Dear Friends of the Rural Musicians Forum,
As we move into the pleasant rush of the holidays, we want to take time to wish you a merry celebration of the season and a happy and most healthy 2022.
We got through 2021! Not without inconvenience, sadness, and weariness from all the complications and losses these times have brought us, but we got through the year. We wish you fortitude and humor, good health and good times in 2022.
At RMF we breathed a sigh of relief as we completed our schedule of seven (7) concerts in our 2021 summer series. Our 2021 schedule was initially developed in the heady Spring days when we thought we just might be on the concluding phase of Covid concern, but still requiring arrangements for everyone’s safety.
We focused on holding all concerts outside, starting the season in July rather than June, holding most concerts on a weekly rather than biweekly schedule, and requesting mask wearing when appropriate, as well as spaced seating, all to help us feel more secure in gathering to hear music played outside. And what music we heard.
Our first five concerts were held at the new Mazomanie Performing Arts Pavilion, designed by graduate students at the School of Architecture at Taliesin.
We started with the Underground Chamber Collective in mid-July who brought us the delicacy and power of Beethoven’s Septet, and then followed with the eclectic and fun mix of Rock, Pop, Funk, Reggae, Columbian Traditional, and Latin American rhythms of the Angela Puerta Band a week later. Week three brought the Red Door Duo, a guitar extravaganza in a myriad of styles from Americana, folk, Brazilian, classical, and a touch of jazz. That was followed by The Evan Riley Band, an acoustic rock band for all ages, that filled the skies with sounds and beats. Concert five was Twa Dogs and their traditional and sweet folk music from Celtic regions. Whew. What an array of excellent music.
But there was more.
The last two concerts in our 2021 season were also held outside, at the Wyoming Valley Cultural Arts Center grounds. In late August we heard The Wisconsin Brass Quintet play Music from the Movies and tapped our toes to favorite tunes from favorite movies. And in early September we reprised the unique magic of a truck concert, this time with three accomplished jazz masters playing artist John Himmelfarb’s truck sculpture—we called it Three Jazz Masters Pick Up the Beat and it was a blast, literally and figuratively.
All in all, it was a memorable summer of music.
We have started planning for the RMF 2022 Summer Concert Series, still considering how to make hearing wonderful music as risk-free as we can, and are continuing to plan for outside concertizing with distanced seating, and mask wearing when appropriate. We hope you will mark your calendars and dust off your lawn chairs for the following:
June 13 The Mosaic Chamber Players, intimate and diverse chamber music with piano and strings
June 27 Common Chord, vocal-centric group with four-part harmonies and instrumentals
July 11 Flute and piano with Dr. Iva Ugrcic, RMF Artistic Director and flutist extraordinaire
July 25 TBD
August 8 TBD
August 22 TBD
September 4 Caravan Jazz, a world traveling instrumental acoustic jazz group
We will be sending another more detailed announcement and summer calendar once the 2022 RMF Summer Concert Series is fully planned, and hope you will look forward to our music and our musicians with as much anticipation as we do.
Our warm regards to you. If you are able to help support our efforts to bring a wide variety of excellent music to the River Valley and beyond, you have our deep gratitude. We thank you for your generosity. In the meantime, best wishes for the new year.
With warm regards,
The RMF Board