Archive for the ‘music festivals’ tag
“Without music life would be a mistake. ~Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche
Recently I heard a contemporary musician say on the radio, that music is not meant to be thought, but to be felt. Indeed, if we think about the first beats we ever heard as human beings, it would be the soothing, rhythmic beat of our mother’s heart in utero. Music reminds us of the rhythm of our own bodies, the sounds of our world around us and our body’s ability to reverberate with them. It calls to our souls in words we cannot express, reaching back to older, simpler, lighter and darker places in our collective primal memory. As Ludwig van Beethoven said, “music is the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life.”
It is also a mediator of community life. For centuries, music has called us together, acting as a communication medium over ancient times, place and peoples. Music marks every dimension of our collective cultural lives –births, deaths, transitions, gatherings and separations. It tells us who we are, where we are, what we are doing and all we were in the past. It is, as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote, “the universal language of mankind.”
In this month of July, we are blessed with an abundance of music in our community. Maybe you’ve been hanging out at the Noontime Notes Concert Series which started in June and continues through to the middle of August at the Oak Street Plaza with local trios and quartets? If you haven’t, this concert series is free and open to the public, starting at 11:30am and finishing around 1 – just in time to pack up the picnic! Today, the series welcomes Mark Sloniker on Jazz Piano. The Old Town Sunday Sounds Concert Series in Old Town Square also started last weekend and will continue through August 30 every Sunday from 2-4pm. This Sunday, Finders and Youngberg, a bluegrass group and solo artist Russ Hopkins will be performing for your pleasure. You can find a complete schedule for this series here.
This week of course, kicks off the Fort Collins Jazz Experience, welcoming The Ramsey Lewis Trio to the Lincoln Center Performance Hall on from 7:30pm and then Al Jarreau on Saturday, July 11 starting at 8pm. You can get tickets and more information here. Fill out the form here for a chance to win one of 12 sets of Special Combo Tickets to see BOTH performances ($150 value, 2 tickets to each concert).There is also a great interview with Ramsey Lewis by Stacy Nick of the Coloradoan and full event schedule of the Jazz Festival to fill every single day this week.
Were it not for music, we might in these days say, the Beautiful is dead. ~Benjamin Disraeli
The Beet goes on!
“the Creative Economy at its best, is about communities taking responsibility for their condition and creating meaningful work and a viable economy with the most powerful resources at their disposal. These include the distinct nature and culture of their place, and the creativity of the people — all the while welcoming and learning from those who pass through or who decide to stay” (Tom Borrup, 2009).
When we say someone or something is creative, what do we mean? Imaginative? Innovative? Inventive? Artistic? Fantastic?
Now imagine these adjectives combined with the word ‘economy’ (meaning management of the house)….imaginative economy, inventive economy, artistic economy, fantastic economy…. getting the idea?
The term and phenomenon of the “creative economy” describes industries that have their origin in individual creativity, skill and talent, and have a potential for wealth and job creation through the generation of ideas, products and/or services. These industries and activities are critical not only because of their contribution to the knowledge economy which is in the process of engulfing the globe, but also because of their capacity for urban and civic regeneration, the preservation of cultural heritage and cultural identity and the creation of places and communities as ‘destinations’. Tom Borrup consults, teaches, and writes about community transformation, cultural infrastructure, and the creative economy. He believes that the creative economy grounds itself in an active community of artists, an eternal and constant spring of respect for indigenous/multiple cultures, and finally and most importantly, cultural and economic equity.
In their recent report on the state of the arts in Colorado, the Colorado Council on the Arts issued some surprising statements on the nature of the creative economy in our communities. Indeed, it seems that Colorado is actually quite a creative state, ranking 5th nationally in terms of the concentration of artists overall; 2nd in concentration of architects, 7th in concentration of writers, designers, entertainers and performers, and 8th in concentration of photographers. Interestingly only New York, California, Massachusetts and Vermont rank higher. Here in the Northwest of Colorado, we grow arts and music festivals, visual artists hang down in the Southwest corner where the red rocks, white snow, and green pines blind us with their beauty and the literati hang in the center of the state, inspired by the clear air of the mountains and lakes.
These creative activities, industries, communities and populations are sustained through their emotional and aesthetic appeal to others as they engage in work which is inherently creative and artistic. Why is such work meaningful? Because long before we were literate, art and our artistic endeavors formed the base of a universal language and a dominant form of communicating place, identity, purpose and membership. Tom Borrup believes that creative economies and communities hold onto the distinctiveness of place, remain open to learning and reinvention and accept new ideas from unlikely places, forming common and strong bonds between those involved in local cultural practices and the economic livelihood of their communities. Drawing from the Houston based Project Row Houses, Borrup proposes that in creative communities and economies, art and creativity are woven into the very fabric of life through rituals, ceremony and other utilitarian activities; quality education and strong neighborhoods sustain social safety nets for the community and facilitate social responsibility; economic development is essential for all residents both present and future and architecture as a social practice, should make sense of and preserve a community’s character.
So, make 2009 your year to raise the arts and creative life of your community – check out our website to see and experience the extraordinary offerings here for you – see a show, hear a speaker, go to a festival, and bring your friends!