About me

I am an active composer and organizer of music events. I share a monthly Music as Meditation concert with listeners and fellow musicians and I organize several concerts of new music each year. I use this blog to tell people about my musical endeavors.

Appeal for Summer Strings

Help for Summer Strings
Time is the best thing about summer. I have time for planning projects, writing music, and watching dragonflies. The new piece, Dragonfly Dance, that I played for the first time at Music for Meditation is one way that my music-making benefits from a little leisure. With free time, I can take the leap of faith necessary for big projects like this year's “Summer Strings” and “Music for a Resonant Space.”
I'm asking for your help with Summer Strings—a new-music festival featuring a string orchestra of 12 to 16 players and two soloists who are volunteering their time to play the music of living composers. The festival will take place from August 4 to 6. Players will rehearse over those three days, but the soloists have already begun. On August 6, at 5 PM (Music as Meditation time) we will present that music in a free concert.
The Simplicity Testimony” and Music Festival Planning
A music festival of this scope in our times would normally have a money budget in the thousands of dollars. There would be line items for paying players, conductors, and composers, for paying the recording engineers, and much more. Because of my current thinking about money and community, I have chosen to undertake this project with the explicit goal of keeping the money budget as low as possible. This is my current understanding of what Quakers mean when they talk about “the simplicity testimony.”
The generosity of people who care about the unifying power of music makes this possible. The welcoming congregation of Christ Episcopal Church is giving us the space to rehearse and perform. Sixteen players have told me they will play or are trying to clear their schedules. Four composers—Larry Wallach, Ken Turley, Ralph Farris, and I—have written music and made parts.
How You Can Help
  • Contribute a picnic item and help set up for lunch on Saturday, August 5, from 12:00 to 1:00 PM on the lawn of Christ Episcopal Church. You are all invited to attend.
  • Spread the word. I will need help hanging posters and sharing information by e-mail, facebook, and youtube.
  • Usher at the concert. Ushers will hand out programs, direct the audience, and place a donation basket at the back of the church AFTER the concert—to maintain a welcoming atmosphere.
  • Make a monetary donation to the festival fund. That fund will go toward tuning the piano, producing posters and programs, and giving a travel stipend to musicians who need it: some of the musicians are traveling quite a distance and must make the trek three times. Below is a money budget. Any extra donations will go toward my next project: Music for a Resonant Space.
Summer Strings Money Budget
                                      Piano Tuning: $125
                                      Travel Stipends for Musicians: $225
                                      Posters and Programs: $50
                                      Total: $400

To help with this project, please e-mail me at ellen.m.schwindt@gmail.com or call me at 447-2898. You can learn more about this and about upcoming projects on on my facebook page or youtube channel.  

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