Davisville, June 26, 2023: Don Roth, who helped bring major artists to Davis, calls it a career

If you’ve enjoyed a performance at the Mondavi — maybe the Beethoven “Sonatathon,” Bo Diddley concert or the Maria Callas hologram with the Sacramento Philharmonic — today’s guest had something to do with that. This August, after 17 years, Don Roth is retiring as executive director of the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts at UC Davis. Today on Davisville we talk about choosing performers, the influence of tech, how the Mondavi spent the pandemic, and why pianist Stewart Goodyear’s “Sonatathon” was among Roth's favorite moments.

I asked about audiences returning after Covid. “People need to gather. That’s [our nature]. … Gathering together, being in the same room with an artist or a speaker and sharing a collective experience is just something that however good your virtual equipment is at home, that doesn’t replace it,” Roth said. “And I hear that all the time from people who have come back.”

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