Tag Archives: music

Family Fun! Main South Celebrates at Crystal Park tomorrow!

Main South Celebrates!

This festival offers the entire Worcester community an opportunity to unite through free musical performances, food, activities, and games for all ages. The goal of the festival is to celebrate Main South, the neighborhood’s revitalization efforts, and the reclamation of Crystal/University Park.

The festival is family-focused, with seperate kids section equipped with bouncies, facepainting, arts & crafts and more!

The performances will knock your socks off and the foresty department will be returning to hoist children into the trees.

As always, MSC! 2011 will have free burgers, hot dogs and hamburgers!

3 on 3 Basketball Tournament.

Ages 12 to 18. Be there at 12 noon SHARP with your team ready to play. Tournament is scheduled from noon to 3 pm. Tournament will take place during Main South Celebrates.

Be there! Crystal/University Park is located on Main Street, between Crystal and Gates, directly across from Clark University.

Visiting Lowell for the Lowell Folk Festival

By Rosalie Tirella

I went to the Lowell Folk Festival this past weekend. It was everything Worcester is not (when it comes to huge summer events). Providence has Water Fire, Lowell has the Lowell Folk Festival. Worcester has … ???

What I liked about the event: It was three days long. All the concerts – hundreds of them – were free. And there were so many different stages/areas from which to listen to/dance to the music! (I remember one year at Lowell Folk listening to a young Allison Kraus – before she met Robert Plant, before she became world famous – fiddling – while standing on the bed of a pick-up truck!!) All the musical acts this year were first-rate, with many artists of national prominence. The folk festival was smack dab in the middle of what is a lovely, historic downtown. The food was fantastic – a sampling of all the ethnic cusines of Lowell, courtesy of all the local, ethnic churches/nonprofits. Chruch groups galore! Selling: their home-made Indian food, Greek food, Vietnamese food, Soul food etc. The money you spent on all the exotic goodies went to all these great urban churches/nonprofit agencies. You wanted to spend your cash to support all these great churches/groups! And finally, the Lowell Folk Festival attracted white folks, black folks, poor folks, middle-class folks, kids, teens, young adults, 20-somethings and old people.

Utterly, beautifully inclusive.

What does Worcester have that is comparable to this amazing, free, three-day-long musical extravaganza? An event that trumpets Worcester’s history? An event that impresses out-of-towners/shows off the city?

An important point: Lowell was damned lucky the urban renewal plague of the 1970s passed over it because today all its downtown’s great, old, brick buildings – repointed, power-washed, repainted, with new (smaller) businesses inside – still exist. And they look fab! They make downtown Lowell walkable, colorful, interesting, multi-cultural … . And then, right in the middle of downtown: THEIR CANAL. A REAL CANAL! The one that put Lowell on the map in the first place, the canal that made Lowell the place to work if you were an immigrant and needed a job (in the textile industry). Looking at Lowell’s canal puts you in awe of th people who built it and toiled because of it. It is heavy, big, serious, maybe dangerous … . So unlike Worcester where we have our “canal,” the fake little vinyl-lined pool that Allen Fletcher likes to paddle around in on Harding Street during Worcester’s canal fest, which is held in what is now becoming one big yuppy watering hole – “The Canal District,” complete with rowdy fights and bras left on the sidewalks infront of barroom entrances. I had the pleasure of stepping over one a few years ago.

Nope. Lowell’s celebration of its canal and the people who built it and worked it is REAL – not fake like the Fletcher bullshit. The city puts on a FIRST CLASS folk festival – not some rinky dink show, and no one is charged a penny to enjoy these world-class musicians, singers, songwriters. Years ago, at one of my first Lowell Folk Fesitvals, I remember listening to Elvis Presley’s original back-up group! If you closed your eyes, you could swear Elvis was crooning and fake humping in the foreground.

I wonder how many hundreds of thousands of dollars this costs Lowell. Worcester should be as generous to its history/people! Invest the half-million, City Manager O’Brien! We are sick of paying our cops salaries of $125,000, our teachers salaries of $90,000! Money for the the people! Not just for the same 300 or so connected families!

But I digress. Another plus for Lowell: It has a textile museum downtown, it has a quilting museum downtown. Even its public art – a huge spool of string sculpted from granite – reflects the city’s proud history. REAL people. Working people. That is what the Lowell Folk Fesitval is celebrating, even honoring. Fletcher has sucked the gritty truth out of my old neighborhood. Of course, he has! His great grandparents and their pals owned the Worcester factories in which immigrants toiled! He and his ilk were the exploiters of my grandparents! So, of course, Fletcher’s take on Green Island (the original name of the “Canal District”) is warped and condescending. He sits around and talks about restaurants … . This man is close to 65 years old. Will he ever grow up? The world is not his oyster – even with all his millions of bucks. Stop being a fucking tourist in your own city, Allen!!!

With the Lowell Folk Festival, and its museums and its real canal and the public art, you get a great vibe: community. Lowell is celebrating its people – the working-class. The folks who toiled in Lowell, had strikes in the city, danced and sang in the city (with much of their music rooted in their homelands from across the globe), and worshipped their God in the city. The Lowell Folk Festival is a world-class event; it is a perfect melding of the people, music and history of a blue-collar city.

When will Worcester step up and have this kind of summer event? It will cost thousands and thousands of dollars, if we want to do it right and have it FREE of charge. It will mean including all voices – not just the same old same old.

But don’t you think our city is worth it?

Hundreds of performers, visual artists surround Waltham campus for Leonard Bernstein Festival

WALTHAM – Be on the lookout as innovative art emerges from unexpected places at this year’s Leonard Bernstein Festival of the Creative Arts.

Arts events will encompass the campus, indoors and out. Work created especially for the festival will be exhibited, and performance art “happenings” – mash-ups of dance, theater, and music – will pop up in various locations from now to May 1.

The Brandeis Electro-Acoustic Music Studio will sponsor a 12-hour marathon of experimental media and electronic music by an international roster of musicians and composers in conjunction with the Boston Cyberarts Festival.Performers will include Mari Kimura, Michael Lowenstern, Shanna Gutierrez, Krista Reisner, Geoffrey Burleson, Phoenix Ensemble, Phillip Staudlin, and Talea Ensemble.

Waltham artist Judy Thomas’s large-scale sculpture/installation called “Tendrils” will envelop the Shapiro Campus Center.

Among the many student performances, highlights include the irreverent satire of teen angst “Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead,” by Bert V. Royal, directed by Summer Williams of Boston’s Company One; and A Cappela Fest, a charity concert featuring nearly 200 Brandeis students and concluding with a tribute to Michael Jackson. Continue reading Hundreds of performers, visual artists surround Waltham campus for Leonard Bernstein Festival

For Valentines everywhere: Understanding love through music

By William S. Coleman III

In the 1970 blockbuster film Love Story starring Ryan O’Neal and Ali MacGraw, two students from different classes of society, Oliver “Preppy” was rich and Jennifer, his love, was working-class they fell in love against the wishes of Preppy’s rich father. This movie takes us through a rollercoaster ride into the many emotions and deep feelings of the passions of love. From that movie comes the eternal phrase of young innocent love: “Love is never having to say you’re sorry.”

Love is an emotion for all times. When it’s good, it’s real good. But when you hurt from a broken heart or a deep trust has been broken or you feel someone has fallen short of your expectations, the hurt and pain will send you into a seemingly endless spiral of deep depression and regret.

Love is challenging. When I think of the music of love and how the lyrics talk to your heart. Continue reading For Valentines everywhere: Understanding love through music

Ring in the New Year at HOPE party at YMCA, Central Branch, Jan. 1!

By Domingo Guyton

On Saturday, January 1, HOPE Recordz is sponsoring HOPE In The Community at the Central Branch YMCA, 766 Main, Street, Worcester, MA. After the death of our beloved sister Michelle Diaz on August 31, we began planning an event that can bring the young people together in unity, which also allowed them to have fun. With all of the violence and negativity surrounding our community, we want to bring HOPE to everyone through this event. We want to start 2011 in a positive direction, encouraging people to have hope, even when things seem hopeless.

The event is an all age event and the admission fee is $10 per person. Half of the proceeds will go to members of Michelle’s family, who are still trying to put their lives together after this horrific incident. The night will consist of a 5 on 5 Basketball Tournament, which the winning team will win $200 and an Open mic/Spoken Word competition, in which one winner will win $200. Continue reading Ring in the New Year at HOPE party at YMCA, Central Branch, Jan. 1!

My John Lennon (for his 70’th birthday)

By Rosalie Tirella

It’s true – every Baby Boomer knows where he or she was the night John Lennon was killed. I was in Worcester, in the passenger seat of my pal Jane’s little gray Honda. Jane and I and my other best buddy, Tracy, had spent the evening hanging out. Then, as Jane was driving down Lamartine Street in Green Island, to drop me back home, the news came on the radio: John Lennon shot – by some nut job in the lobby of the Dakota Hotel in New York City, where Lennon and his second wife, Yoko Ono, lived.

I gasped. Jane pulled over. And we both cried. We were around 18 or so and, for me at least, Lennon and the Beatles, were a talisman for me. The ticket out of Worcester. By that I mean mentally – emotionally. A lovely musical escape hatch.

The Beatles – through their songs – told me I could transcend the crumby three-decker apartment I shared with my family in Green Island. Through my imagination, through poetry and songs and writing, I could leave our tenement. Fly away on dreams of strawberry fields, walruses, yellow submarines. The Beatles collective imagination (musically and lyrically) was enough to blast a kid right out of her poverty and dangerously circumscribed world. Continue reading My John Lennon (for his 70’th birthday)

New Main South Farmers’ Market is open!

By the great folks at Worcester’s REC (Regional Environmental Council)

After a great pilot program last September, the Regional Environmental Council’s Urban Gardening Resources of Worcester (UGROW) has kept its promise and successfully brought a new farmers market to the Main South community for this year’s New England harvest season. The Main South Farmers’ Market (MSFM), located at 807 Main St at the corner of Benefit and Main has been up and running since Saturday, June 6 and will be open every Saturday, 10 am – 2 pm, through October 31.

Local farms have been setting up shop on Saturdays from 10am to 2pm at the corner of Benefit Street & Main Street to sell their locally grown produce and locally made products. The last two Saturdays, there was a variety of produce, freshly baked breads, freshly made corn tortillas and handmade crafts. Gibson’s Dairy provided local milk, cheeses, eggs, honey and maple syrup. At the first market day, there was also entertainment by Dan Burke. Youth from the Toxic Soil Busters were also on hand to perform their latest and greatest hits. Continue reading New Main South Farmers’ Market is open!