The Mid America Freedom Band, Kansas City’s community band of LGBT and allied musicians, is partnering with Turn the Page KC, Mayor Sly James’ initiative to promote third-grade literacy and reading readiness, on April 12 at the ensemble’s “Reading is Fundamental” concert held at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.
“When the opportunity was presented to us by Emily Kuennen, one of our ensemble members and staff person at Turn the Page KC, to help encourage young readers, we jumped at the chance. It is such a logical fit for both organizations,” states MAFB artistic director, Lee Hartman.
MAFB requests that concertgoers bring a book appropriate for K-3 school-age children, to donate to Turn the Page KC. Turn the Page KC staff members will be in attendance to collect and collate the donations for distribution. In appreciation, all attendees who donate will be given a raffle ticket for a chance to win an assortment of prize baskets.
“I’m thrilled that the Mid America Freedom Band, a progressive organization founded on principles devoted to unity and inclusiveness, has embraced Turn the Page KC,” said Mayor Sly James, Chairman of the Board for Turn the Page KC. “I am so thankful to the group for being a partner in this endeavor and look forward to see the fruits of these efforts.”
Now in its eleventh season, MAFB’s “Reading is Fundamental” concert is programmed with selections of music based on works of literature. Among the pieces to be performed are Robert W. Smith’s “Inferno” from the Divine Comedy which draws inspiration from Dante’s 14th-century epic, Tchaikovsky’s take on Shakespeare’s immortal tale of star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet, Paul Creston’s Kalevala, inspired by the Finnish national poem and its off-kilter 5/4 meter, Johan de Meij’s “Gandalf” from his Lord of the Rings Symphony which encapsulates the great wizard’s spirit and that of his horse, Shadowfax. Also included are popular tunes from Les Misérables (based on Victor Hugo’s 1862 novel) and the Wizard of Oz from L. Frank Baum’s immortal series along with William Schuman’s seminal When Jesus Wept, David Del Tredici’s tender “Acrostic Song” from Final Alice, and John Williams’s blockbuster score to Jurassic Park.
MAFB’s “Reading is Fundamental” is Saturday, April 12, 2014 at 2:00 pm in the Atkins Auditorium of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Name-your-price tickets are available at www.freedomband.com. For more information about Turn the Page KC, visit www.turnthepagekc.org.