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Concert funds health center

Three area churches (Calvary Lutheran, St. James/St. Leo Catholic Community and St. Peter’s Episcopal) joined together with the Hutchins Consort to sponsor a benefit concert for Esperanza (Hope) Health Center to fund urgently needed health services for children in Tijuana orphanages.

Three hundred people attended the April 17 concert at Calvary Lutheran Church in Solana Beach. Ticket sales and donations from members gave Esperanza the financial resources it needs to continue its children’s program for another year.

“And with this is the commitment of Hutchins Consort and the sponsoring churches to replicate the concert on a sustaining basis,” said Drew Cady, managing director of the Consort.

Esperanza serves a community of 120,000 people, “The poorest of the poor,” according to Cady. The staff, primarily female doctors and nurses, decided to expand care to children, many of whom have been abused and abandoned, and others who are seriously disabled and without medication.

The Consort musicians performed Villa Lobos’ “Bachianas Brasileiras No.5"; Liszt’s “Hungarian Rhapsody”; a sensuous Fandango after Soler by resident composer, Frederick Charlton; and Gershwin’s “Summertime,” followed by a playful vocal rendition of “Ghost Riders in the Sky.”

The Beatles’, “All You Need Is Love” served as a finale sing-along to acknowledge the dedication and hard work of the Esperanza medical staff.

Much of the magic (and love) was provided by the gifted soprano Lauren Smith, who breathed a whole lot of life into the night with her commanding voice and sweet demeanor, according to Cady.