Bruce Porter Memorial Music Series kicks off 2015-2016 season

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By Laura Mazza-Dixon

The Music Ministry at South Congregational Church is pleased to announce the 2015-2016 Season of the Bruce Porter Memorial Music Series. Four events will be presented in the upcoming season, thanks to the support of an Artscape grant from the Greater Hartford Arts Council and the generous donations received from those in the Farmington Valley community who have attended concerts at South Church for the past several years.

The 2015-2016 Season of the Bruce Porter Memorial Music Series will begin on Sunday, October 18, at 4 p.m. with the first all jazz program, featuring the Nat Reeves Ensemble. Bassist Nat Reeves has been a central figure for the last thirty years in the Hartt School’s Jackie McLean Institute of Jazz. As an educator, Nat mentors some of the future greats of jazz. As a performer, he has toured the world with some of the most important figures in jazz in the last half-century.

The BPMMS Series will continue with a concert on Sunday, November 15, at 4 p.m., featuring soprano Michele Murray Fiertek and baritone Robert Barefield with pianist and organist Stephen Scarlato performing music from the classical repertoire and songs from Broadway shows. Barefield has performed as a soloist on the series before, and the program he has prepared with these illustrious musical colleagues is eagerly anticipated.

On Friday, January 15, 2016, at 7 p.m., organist extraordinaire Jason Roberts will return to create a spell-binding improvisational accompaniment for another classic silent film. This time it will be Buster Keaton’s comedy, The Navigator. The audience for these performances has come from across Connecticut and grows larger every year. The snow date for that program is Friday, Jan 29. Many families with children attend these screenings.

To round out the season, on April 10, at 4 p.m., the Hartt Collegium Musicum will return for the third time to perform orchestral music of the 17th and 18th centuries in historically-informed style with Baroque violin virtuoso Emlyn Ngai directing. The reaction of the audience to the polish and energy of the young musicians in this ensemble has made their appearances in Granby a highlight of the series in prior years. Expect to be wowed by music of composers like Vivaldi, Bach and Handel played to perfection by string orchestra with flute, oboe and vocal soloists. The Hartt Collegium participated in the landmark performance of Handel’s opera Jeptha at Trinity Episcopal Church in Hartford last year. It is an honor that they have put the Granby Series in their calendar for next spring.

The Bruce Porter Memorial Music Series is held in the sanctuary of South Congregational Church at 242 Salmon Brook Street, in Granby. All events and are free and open to the public.  Donations are welcome to support the continuance of the series. An elevator is available for those who need wheelchair access.

For more info call 860-653-7289, or visit: