Good evening, and welcome to
the Donahue Family Academic Arts Center at Middlesex Community College. It is really a pleasure
to have you here tonight. I’m Jim Baker,
the President of the college. And I am so proud to have this
building in our portfolio because it is such a wonderful place for
our students and our faculty to learn. I want to take a minute just to
recognize Nancy Donahue who’s here tonight, who is really
our major sponsor [INAUDIBLE]>>[APPLAUSE]>>Also with us tonight is trustee Linda Banks-Santilli and her family. It’s great to have you
here in supporting us. And I think we have Bridget Byrne, our student trustee here as well so
it’s really nice that we have support from our trustees, our community members, and
the faculty and staff at the college. So the Donahue Family Center is
primarily an academic building, and it’s really built for
teaching and learning. If you take time to tour around,
you’ll see that the spaces are designed not just for performance, but
really for teaching and learning. This is a classroom, and during the week,
there are classes in here all day. And we have students in here learning, and then we can do special events
like this for performance. So I encourage you to tour the building,
take a look around. See the theater downstairs,
the dance studio which is just behind us. So we’re really still trying to
shake down this complex building. It really has a lot of state of
the art technology in here, and we’re learning how to use it and
use its capabilities. And we want to spend some time
getting this all working smoothly for our students, because that’s our
primary purpose at the college, is making things work for our students. Once we get it all up and working, and it’s really more that we’ve learned
how to work it to its fullest extent. We’ll start hosting more and
different types of events in the building, and becoming an even better
partner in our community here. So Lowell really is an arts and
cultural destination. In this performance space,
we’ll just add to the inventory here. And really help us encourage, and
support the arts within the community. Tonight we’re really proud to be
honoring the city of Lowell, and really doing that with
original compositions and performances by our faculty,
students, and guests. We are delighted to be hosting you here
tonight for this inaugural concert. And it’s great to see the people
who appreciate music from across both the local community and
surrounding communities, even some of our friends from
Bedford have come up today. Disproving the rumor that people from
Bedford never come to Lowell at night.>>[LAUGH]
>>So, it’s gonna be quite a show. I’m sure you’ll enjoy it,
again enjoy this setting. And I wanna thank you all for your continued support for
Middlesex Community College. And now it’s really my great pleasure
to introduce Carmen Rodriguez Peralta, the chair of the music program. And she’ll tell you more about
the concert and the performances tonight. Thank you very much.>>[APPLAUSE]>>I’d like to join as a neighbor in welcoming all of you
to our wonderful new recital hall. We thought it would be appropriate for this inaugural concert to focus on music
that relates to Lowell in some ways. So we’re going to be opening with two
charming songs by George Chadwick who’s born in Lowell in 1854. Also on the program, with music
from Latin America, Cambodia, and Africa reflecting the influence of
those cultures here in the city. We’re very excited to have
four world premieres of pieces written by MCC Music Faculty. And each is inspired by
Lowell in a different way. There will also be some choral music
with us, MCC students and alumni, and the entire program will conclude
with a rousing performance of African Fellowship Choir from
Elliot Church here in Lowell. So again welcome, enjoy the concert.>>[APPLAUSE] [MUSIC] [SOUND] [APPLAUSE] [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE] [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE]>>[APPLAUSE] [SOUND]>>The first song we’re going to play is called, [FOREIGN] which means,
The Great Khmer legacy. Is a singer and a flute player. And Simon Kaal to play the [INAUDIBLE]. [MUSIC] [APPLAUSE]>>The next song is called
Aub Au Sator which is happy ending. [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE]>>Thank you.>>[APPLAUSE] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [APPLAUSE] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [APPLAUSE]>>[APPLAUSE]>>The composer to say a few words.>>Thank you. It is a great honor to write a piece for the inaugural concert at the center. My piece is actually
pretty straightforward. It’s about the great joy and love of people, of mankind in general. And specifically to the realms of law and about the great value that mankind has and how there’s so
much eclecticism in the city, all of these different kinds of people. And this is really about
a celebration of the people.>>[APPLAUSE] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [APPLAUSE]>>We have so many new buttons,
we really don’t know what it do.>>[LAUGH] [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE] [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE]>>Hi, I’m Pam Marshall, the composer
of the first song of this set. I want to think Paul Marion, who couldn’t
be here today, for this wonderful poem. Green Windows is part of a collection
of poems he’s written about the city of Lowell. And this one in particular seemed to
be really full of Lowell history. And it seemed like the perfect
one to choose for this program. It starts out with wordplay,
and then it gradually evolves into this feeling of
nostalgia being contrasted all the time with the idea of industry and
progress. I think the key elements of the poem
are the hand prints on the window. The fistful of grass that
the ex-farmer takes as he’s leaving to go into the factory. And then finally at the end,
the hand prints come back again. And I don’t know,
it’s just beautiful nostalgia, but not, Not negative about progress either,
because there’s trade-offs on both sides. [MUSIC] [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE]>>Hi, I’m Aaron Rosenberg and the next song, Morning Song, is the fourth
song I’ve written with lyricist, Robert Kozinski, who’s right over there. We’ve been collaborating on a group
of songs of popular music idioms. Unabashedly popular music idioms,
exploiting them.>>[LAUGH]
>>No intention of reinventing the wheel, but just having a really good time. That’s my idea anyway. Morning Song is inspired by an article
titled, The Spirit of Discontent. That appeared in the Lowell Offering,
the monthly periodical of writing by the Lowell mill girl
that ran from 1840 to 1845. So in this article,
The Spirit of Discontent, mill girl, Ellen Collins, voices her discontent
with the factory life in Lowell. She kinds for the role life she
left behind in the contrary. And part of the complaint can be actually
be found on a plat on the wall of the mill girl immigrant museum or
exhibit in boardinghouse park in that. I objects to the constant of everything, we cannot have time to each drink or
sleep. We have only 30 minutes or at most
three-quarter of an hour allowed us to go from our work or take up our food, and
return to the noisy clatter of machinery. Up before day at the claim of the bell and
out of the mill by the claim the bell into the mill, and at work,
an obedience to that ding dong of a bell, just as though there were so
many living machines. And the author of this article, whose name
is Almira, you don’t get away from that. Reminds Ellen that she
has also been recently complaining about the country life too.>>[LAUGH]
>>The constraints of the farm and everything she left behind, and
she advises Ellen to contemplate the cultural and intellectual
advantages of mill girl life in Lowell. And so Ellen reconsiders this and
she concludes that things really aren’t so bad after all.>>[LAUGH]
>>Thank you.>>[APPLAUSE]>>[MUSIC] [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE]>>My name’s [INAUDIBLE],
I wrote the next piece [INAUDIBLE]. This piece [INAUDIBLE] inspired by, well, [INAUDIBLE].>>[LAUGH]
>>And there’s something funny about
[INAUDIBLE] spent a fair portion, actually most of my adult life,
in valleys, originally I’m from the coast. And there’s something interesting, not just sort of cultural but
just in terms of nature. It’s as if, it’s like in the winter
time where it all snowballs and by the time spring rolls around,
it rolls down the hill, and all sort of melted into the same lake. And that’s kinda what it’s like,
it sort of feels like we into each other in a certain way,
and things just feel different. At least to me,
the era is a little less rapid, things seem to grow at a different pace. I’m not sure if any of this is real or
not, but this is how it feels to me. So this piece is kind of
an impressionistic take on that, and sort of my feelings
living in the Valley. I also have a small slide show
which is gonna be running while, These fine musicians are playing. So if you don’t like the music,
you can just look at the pictures.>>[LAUGH]
>>Thank you.>>[APPLAUSE] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [SOUND]
[SOUND] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE] [APPLAUSE]>>You’ve probably read in the a program, the next piece, which is Chambi’s
inspired by photography of the noted Peruvian indigenous
photographer Martin Chambi. We are fortunate that Martin Chambi’s
grandson, Teo Chambi who lives in Cusco, Peru, gave us permission to show images
of the photos while we play the piece. A brief explanation of the titles of
the movement, Harawi de Quispe, the first movement, Harawi is a melancholic lament
which is typical in Andean music. Quispe refers to the name of the man
you will see in the photograph. Miguel Quispe who was an important
indigenous leader in the 1930s. This particular movement calls for
alto flute, because the composer Gabriella Lena Frank
thought the alto flute sounded very similar to the quena which
is an indigenous wind instrument. The next movement is Marinera which is
a vigorous coastal dance from Peru. The image you will see on the screen
are some street musicians who were playing together in the most
unusual pickup group. And so this is a very energetic movement. At times, it almost sounds like Organd and I are playing different dances
at the same time, but it’s okay.>>[LAUGH]
>>Enjoy the photos and the music. [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [APPLAUSE] [MUSIC]>>I’d like to introduce this group. This is an African choir from
the LA Presbyterian Church. I’m a music director, and
although I did not direct this group, but I support them and they are wonderful so
I hope you’ll really enjoy. We have people, we have a Kenyan, some
Ghanaians and some Cameroonians, right?>>Right.>>All right,
can your neighbor raise his hand. Cuz we couldn’t find him.>>[LAUGH]
>>We couldn’t find him for a while. All right, welcome.>>Yes.
>>Okay, good, here we go. [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE]>>Good evening. Our first song is gonna be titled,
I Know the Plans. It’s just talking about
the plans God has for us. We all come into this world,
we don’t know what is in store for us, but God has a plan for us. A plan to bless us, a plan to prosper us,
a plan for everything in our life. So just listen to the rhythm,
listen to the wordings and enjoy. [MUSIC] [MUSIC] [APPLAUSE]>>Okay, we are closing the occasion, so I need people to relax,
you’ve been sitting down. The way we sing,
we don’t just stand, we move. So if you are moved by this, please
move with us, because we will be moving. Let’s find our soul. Things Are Getting Better. [MUSIC]>>[APPLAUSE]>>Our pastor this year, Pastor
>>[LAUGH]>>Reverend Heather, praise God. Give it up for her.>>[APPLAUSE]
>>Thank you.>>[APPLAUSE]>>Now that was a pretty
good ending today concert. What I really loved about tonight’s music
was just all the different varieties. All the different reflections of
this wonderfully diverse of both. And we saw from across the globe
the influences that have come here. And we had our composers who brought
those out in different ways and with different sounds,
different voices, different lyrics. It was really tremendous to see just
the variety of the music today. Could you [INAUDIBLE]
>>[INAUDIBLE]>>[LAUGH]>>Let’s go, come on in. Get all the performers in here. Okay, come on. Okay, so I was just saying how just
the diversity of the music and how wonderful it was. And everybody really enjoyed it. So if you wait one second. I just wanted to present you with this.>>[APPLAUSE]>>Thank you for coming and
please come back. We have lots of interesting and exciting
concerts planned here and in [INAUDIBLE]. So I look forward to
seeing all of you again. Thank you.>>[APPLAUSE]