the Redding Civic Auditorium, with a seating capacity of 2000, opened in September 1970. The 1970-71 budget of $11,000 provided three concerts to the membership. The SCCA membership jumped to over 1600 in the initial season there, and the first of eight successive sellouts was achieved in 1979-80. The excellent stage facilities permitted handling even the most complex productions, and the comfort and convenience of visiting artists was greatly increased by the new dressing room arrangements.

In the late 90’s Columbia Artists sold the Community Concerts organization to Trawick Artists Company. For the 2000-2001 season Trawick provided the artists’ roster from which SCCA selected five concerts on a $46,250 budget. After Community Concerts, Ltd went bankrupt in 2003, SCCA, as an independent California non-profit organization, became affiliated with Live On Stage. The former employees of Community Concerts Ltd. approached Matt Davenport of Matt Davenport Productions, who had presented many memorable shows for the series, about creating a new performing arts service organization to continue serving the Community Concert Associations across the United States. Live On Stage, Ltd. presented their first roster of artists for the 2004-2005 season.

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