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Music by Members - Jan 14, 2016

Date: 
Thursday, January 14, 2016 - 10:00am
Type: 
Music by Members
Location: 
Westminster Presbyterian Church, 2080 Boulevard, West Hartford, CT
Admission: 
$5.00
Chair: 
Sharon Girard
Program: 

The Musical Club of Hartford continues its 125th anniversary season on Thursday, January 14, 2016, at 10:00 am, with a concert featuring the music of several American composers, including Aaron Copland, Cole Porter, and Robert Fuchs. Held in the sanctuary of the Westminster Presbyterian Church, at 2080 Boulevard, West Hartford, CT, admission to the Musical Club concerts is $5 for the general public and free to members of the club. The church is wheelchair accessible from the side entrance nearest to Mountain Road.

The Musical Club of Hartford has a wonderful history of supporting and performing music by American composers. On October 30, 1975, at the Town and County Club, as a celebration of American composers, the members of the Musical Club performed pieces by composers Aaron Copland, Samuel Barber, and John Duke; as well as Wallingford Riegger, Charles Ives, and Edward MacDowell.

In March of that same year, Musical Club member Sharon Girard was a student at Western Connecticut State College when Aaron Copland visited the campus to lecture as part of an Arts Festival focused on the 20th Century.

Aaron Copland at WCSU in 1975, being greeted by Sharon Henderson

On the program for January 14, 2016, to commemorate the 1975 concert, Lillie Gardner will be performing the Piano Variations by Aaron Copland, pieces written in 1930, when he was studying in Paris with Nadia Boulanger.

David Kennedy will be singing three songs by Cole Porter, with Dan Fine on piano and Walter Mayo on bass. Their set will include Porter’s most famous song, Night and Day, written for a 1932 musical called The Gay Divorcée and the song, What is This Thing Called Love, written for the 1929 musical, Wake up and Dream. Mr. Kennedy will also sing Where is the Life that Late I Led? from Cole Porter’s most popular musical, Kiss me Kate, which won the first Tony award ever presented for Best Musical in 1949.

Sharon Girard will be performing a set of winter-themed jazz pieces by various American composers, with Larry Girard on trumpet, Peter Greenfogle on tenor saxophone, and Kirk Woodard on drums.

To round out the program, Peg Walker and Ginny Allen will be performing five of the twelve Duette for Violine and Viola by Robert Fuchs, an Austrian composer known best for his Serenades for piano and a close friend of Johannes Brahms.

Membership in this marvelous non-profit all-volunteer organization is open to all those who share a love of music, including composers, performers and listeners. For more information call 860-561-1588.

 

More about the musicians

Pianist Lillie Gardner has performed both solo and chamber music throughout the Midwest, New York City, and Europe. Most recently, she performed solo recitals at von der Mehden Recital Hall at the University of Connecticut and the Blackbox Theater in New York City, and was selected Alternate in the University of Connecticut’s 2015 Aria and Concerto Competition. In 2013 she performed in Oviedo and Gijón, Spain as a participant in the Gijón International Piano Festival, and in 2011 she received an Honorable Mention for her performance in the New York State Music Teachers Association’s Empire Piano Competition.

Lillie received her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in Piano Performance at New York University as a student of Miyoko Nakaya Lotto and Dr. Jose Ramon Mendez. Currently, she is pursuing her Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Connecticut under the tutelage of pianist Irma Vallecillo, and she is a grateful recipient of the Musical Club of Hartford’s Evelyn Bonar Storrs Piano Scholarship.

Ginny Allen, violinist, graduated from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor of Music degree. She then went on to get a Master’s degree in Special Education, teaching the hearing impaired. After spending some years raising a family, she went back to school and became a registered nurse. She has recently retired from twenty years in a nursing career.

Ginny is presently Concertmaster of the Connecticut Valley Symphony Orchestra and is a performing member of The Musical Club of Hartford. Over the years, she has taught violin and viola students in her home.

Peg Walker, violin and viola, has been playing chamber music for most of her life.  She attended Miami University in Ohio and the University of Michigan for her undergraduate work, and received her MFA in Applied Violin and Musicology from Western Michigan University.  She has studied with Margaret Randall, Julius Stulberg, Gerald Fischbach, and Orhan Ahiskal.  A founding member of the Con Brio Ensemble, which includes her cellist husband, Herb, Peg has performed chamber music regularly in the greater Hartford area for the past 25 years.  In addition to her Musical Club Activities, Peg is an enthusiastic volunteer at the University of Hartford’s Presidents’ College.
Walter Mayo has played bass since high school, and with jazz, dance, folk and Dixieland groups in college and beyond. He has studied piano and harmonic theory at the Hartford Conservatory with Walter Gwardyak, and plays with informal groups locally. He and his wife Ann are past co-Presidents of the Musical Club of Hartford.

Dan Fine, a Hartford native who grew up in Mark Twain's neighborhood, graduated from Hartford Public High School, received a B.A. from the University of Connecticut with a minor in music and an MBA from Boston College.  He studied piano with Ray Cassarino and Leonard Sieber. Dan has played professionally since the age of 14 and played with the Al Jarvis and Paul Landerman Orchestras locally. Dan has also played saxophone in the Simsbury Community Band for 28 years.
Sharon B. Girard has loved music since she was a child. She studied dance, piano and voice and went on to college to earn a Bachelor of Science Degree from Western CT State College and a Master of Music Education Degree from the Hartt School, University of Hartford. Sharon is a member of the Music Teachers National Association and is a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music. Sharon has taught piano for the last 40 years in her private studio, as well as in the public schools. She is a member of Musical Club’s Vocal Ensemble and a member of the St. Gregory Choir of Trinity Episcopal Church in Tariffville. Most Monday evenings you can find Sharon and Larry at table #54 at Black Eyed Sally’s listening to jazz.

Lawrence E. "Larry" Girard, Jr. started playing brass instruments at age 7 when he joined a drum and bugle corps managed by his father. When he finished high school, Larry stopped playing for 20 years but on the advice of his wife, Sharon, Girard, never sold his trumpet.  He began playing again in 1995.  He has performed with the Skyliners Alumni Drum and Bugle Corps, the Contemporary Choir at St. Mary Church in Windsor Locks, the Hartt School's Jackie Mclean Institute of Jazz Big Band and at various jazz jam sessions in the Greater Hartford area.  Currently, Larry performs with the South Windsor Community Band and is a volunteer with the Windsor Locks Middle School instrumental programs.  He is owner and president of CBA Lighting and Controls Inc., and airfield lighting supplier in Windsor Locks.

David Kennedy started singing under a grape arbor somewhere at the age of five and can't remember where he learned the songs. Ultimately he became a mechanical engineer with an MBA and wandered from job to job always singing somewhere except for a four-year stint in the US Navy. He has currently exceeded 25 years as a member of CONCORA (Connecticut Choral Artists) and over the years has had major roles in 30 musical and operatic productions.

Peter Greenfogel graduated from the Jackie McLean Institute of Jazz with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies. He has studied with Jackie McLean along with Nat Reeves, Steve Davis, Chris Casey and many others. He performs with his own group throughout Connecticut as well as in New York and New Jersey. Peter also performs with Simply Swing throughout the State of Connecticut. He teaches at the Artists’ Collective in Hartford and as an assistant at the Hartt School Jackie McLean Institute of Jazz.