The August 14 SummerFest concert offered an embarrassment of riches, from the warmth and allure of Joaquin Turina’s “Escena Andaluza,” to Claude Debussy’s profound yet unsentimental Cello Sonata, to Lei Liang’s extravagantly exciting new “Vis-à-vis” for Pipa and Percussion, to Gustav Mahler’s transcendent Rückert-Lieder song cycle to Alberto Ginestera’s breathtaking String Quartet No. 1.

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Over its eventful seven years, the music series Art of Élan has cultivated a strong relationship with its primary host, the San Diego Museum of Art. Drawing inspiration from the 17th-century painting “St. Francis at Prayer in a Grotto” by Francisco de Zurbarán—the museum’s much celebrated new acquisition—the series’ Tuesday (March 3) program was built on the theme of “Prayers and Songs.”

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