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George Frederick Handel was wildly popular with his audiences in spite of being a carnaptious fellow.  The maestro was adamant that no one talk while his music was being played.  He was actually known to curse aloud during concerts and call out an offender’s name ~ rank, royalty or celebrity didn’t impress George. The explosive firebrand was kick-ass tough.

Attending a concert shouldn’t be anxiferous. It’s not a trip to the dentist.

I listened to Peter Pertis (so can you, click here) play Handel. No theatrics, no posing. He just sits and makes music. Relaxed and without effort. He uses every key ~ it sounds like there are more than two hands on the piano.

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The concert was SRO. Playfulness and poesy, it was an hour of Olympian joy inside the walls of the Blake Library.

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Pertis’ Hungarian-European education was enriched in Japan. He settled in the U.S., spending some time as a visiting artist/professor at the Hartt School of Music in CT. (Seems we both ‘adopted’ the same towns, north and south. But he’s a world renown pianist and I’m just an inept living room dabbler.)

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The Blake Library and its staff are the hub of our little Florida community. They do it all and they do it very well.  Especially when it comes to music.

Around St. Patrick’s Day, The Rowdy Micks brought their bodhrans, fiddles and traditional Celtic tunes to The Blake.  The audience was on their feet, singing and clapping, the whole time. Not exactly Handel’s pint of Guinness.

Thanks to the generous gifts of many Martin County donors, the events are plentiful and frequent and free. The most recent group at The Blake was brainy, brilliant, and bright-eyed.

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Senior Yale women created what has long been absent from Yale’s a cappella tradition: a senior women’s singing group of searingly gifted musical talent that promotes the equal role of women. Whim ‘n Rhythm ends each year with an international tour, singing from Maine to Hong Kong, Club Med to the White House. The fourteen women (there’s a local Yalie in the group this year) sing upbeat jazz standards and classic show tunes, contemporary pop favorites and traditional ballads.  Sass meets sweet charisma.

I love the Blake ~ a high-functioning entertainment machine.

Classical, Celtic, or Collegiate ~ the music speaks for itself.  

Where do you get your live music fix?

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Toni 3/21/14

8 thoughts on “THE LIBRARY REINVENTED ~ IT’S ENOUGH TO MAKE YOU WANT TO LEAVE THE BEACH

  1. I am wondering if the warmer weather makes the music sweeter and therefore
    attracts more musicians for more events? So much music (and lots for free) in
    Florida!

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    1. There isn’t a day without some kind of lecture or event close by. ‘Free’, yes, we do pay taxes but the lion’s share comes from sponsorships ~ those most fortunate and successful in their careers are generously footing the bill for a series of themed events, classes, lectures, and untold opportunities that educate and entertain. I am humbled by the enormous number of prosperous families that give back in this area. Buildings, programs, artwork, civic projects, institutes and museums, historic sites and parks, bridges and benches ~ the philanthropic gifts seem limitless, plus the volunteerism is huge.

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  2. Wouldn’t mind spending an evening listening to these hot “a cappella” gals. Thanks for the sampling, Toni.
    Glad Yale finally got around to giving the females their due.

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  3. My Mimi and Pop say they might take us on a trip during the Spring school break. I think they’re thinking of this island of yours, Toni. We L.O.V.E. libraries. The Blake sounds pretty fab, um, that’s fab as in fabulous? (It’s hilarious, though, that we’d go to Florida to visit a library!! Most people wouldn’t have that on their list of reasons for going on vacation. As a Real Book Person, someone who always has a book (or two) going at all times, I get it.

    BTW–I love your writing. (I’m a blogger too, even though I’m 10. Lots of 10-year olds write nowadays. Teachers do writing workshop. It’s pretty good, I’d say. I mean, ALL the kids in my class think of themselves as someone who has something to write about. We keep notebooks, try to lead the wide-awake life, aim to show-not-tell, search for the specifics. That sort of thing. And try to avoid saying “that sort of thing.” :) )

    Isabel Scheherazade (www.isabeltellsherstories.com)

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