Music for Well-Being - Rancho La Puerta
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Music for Well-Being

Week of September 7, 2024

Sound and music impact the human experience in powerful ways: a song that makes you cry, a rhythm that makes you dance, or a single drone that clears your active mind. This week, Monique Mead explores the art and science behind these powerful sonic experiences and shares techniques to leverage sound and music for your own well-being.

  • Candlelight Sound Healing
  • Two Concerts in Oaktree Pavilion
  • Food and Musical Experience at La Cocina que Canta’s Thursday’s Chef’s Table Dinner with Jocelyn Ramirez
  • Interactive music workshop: “Sonic Seduction: seducing the mind to stillness through sound.”


A passionate ambassador of classical music, violinist Monique Mead enjoys a rich career as a performer, educator, and innovator. Inspired and mentored by Leonard Bernstein, Monique has devoted her performing career to nurturing new audiences and curating extraordinary musical experiences. Her programs with major orchestras and festivals in the United States and Europe have drawn international acclaim for their popular appeal and innovative approach. Interweaving live music with education and audience engagement at the highest level, her programs have reached millions through television appearances, a six-year radio series with the Munich Radio Orchestra, and over 20 years of concerts with the Cologne Philharmonic, Munich Symphony, Düsseldorf Symphony, Berlin Radio Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, San Diego Symphony, and the Mainly Mozart Festival. Since 2012 Monique has served as Director of Music Entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon University, where she trains musicians in community engagement, peak performance, and professionalism as she helps them forge new paths as professional musicians. Monique performs on violin made in 1860 by J.B. Vuillaume which was gifted to her at age 19. She enjoys hiking, yoga, homegrown cuisine, and performing with her talented teens, Isabel and Tino.


Touted as a “gifted guitarist” by the New York Times, 2-time Grammy-nominated artist Mak Grgić [GER-gich] is a star on the worldwide stage. From the ethnic music of his native Balkans to extreme avant-garde and microtonal music, his roles as soloist, collaborator, and Grammy-nominated recording artist are fueled by curiosity, imagination, and boundless energy. As a testament to his versatility and wide-ranging appeal, in 2018 Mak was invited by legendary singer-songwriter k.d. lang to perform as the opening act for the North American leg of her Ingénue Redux Tour. Recent engagements include performances and residencies at the Musikverein and the Konzerthaus in Vienna, the Konzerthuset in Stockholm, several venues in Portugal, Teatro Cervantes de Bejar in Castilla-Leon/Spain, the Sarajevo Music Academy, several venues in Slovenia, the Paris Guitar Foundation, Zurich University of the Arts, Taipei National Theater, Shanghai Grand Theater, and the Hong Kong International Guitar Festival. Mak’s latest recordings, “Balkanisms” for Naxos Music plus “MAKrotonal” and Grammy®- nominated “Mak|Bach” for MicroFest Records, explore a vast repertoire spanning ethnic music, microtonal, new music and early music on re-fretted instruments, such as a “zig-zag fretted Bach prototype guitar” that allows him to create a “well- tempered guitar” for “Mak|Bach.” Born in Ljubljana, Slovenia, in 1987, Mak studied guitar in Zagreb with the revered Ante Cagalj at the Elly Basic Music Academy.  He completed a bachelor’s degree with Alvaro Pierri at the University for Music and Performing Arts in Vienna and in the fall of 2017, he began the Artist Diploma program at USC, the first guitarist in the university’s history to be admitted to this elite program. Mak currently holds a full-time teaching position at University of South Carolina, and is a founder and CEO of Notey, a startup building a mobile music education game.