Our Mission is to share the broad range of chamber music with audiences of any age or interest, through informal, educational, and entertaining concerts.

Our name, Music’s Recreation, is drawn from the title of a compendium of works for the viol published by English publisher John Playford, in 1652. We feel that the name represents our joy in making music and our mission to
re-create music of many time periods and genres.

From the first concerts, the organization has been concerned with interesting young people in the world of chamber music. To that end, it has always engaged in outreach programs. Collaborations have included:

  • Casual Classics concerts at the South Seneca Elementary School in Interlaken; -The Lansing Middle School, as a part of a fundraising campaign for its Arts Booster Club
  • The Danby Community Center in Danby
  • The Grace Church in Elmira as a part of its Music at Grace concert series.
  • The Sciencenter in Ithaca – a program called “Twang, Bang and Toot: How Musical Instruments Work.” This program was also presented for all the third grade classes at Caroline Elementary School and the After School Program at the Northside Community Center in Ithaca.
  • In 2005, Elisa Evett, along with Marie Sirakos, did an Arts in Education Residency at the Newfield Elementary School, working with third graders to stage their own dramatization of “My Father’s Dragon.” Music’s Recreation performed its version of the Marie Sirakos’ adaptation of the book with music by Eric H. Feinstein.
  • A collaboration with elementary school students in Tompkins County, engineered by conductor Ubaldo Valli, in which they wrote their own poetry to be read during a performance of “Carnival of the Animals” by Camille Saint-Saens.
  • Performances at Grace Episcopal Church in Cortland.

In 1993, Music’s Recreation produced the first of four annual Fingerlakes Bach Festivals. Each was a three to five day series of thematically-oriented chamber music concerts and lectures. In April, 1995, our season changed to three annual Casual Classics Concerts, in which we concentrated on making classical chamber music as accessible as possible to the broadest range of audience members and interests. Our current concerts are informal and reduced in length, with commentary on the music, and often incorporating theater, puppetry, mime, and dance.

Most recently, we have worked with local composers to bring new music onto the concert stage. Those collaborations have given us:

  • Mark Simon –  “Carnival of the Sub-Atomic Particles”
  • Christopher Morgan Loy –  “Poetic Rejuvinations” – based on the poetry of Ernestina Snead, Jay Leeming, Mary Oliver, Kenneth McClane, and Billy Collins
  • Tom Schneller –  “Jorinda and Joringel” – for narrator and small ensemble, based on the tale by the Brothers Grimm.
  • Tom and Oliver Schneller –  “Into Silence” – based on the sounds of the natural world, involving both acoustic and electronic musical elements.