Make Music New York Returns
Make Music New York, the unique, live, free citywide musical celebration held each summer solstice, returns for its 15th consecutive year on June 21, featuring an exciting, engaging and diverse mix of virtual and in-person concerts, performances, music lessons, jam sessions and other music making events. The daylong musical free-for-all is the flagship event of Make Music Day, which is being staged in over 90 U.S. cities and the entire states of Connecticut, Hawaii, Utah, Vermont and Wisconsin. Make Music New York will further illustrate the power of music to unite, heal and uplift, while also reflecting the Big Apple’s strength, resiliency and vibrancy through the spirit of music. Safety protocols will be enforced including mask-wearing, social distancing and limited capacities and group sizes.
Completely different from a typical music festival, Make Music New York is open to anyone who wants to take part. Make Music New York encourages music makers of all ages, backgrounds and skill levels to take center stage and share their skills and passions through performances on streets, sidewalks, parks, plazas and other public spaces. Due to the ongoing pandemic, this year’s celebration will present safe, modestly-scaled outdoor concerts and performances in addition to an array of virtual offerings.
First launched in France in 1982 as Fête de la Musique, Make Music Day is observed by hundreds of millions of people today in over 1,000 cities across 120 countries. Promoting the natural music maker in all of us, the celebration is an open invitation for everyone to make, share, teach, learn and explore music on the longest day of the year and the first day of summer. Make Music Day is presented in the U.S. by The NAMM Foundation and coordinated by the nonprofit Make Music Alliance.
Highlights of Make Music New York 2021 will include:
• Cloudsplitter is a community directed performance conceived by John P. Hastings for brass ensemble in Isham Park in Inwood that is centered around the mythic persona of radical abolitionist John Brown. Much of the 20 acres of the park will be utilized as the performers spread throughout the space. Over the course of the 40-minute performance, they will come together in various groupings, and finally into a complete ensemble.
• “Wake Up! Wake Up! A Choral Tapestry Honoring Our Earth,” which is presented in partnership with Diana Wege/The Earth Requiem Project, celebrates the Environmental Justice movement through performances by an 18-voice professional choir directed by Malcolm J. Merriweather, readings by Dr. Dorceta E. Taylor, and the visual art works of Wege. It takes place at the Richard Rodgers Amphitheater in historic Harlem’s Marcus Garvey Park.
• Darmstadt’s 17th Annual In C is a special “pop-up” performance along the East River waterfront in which the Brooklyn ensemble brings together stars of the experimental music community for its critically-acclaimed interpretation of Terry Riley’s 1964 masterwork of minimalism.
• Paris on Hudson, which is conceived by Third Street Music School to close out its 2021 Vision Festival, celebrates the incredible musical legacy of French composer, performer, conductor and teacher Nadia Boulanger in this special program of piano performances on Pier I in Riverside Park.
• Rube G is a multidisciplinary program at the East River Park bandshell choreographed by Jody Oberfelder with new music composed by Frank London and his ensemble. The work, which explores how things and people connect and fall apart, is inspired by Rube Goldberg, the object artists whose inventive contraptions and cartoons were a reaction to and product of the machine age.
And the daylong Porch Stomp! festival of American folk music returns to Governor’s Island for its eighth consecutive season on the special date of Saturday, June 26th with performances, workshops and jams from Nolan Park, Colonel’s Row and The Parade Grounds.
Make Music New York will also participate in Make Music Day’s special national projects including Flowerpot Music, Junkophonics, MixMash Studios, #MySongIsYourSong, and This Moment in Time, among others.
All Make Music New York events are free and open to the public. Participants who wish to perform may register at www.makemusicny.org. A full schedule of events will be posted on the website in early June.
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