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Upcoming Concerts of the Rossmoor Music Association
 
     
     
The RMA series for 2016-2017
in the Meetinghouse.

     

Reminder: All concerts are at 7:30 p.m. in the Meeting House
Subscription: $60 for all six concerts (That’s a savings of $30.) Tickets will be mailed in late August.
Individual tickets: $15 at the door.

Click HERE for a Music Association Application

     

The Rossmoor Music Association cordially invites residents of other communities to attend. (Enter Rossmoor at the Main Gate on Forsgate Drive and ask for directions to the Meeting House for the concert.)

For further information or directions call Faith Knabe at (609) 395-7853.

by Gene Horan

     

Allison Brewster Franzetti, internationally-acclaimed pianist, to perform at Rossmoor on Friday, April 7, at 7:30 p.m.

Pianist Allison Brewster Franzetti has received international acclaim from critics and audiences alike for her stunning virtuosity and musicality, both as a soloist and chamber musician.


She has performed with many orchestras world-wide including the Denver Symphony, the City of Prague Philharmonic, the Janacek Philharmonic, the Colonial Symphony and the European Women’s Orchestra and has been a Grammy awards nominee multiple times.


Franzetti has made numerous recordings and received a Latin Grammy Nomination for best Tango Album, Tango Bar on Chesky Records.


The program will include Images, Premiere Série by Claude Debussy (1862-1918); Images, Deuxième Série by Claude Debussy; Polonaise-Fantaisie, Op. 61 by Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849); Serenata, Milonoga del Adios, and Tango Final by Carlos Franzetti (b. 1948); and Waltzes by Robert Livingston Aldridge (b. 1954)

 
The concert, sponsored by the Rossmoor Music Association, will be held in the Meeting House at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, April 7. Tickets will be available at the door for non-subscribers at a cost of $15.

By Gene Horan

     
 

A Night on the Town

How is this for a night on the town: Gather some friends and hire a limousine to take you to New York City for dinner and a concert at Carnegie Hall or Lincoln Center. It will be a very nice evening unless, of course, you run into a traffic jam. And you should certainly be home by midnight. How much will it all cost? I’ll let you figure that one out.

Here’s an alternative: Have dinner and some wine in a nearby restaurant, one where the owner doesn’t think your name is Rockefeller. After dessert, go to a concert by outstanding artists in Rossmoor’s beautiful Meeting House. The cost?  Well, it sure won’t break the bank.  No fuss, no bother and you can be home in bed by 10 p.m. Try it; you’ll like it.  

By Gene Horan

 
     

Obtaining Tickets to a Rossmoor Music Association Concert
The "Season" of the Rossmoor Music Association's Concert Year is September through June.

The Application blank for the 2016-2017 season is available as a PDF file by clicking HERE.

Tickets to individual concerts: Can be purchased at the door on the night of the performance For $15/per person.
Annual Subscription tickets (all 6 regularly scheduled events): Can be purchased by filling out an application (available above as a download to print fill out and send in) at $60/per person.

  1. Subscription Forms will be available at the time of the last concert each June.
  2. Or send Subscription Applications with a check made out to the Rossmoor Music Association to Paula Richardson, 673-A Yarborough, Monroe Twp., NJ 08831. This can be done from the time of the last concert in June until the first Fall Concert in September. Click HERE to download the most current Application.
  3. For last minute subscription applications, interested persons can contact Ms. Richardson directly or any of the officers of the Rossmoor Music Association. As of 2016, officers and board members are: Pres Faith Knabe; MaryEllen Mertz, secy; Paula Richardson, treas; Toby DelGiudice, Carol George, Gene Horan, Peggy Mankey and Lucy Poulin.

    Future Concerts

    Friday, December 9: Princeton Pro Musica Chamber Chorus Holiday Concert
    Princeton Pro Musica exists to perform choral masterworks and other works of the choral literature with energy, passion, and uncompromising artistic excellence. The organization includes a chorus of 100 voices, a 20-member chorus, and an orchestra.

    Spring 2017 Friday April 7
    : Allison Brewster Franzetti, piano Pianist Allison Brewster Franzetti has received international acclaim from critics and audiences alike for her stunning virtuosity and musicality, both as a soloist and chamber musician. She was most recently invited to perform at the Grammy Awards Classical Music Tribute to Earl Wild at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles.

    Friday, May 19: Liquid Gold – Celtic Violin and Virtuoso Guitar
    This duo, consisting of Edwin Huizinga on violin and William Coulter on steel-string guitar, will take you on a journey that connects the elements of classical, folk and contemporary musical traditions from around the world -- from a prelude by Bach to an Irish reel to a Spanish love song to a Balkan dance tune.

    Friday, June 2:
    Trio from New Jersey Symphony Orchestra
    Darryl Kubian is a member of the first violin section of the New Jersey Symphony. He will perform with a trio, including two other members of the NJSO yet to be named.
     

A History of the Rossmoor Music Association
The Rossmoor Music Association – RMA, for short -- is one of our very oldest volunteer organizations. It was founded in October, 1971 to   ”coordinate all the (Rossmoor) music groups and programs”. That brought together the Choral Group, the Hand Bell Choir, the Instrumental Group and subsequently, the Music Appreciation Group. In what was our first major coup, Dr. Grace Newman raised enough money to acquire a Steinway grand piano. The price of that wonderful instrument incidentally, was $5000 but another $ 2,500 was needed to restore it to concert condition. It still serves us well; keyboard artists still praise it highly.

Our first concert on October 29 presented pianist Catherine Carver Burton in a program of Mendelssohn, Scarlatti and Chopin. A review in the Rossmoor News suggested that the inclusion of a few “quieter” pieces, ones more “familiar”, might have been advisable for the Rossmoor audience, “whose musical knowledge is somewhat uneven (!!). Our audience’s knowledge might have been better than our critic realized. It has kept us going 37 years.

There were and continue to be highlights. Husband and wife piano artists William and Louise Cheadle, after twice appearing on our programs, decided they liked the place so much that they moved in and resided here for many years.

Dr. Lee Bristol came on the scene in 1973 as featured soloist with a group from the Princeton Gilbert and Sullivan Association. Scion of the distinguished pharmaceutical family bearing his name, and a senior executive in that firm, later president of Westminster College, author, composer, organist, civic and religious teacher, executive secretary of the Episcopal Church’s Music Commission, Bristol was also a marvelous entertainer – a Gilbert & Sullivan enthusiast, but equally at home with Noel Coward and Cole Porter. The Rossmoor News did flips over Bristol. “Effervescent …irrepressible …he served as his own master of ceremonies, played piano, imitated Chevalier singing “Thank heaven for Little Girls” and easily tossed off  “When I was a lad I served a term” from Pinafore.

The next time he appeared here, it was a completely different Lee Bristol. This time he delivered an organ performance of Bach’s Fugue in B minor, along with four preludes he had written based on well-known hymns. Lee died  in August, 1979 at the age of 59. He was a great talent.

In 1978 the distinguished choral director Joseph Flummerfelt brought the Westminster Choir to the Meeting House.

In 1992 we invited Evan Drachman, grandson of the eminent cellist Gregor Piatagorski to appear. He has returned a number of times, always with great musicianship and presentation.


We have been blessed with a succession of dedicated association executives. The late Carlette Winslow and Ruthann Harrison were both from the musical world. They were successful in making the right contacts and passing them on to us. Our present head, Lucy Poulin, is already buiding on that foundation.  

Those contacts help. Pianist Jeffrey Uhlig, for instance. Uhlig is a very fine, versatile pianist, particularly renowned as an accompanist. We had booked him several times, then we learned that he knew a host of musicians in Southern New Jersey and Philadelphia. Now we often turn to Jeffrey to see who might be available to fill a certain slot. Oboist Tom Gallant serves a similar role in the New York area. Both Jeff and Tom are splendid performers but their value to Rossmoor goes well beyond that.

Three years ago Uhlig highly recommended that we book Mark O’Kain, a percussionist who had previously played in the national tour of Les Miserables for seven years. We did so, then we began to wonder whether a percussionist could carry the whole load for a concert. No problem. O’Kain  played xylophone, marimba and made a super impression on our audience. We’ve wanted to get him back for some time and finally made it : he’ll be on our next concert series.

Then there was a time a solo pianist cancelled out on us three days before game time. Help! We turned to Tom Gallant. He said “no problem”. He knew that at that very moment, Pedja Muzijevic, a world renowned piano artist was sitting in the airport in Milwaukee. If he could change his reservations, Tom was sure he’d help us out. We picked up Pedja at the bus station in New Brunswick, brought him here, and he dazzled our audience with his interpretation of Pictures at an Exhibition. No surprise that Pedja is booked here again this year, his third appearance.

We’ve had our share of luck, too. We had arranged for a few members of the New Jersey Symphony to grace our stage, but we were not quite sure what would develop. Six members of the NJSO showed up – three violins, one viola, one guitar, and one cello. They played a lovely program, talked about the rarity of some of their instruments, then violinist Darryl Kubian surprised our audience by whipping out a theremin, one of the earliest electronic musical instruments, and proceeded  to float its eerie sound around the meeting house. That was the closest we’ve ever come to show-and-tell in our series, but it did create tremendous interest. You might remember hearing the spooky sound of the theremin in such movies as Lost Weekend, Spellbound, and The Day the Earth Stood Still.

We were brainstorming one day and wondered why we never had approached Dr. Robert Taub, resident of Princeton and world renowned Beethoven authority. Then we read that he particularly liked to play for audiences, then discuss the music. We invited him to do exactly that for us. We doubted we’d be able to afford him but he was so taken with what RMA was doing he made an offer we could hardly refuse. On September 7, 2007 we were treated to an evening of Scarlatti, Chopin, Schönberg, Liszt, Beethoven along with Dr. Taub’s commentary.

The mother of one member of Philadelphia Brass, a nationally acclaimed musical group, happens to be a resident of Rossmoor. The Brass has appeared here a number of times, always ending up with a late supper at his mom’s place. The group marveled at how well they sound in the Meeting House acoustics, so we invited them to record their next CD here. They accepted our offer and are scheduled to come in in early January.

That’s a first for us, but you never know what the future holds. We’ve been very fortunate. Most of the artists who have appeared here tell us how much they enjoy the enthusiasm of the Rossmoor audience, and would look forward to coming back. That can’t help but pay off for us.

by Bruce Abrams, the Music Association, 1/09

 
 

The Rossmoor Chorus
The Rossmoor Chorus was originally organized in 1969. They were known as the "Melody Lane Singers," directed by William Kennedy. The accompanist was Marion Sand. It was reorganized eight years later as the "Rossmoor Mixed Chorus," directed by Edna Salt, accompanied by Dorothy MacNab. It was in 1983 that we became the Rossmoor Chorus.

Since Kennedy, directors have included Jack MacDonough, 1978; Dorothy Edwin Holder, 1984; Carlette Winslow, 1989; Martha Fletcher, 2002; James McKeever, 2004; Ruthann Harrison, 2007. Gloria Montlack is the present director. Accompanists have included Edwin Holder, Ruth Lipschitz, Martha Fletcher, Louise Cheadle and Lois Smida.

The Chorus sings a broad repertoire of mixed musical offerings of popular, secular, religious and show music presented at different venues within and occasionally outside of Rossmoor. The Rossmoor Chorus, consists of 15-18 members, and practices most Wednesdays at 4PM with time off during July and August. They are always receptive to interested new members.

The Chorus had always been independent and apart from any other organization in Rossmoor. When a need for additional insurance coverage was encountered in late 2007, the Chorus realized it could not afford to remain independent. We were depending principally on the Community Church, with occasional assignments from a variety of local organizations. We needed a sponsor, if we were to continue to exist. On 12/6/2008 the board of the Rossmoor Music Association agreed to fill that role. The Chorus now serves as a separate branch of RMA, maintaining separate income and expenses. The Chorus Board of Directors are: Eileen Parker, President; Lucy Poulin, Secretary and Music Librarian; and Alyce Owens, Publicity.

The purpose of the Rossmoor chorus continues to be to sing for the enjoyment of its members, and to prepare and present programs for such Rossmoor and other functions as may be agreed upon by the members. Through the years the Chorus has performed for: Applegarth Nursing Home, Monroe Village, Rossmoor Women's Guild, Old Guard, E&R Department Christmas program, Jewish Sisterhood, Roman Catholic Society, Interfaith Thanksgiving and Memorial Day Services, Community Church (sing the 3rd Sunday each month), Forsgate Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, and the 911 Memorial Service at Memorial Park (Monroe Township).

 
 
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