Community and Culture

As the days get longer and spring flowers turn to the lush green of early summer, my various cultural communities explode with outpourings of music and art. First there are all the wonderful spring concerts presented by the community choruses here in Brooklyn: the Brooklyn Community Chorus, Brooklyn Women’s Chorus, Grace Chorale of Brooklyn, Brooklyn Contemporary…

The Feinberg Brothers

If you ever have a chance to stop by the Old Stone House in Washington Park in Park Slope, Brooklyn, it is worth the visit. This reconstructed house dates from 1699 and played a key role in the American Revolution and the Battle of Brooklyn. If you are lucky enough to be there when The Good Coffee House…

Park Slope Singers

Yet another weekend of excellent choral music from one of Brooklyn’s community choruses. This time it is the Park Slope Singers, under the expert direction of Ira Spaulding. This is my chorus, so I admit my bias right off the bat. We are really, really good. Don’t believe me? Come hear us some time. We…

Brooklyn Community Chorus

It was freezing outside, but after spending this evening at Congregation Beth Elohim in Park Slope listening to the Brooklyn Community Chorus, I left with a warm glow and a song in my heart. I love community choruses, and this one is so big, they threaten to fall off their risers! Co-Artistic Directors Steven Coburn…

Ecstatic Music Festival

Mantra Percussion & Wet Ink & Deborah Lohse and the Shakedown Dance Collective! What a great evening of music and dance, as artsBrookfield hosted a free performance in the fabulous Winter Garden on night two of the Ecstatic Music Festival. I was first introduced to Mantra Percussion through their incredible performance of  Michael Gordon’s “Timber”…

Early Music New York

Last night, I attended A Dutch Christmas at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. It was presented by Early Music New York. I have seen this group perform several times and it is always a wonderful treat. To hear them perform in a beautiful, intimate cathedral chapel really transports me back in time. In…

The Etudes

The concept and simple, minimalist staging of Philip Glass’s Piano Etudes last night made for one of the most elegant and exciting evenings of music I have ever experienced. The row of ten piano benches along the back of the stage — each of them spotlighted and brought forward for each individual pianist, then replaced…

On Behalf of Nature

I have had a hard time making up my mind what to say about tonight’s performance. Interestingly, eekahil’s comment on the BAM blog helps me. I, too, have seen a number of Meredith Monk performances — at BAM and at Danspace Project. I am very familiar with her movement and vocal style, and consider myself…

Black Mountain Songs

Bryce Dessner, Richard Reed Parry and their fellow composers and musicians created a wonderful evening of music tonight, and it seems to me that the creativity and playful freedom of Black Mountain College really came through. I am always blown away by the talent of the Brooklyn Youth Chorus. They tackle such difficult music and…

New York City Labor Chorus

My friend’s mom sings in this chorus and her mother gifted me with a ticket to their performance on Saturday, November 15, at the New York Society for Ethical Culture. The concert honored one of my personal heroes, Pete Seeger. I am a big fan of choruses. Singing with others creates community. Singing with others for…

Exposed: Songs for Unseen Warhol Films

I attended Exposed last night at BAM because I was interested in the Warhol films. I would have happily watched them with no sound. To be honest, I was afraid the music would detract from the films. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the music/film pairings. I thought that having three short films per…

L.A. Dance Project

I first saw L.A. Dance Project at Montclair State University’s ambitious Peak Performances series. What drew me to them at that time was the music by composers I admire, plus the restaging of Merce Cunningham’s dance, Winterbranch. I was delighted by the dancers’ skill and the varied choreography of that evening. When I saw that they were…