Sunday, October 30, 2016

Women Musicians Network 20th Concert Wednesday, November 9, 2016, 8:00 pm (doors 7:30) Berklee Performance Center

Christiane Karam & Lucy Holstedt
photo credit: Carolyn Alden
Women Musicians Network
20th annual concert, Wed., Nov. 9th
Berklee Performance Center
"Once again, it's a once-in-a-lifetime show."

20 years ago, Lucy Holstedt moved to Somerville and also co-founded the W.M.N. concert. Today, Lucy (a professor in Berklee's Harmony Dept.) feels "very good" about both decisions: she is now a homeowner here, and this concert has become well known and highly regarded.
One fan is Cambridge Major E. Denise Simmons, whose 2016 PROCLAMATION thanks Holstedt for her huge role in creating an "exciting and diverse showcase {that brings} the gift of music to so many throughout Greater Boston."
"It's never easy," says Lucy—who is also the W.M.N. student club advisor, concert co-director, and primary host—"but I love working with the great, original talent constantly pouring into Berklee. This may be the only college where you could put together such an eclectic concert that's different every year." As always, the focus is on Berklee women (mainly students) as songwriters, composers, bandleaders, and producers. In the course of 90 minutes, you'll see 10 original acts—from Solo Jazz and Contemporary Classical, to Funk/Gospel and Rock.

The Nov. 9th show begins with a Big Band arrangement by Berklee professor Ayn Inserto, based on a jazz composition by pianist Zahili Gonzalez Zamora—a Berklee student from Cuba who has already performed around the world. "I'm excited we're starting with an all-women, 19-piece band," Lucy remarks. "It's not something you see every day."

Soon after, concert co-director Christiane Karam will be leading her magnificent (in my experience) traditional Pletinitsa Balkan Choir. Near the end of the concert is a setting of a poem dealing with refugees. The poem was written by Boston Poet Laureate Danielle Legros Georges (born in Haiti), who now teaches at Lesley University. This poem inspired Holstedt to write "Miles Apart," a song she'll be performing with vocalists from Kenya and Zimbabwe.

Every Women Musicians Network concert I've been to—roughly a dozen so far—is like a cross between an international music festival and a magic trick: 10 acts in an hour and a half!? How is this possible? "The staff at the B.P.C. deserve a huge amount of credit," says Lucy, who adds that W.M.N. student leaders are always working to make smooth transitions between acts.

The focus is on women, but a good number of Berklee men are included. Lucy shows me a draft of the program, and I count participants from more than 20 countries.

Not quite as "international" as Somerville, of course—but not bad for a concert.

Women Musicians Network
20th annual concert the
Berklee Performance Center
8:00 pm - 9:30 pm (doors 7:00 pm)
Tickets: only $8 in advance / $12 day of show

No comments:

Post a Comment