Classical 91.5

Virtual Concerts

One year ago, the giant fantasy undersea visions of Plasticiens Volants’ French inflatables bobbed and weaved in the crisp fall air over the heads of thousands of people on Rochester’s Parcel 5. London’s Massaoke karaoke singalong of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” echoed off the sides of downtown buildings. 

Big-name comedians, mainly at Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre, have been a major part of the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival though its first eight years. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, that kind of show is not in the plans this year when the event opens next week.

 

Falling in line with other festivals throughout the world, the Gateways Music Festival, postponed from earlier this summer, has confirmed plans to go virtual in November.

The event, which has brought classical musicians of African descent to Rochester since 1995, first partnered with the Eastman School of Music four years ago. Last year’s seven-day event was its largest ever, with 17 public programs, more than 30 community performances and 125 musicians. This year’s Gateways, a five-day event starting on Nov, 9, may be equally ambitious in a different way, when set against the challenge presented by COVID-19.


Editor's note: As soon as I read this essay by conductor Ramona Wis, I wanted to share it with you.  Dr. Wis's ideas offer comfort for everyone, not just musicians.  We can all face an uncertain future with grace and courage.  We're all in this together. ~  Brenda Tremblay

The Conductor as Yogi: From Holding Space to Making Space

By Ramona M. Wis

The first time I heard the phrase “holding space” was from a colleague describing her experience with someone going through a tough time.  “I just held space for her,” she said.  It was a phrase I was not familiar with but soon started seeing everywhere (or maybe it was just “blue car syndrome,” where my increased awareness led to noticing what was always there).

HomeStage: Hanna PK

Jul 9, 2020

The fact that Hanna PK is in Rochester shows the breadth of musical talent here. While known for blues, she's a singer-songwriter in a variety of genres. With a lot of us yearning for a return to a new 'normal', Hanna PK performs “Soyo Arirang," inspired by the old Korean folk tradition called Arirang.


Casey Springstead and Kirsta Rodean teach music, are involved with Solo Fest, perform, and they have two kids! They took time to perform two pieces for you on this edition of HomeStage.

​​Bachfest Malaysia (Malaysia Bach Festival) was founded in 2015 by Artistic Director David Chin to promote the music of J.S. Bach in Malaysia and beyond through performance and education. David is well known to the Rochester music community from his time here leading many performances, focusing on music by Bach, while he was a doctoral student at the Eastman School of Music. 

For two years, the musicians of Bachfest Malaysia had been looking forward to performing at the St. Thomas Church during Bachfest Leipzig 2020 in June. Since the festival planned for this year has now been postponed to 2022, they decided to make a virtual performance recording of a complete cantata – Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland, BWV 62 – one of the three cantatas which they were going to perform at the festival.

https://www.fromthetop.org/

NPR Music producers are dealing challenges that, thanks to technology, can be addressed in creative ways.  Here is what the producers of NPR's From the Top are planning for upcoming months.

Idle hands are the devil's tools. Unless we place a musical instrument in those hands.

The coronavirus pandemic has put virtually every musician in the country out of work. But many have responded by retreating to their basements. Recording a song. Then letting it run loose on the internet, where an innocent browser will uncover something beautiful. Such as the Rochester band Violet Mary, and its stunning version of Led Zeppelin's "The Rain Song."

There have been so many creative responses to keeping people connected to arts and music while we are remaining physically separated. In fact, it's even getting a little difficult to keep track of all the amazing concerts and events happening now online. Here are a few things for you to bookmark to stay connected with online music, arts, and community events. 

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