Music nurtures creativity and scientific thinking
Donation helps FanFaire Foundation NURTURE CREATIVITY


Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club and FanFaire Foundation Join Forces in “A Very Special Evening of JAZZ”

March 2, 2013 benefit event features dinner created by RSF Golf Club Chef Brian Freerksen and music by prominent San Diego jazz musicians


CLICK to read MEDIA articles and view PHOTOS in pop-up window
Rancho Santa Fe Review (print edition – p16) – March 7, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Review (print edition – p17) – March 7, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Review (online edition)- March 6, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Review (print edition – pB13) – February 28, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Review (print edition – p11) – February 21, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Review (online edition) – February 19, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Review (print edition – p14) – February 14, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Review (print edition – p7) – February 14, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Review (online edition) – February 6, 2013

Note: ONLINE EDITIONS of the Rancho Santa Fe Review are also available; some of above news stories also appeared in the publisher’s Carmel Valley and Solana Beach editions.

Union Tribune San Diego – February 20, 2013

Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club President Helen DiZio recently announced that the Garden Club has joined forces with FanFaire Foundation, a San Diego-based nonprofit organization, in presenting “A Very Special Evening of Jazz.” The dinner-and-show event will be held on Saturday March 2, 2013 at 6:00 pm at the Garden Club located at 17025 Avenida de Acacias in Rancho Santa Fe. Tickets to the event cost $75 per person, part of the proceeds to benefit FanFaire Foundation which has put together the evening’s musical program, its first foray into jazz and its third collaboration with the Garden Club.

The 3-hour event includes a 3-course dinner specially created for the occasion by Rancho Santa Fe Golf Club Chef Brian Freerksen, and cocktails served from a no host bar throughout the evening. The show will feature Latin jazz, jazz standards, and selections from the great American songbook performed by some of San Diego’s finest jazz musicians, including Bill Caballero and his Latin Quintet–The Quinteto Caballero (trumpet, flugel horn, guitar, bass, and conga and timbales drums ); a trio comprised of virtuoso jazz pianist Mikan Zlatkovich, flutist Kirk Johnson, and bassist Bill Andrews; and The Pizarro Brothers (piano and keyboard).

FanFaire Foundation–where science and music intersect, is a young, all-volunteer nonprofit organization whose mission is to nurture through music the kind of creativity badly needed in our highly competitive science-based society. Its programs include concerts, lectures, and science festival demonstrations that supplement music and science education at K-12 and higher levels, equip young minds for the unique challenges of our technology-based economy, and enkindle public interest in music and science. While music is obviously not rocket science, history has shown that it can make rocket science possible! Indeed, the biographies of great scientists reveal that music is the common thread that ran through the lives of the true creative geniuses who made the landmark discoveries of our time, Albert Einstein being the foremost exemplar.

Usually free and open to the public, FanFaire Foundation’s programs are held in informal learning environments in multicultural communities throughout San Diego County, often in partnership with public libraries, museums, festivals and other institutions that advance the cause of education. Warmly received by the community when it launched in late 2011, its “KIDS Playing For KIDS” program has become its most popular. The program nurtures musically gifted children (ages 6 to 17) who also love science and math in the hope that they can serve as role models for other children. It provides them with solo and ensemble performance opportunities at various venues throughout the year, and alongside professional artists whenever possible, thus enabling them to creatively express and share their love of music with children of all ages while building their self-confidence as performers. In addition, they are encouraged to pursue excellence in their studies and value community service.

The Foundation has presented more than thirty “KIDS” concerts since the program launched. The events are always a big hit with audiences who come away from the concerts awed by the KIDS’ amazing talent and convinced of the program’s value to the community. The program continues to gain a lot of headway as more and more parents ask: how can my child join? In November 2012, the program released its first CD album. Entitled “KIDS Playing For KIDS: Classical N Jazz” the professionally recorded and mastered CD contains 13 tracks of music for piano, as well as for cello and violin, by composers ranging from Bach to Badelt, Chopin to Joplin. played by ten of the program’s thirty young artists. It also includes an original composition by the program’s Pizarro Brothers who at 13 and 16 are already making their mark in San Diego’s jazz scene. They will be showcased alongside their more seasoned “elders” at the Garden Club’s “Very Special Evening of Jazz” which promises to be musically a most exhilarating and enjoyable way to bid Winter farewell and to welcome Spring!

A Very Special Evening of Jazz at Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club
When: Saturday March 2, 2013 at 6:00 p,m.
Where: Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club
17025 Avenida de Acacias Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067

Ticket: $75.00
Available online at or call (858) 756-1554
Checks must be postmarked by February 23 and made payable to:
RSF Garden Club PO Box 483 Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067

Musical program info:


Latin Jazz, Jazz Standards and The Great American Songbook

– The Quinteto Caballero (Latin Quintet led by Bill Caballero – trumpet and flugel horn, Ignacio Arrango-guitar, Omar Lopez-bass, Luis Cuenca-timbales, Jacob Hands-conga)
– Mikan Zlatkovich -piano, Kirk Johnson-flute, Bill Andrews-bass
– The Pizarro Brothers (Dominic-piano, Angelo-keyboard)

About the ARTISTS:

The Quinteto Caballero
Led by trumpeter Bill Caballero, The Quinteto Caballero has been active in the San Diego jazz scene since the late 1990’s. The ensemble explores Latin and Jazz in their various styles and rhythms, playing the music of Tito Puente to Sade to the rhythms of Bossa nova, bolero, mambo, cha-cha, and samba.

As a youngster Bill Caballero was exposed to the music of Perez Prado and Luis Alcaraz. He became really hooked to the Latin style in the 1980s when he joined a Latin Jazz ensemble while in college in Seattle, WA where he received his degree in Jazz performance from Cornish School of the Arts. The influences of his musical life include Miles Davis, Claudio Roditti, Tito Puente, and Caetano Veloso. Bill and his musicians, who are among the best Latin players in town, transport audiences to the Latin countries that inspire them–from Cuba to Brazil to Puerto Rico and beyond. With the steady percussive rhythms of the congas and timbales which take on an almost trance-like quality of their own, the tumbao rhythm of the bass and the contemporary voicing of the guitar, the mellow voice of the flugelhorn or the brilliant calls of the trumpet, listeners can almost hear, see, and smell the sugar cane as it is chopped down for market in a tropical countryside far, far away.

Mikan Zlatkovich
An accomplished pianist with over a decade of professional experience playing both in Europe and the U.S., Mikan has shared the stage with jazz notables like Tony Scott, Clifford Jordan, Chet Baker, Ernie Wilkins, Ralph Pendland, Red Holloway and Charles McPherson. On piano or synthesizer, Mikan’s strong improvisational skills have thrilled and touched live audiences. He has composed and arranged for sessions and performances. Mikan’s experience extends to orchestras, bands and groups in concert. With radio and television credits and local jazz club appearances, he has developed an audience who knows and loves great jazz.

Born in Pristina, Serbia, he followed his dreams and jazz to New York City in the early 90′s. Listening to American radio in Eastern Europe as a young child, his father, an amateur guitarist, would expose him to the music of all the jazz greats and he was fascinated by the sound. They would capture this music on a reel to reel and he would transcribe by ear the nuances, rhythms and solos of artists such as Oscar Peterson, Wes Montgomery and McCoy Tyner. He would learn to speak “jazz” through their music until he found his own voice.

In the early 90′s, Mikan followed jazz to New York City where he spent years honing his skills. Since relocating to the West coast in 1997, Mikan has been a tireless force in the San Diego jazz scene, complementing the talents of fellow resident jazz greats such as Daniel Jackson, Charles McPherson, Marshall Hawkins, Peter Sprague, Gilbert Castellanos, and Bob Magnusson, as well as fronting his own jazz trio. Expressive and inventive, he has also become the accompanist of choice for jazz vocalists.

Mikan brings joy through his music to all types of people in many different settings, from concert hall to small club to street corner. The result is a oneness that comes from bringing people into the moment with his music and talent. No two moments are the same: his music is always evolving, being a constant search and discovery of what’s possible in each new moment with an open mind, ears and heart. He is not a teacher in the traditional sense; he teaches by doing, making the student observe and participate in making his own decisions, thus finding his own path to freedom. A great jazz ambassador, Mikan is available for performances in any and all configurations, either with his own trio/quartet or with local players. He can present a broad repertoire that includes songs from the Great American Songbook, jazz and blues standards, classic ballads, pop songs, rhythm and blues, bossa nova and samba classics, as well as his own original compositions.

To listen to sample tracks and for more information, visit

Kirk Johnson
Kirk began his lifelong love of the flute while listening to the Chicago Symphony orchestra perform Debussy’s Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune The radio stations and African-American churches of Chicago were a strong influence in his personal and musical development, immersing him in gospel, blues and jazz. In addition to being a wellspring of excitement and inspiration for him, Kirk recalls jazz as being “unforgettably moving and immensely powerful.”

Kirk studied at Western Michigan University and California Institute of the Arts. He has studied jazz flute with downbeat poll winner James Newton, Brazilian music with Berklee School of Music flutist Fernando Brandao, and jazz with pianist Tamir Hendelman. He received a National Endowment for the Arts Grant to study at the summer school of the Paris Conservatory in Nice, France. That summer he studied classical music with Geoffrey Gilbert, William Bennett and Robert Stallman.

Kirk was flutist with the National Orchestra of Malta for three seasons where he also performed with the opera orchestra. As a music educator Kirk has taught at the American International Schools abroad and the University of Colorado International College.

Over a period of ten years, Kirk traveled extensively in Europe, Brazil, the Middle East, and four Asian countries, performing and teaching with jazz ensembles and orchestras.

Bill Andrews

Bassist Bill Andrews has performed in a variety of musical landscapes ranging from Jazz to Classical. Among the famous artists he has accompanied include Frankie Lane , Keely Smith, Sam Butera, Laurindo Almeda, Steve Allen, Anita O’day, Eddie Harris, Tal Farlow, Art Van Dame, Eddie Daniles, Afro Rumba, Charles McPherson, Blue Mitchell, Papa John Creech, Mark Murphy, Drifters, Rich Little, Little Anthony, The Platters, Captain & Tenille, and The Smothers Brothers. His stage appearances include performances with the San Diego Symphony and Symphony Summer Pops, shows at the Old Globe Theatre and the La Jolla Playhouse as well as at various R&B and Rock Concerts.


The Pizarro Brothers
Home-schooled and raised with an appreciation and love for music, brothers Dominic and Angelo Pizarro began studying classical music at the age of three and a half in San Diego. Fired up with a zest for music with the encouragement and support of both their mother and grandfather, the boys later developed an avid interest in jazz and pop, inspired by such music greats as Oscar Peterson, Dave Brubeck, Harry Conick Jr., Elton John, George Gershwin, Rogers & Hammerstein, Billy Taylor, Daniel Jackson, Duke Ellington, Earl Hines, Billy Strayhorn, Frank Sinatra, Horace Silver, Ray Charles, and many more.

The Pizarro Brothers started performing duets on one piano in 2003 when Dominic was seven years old and Angelo four. They began busking and performing around San Diego at community festivals, the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica, in nursing homes and local cafes. They have been featured on CBS Channel 8 with Larry Himmel, Fox News, KUSI and The CW. They have performed at Anthology, Make A Wish Foundation, The U.S. Grant, The Ronald McDonald House Charities, The Rock Church, Petco Black Tie Gala, San Diego Sockers, Manchester Hyatt, Daniel Jackson Week at Croce’s, Fashion Valley Mall, Mission Valley Mall, Horton Plaza, Borders, Seaport Village, Temple Beth Israel, Christmas on the Prado, the Italian Festa and the Sicilian Festa. They also perform at weddings, fundraisers, schools, various retirement communities, and special events. Their most memorable experience was being asked to perform the Opening Act for Marvin Hamlisch on July 2, 2010.

Today, Dominic–16 years old and a freshman majoring in Aerospace Engineering at Cal State Long Beach, and 13-year old Angelo perform weekly at the Ronald McDonald House. They love sharing their passion for music, captivating audiences everywhere with their stylish two-piano renditions of their own arrangements and improvisations of great musical pieces as well as their own compositions which they perform with remarkable synchronicity and musicianship. The brothers are active founding members of FanFaire Foundation’s KIDS Playing For KIDS program.


Leave a comment