by Daniel Hathaway
One of the iterations of Music for Food, a musician-led initiative to fight hunger in local communities, is an annual concert to benefit the Greater Cleveland Food Bank. This year’s event will take place at First Baptist Church in Shaker Heights on Tuesday, February 18 at 8:00 pm. Sponsored by the Student Government Association of the Cleveland Institute of Music, the performance will bring CIM faculty and students together for music by Camille Saint-Saëns, Charles Gounod, and Felix Mendelssohn.
Faculty musicians include Jeanelle Brierley, Olga Dubossarskaya Kaler, and Jaime Laredo, violins, Sharon Robinson, cello, Mary Kay Fink, flute, Frank Rosenwein, oboe, Afendi Yusuf, clarinet, Barrick Stees, bassoon, and Richard King, horn.
Student artists completing the roster are violinists Shannon Lee and James Thompson, violists Joseph Skerik and Alyssa Warcup, cellist Sarah Miller, oboist M. Isaac Ripple, clarinetist Marquise Lindsey-Bradley, bassoonist Corbin Krebs, hornist Rachel Lauson, and pianist Melivia Raharjo.
In a telephone conversation, CIM faculty cellist Sharon Robinson said, “We try to attract different audiences, and we also give our services to different food banks. The concerts that have been organized in private homes have mostly supported the Kosher Food Bank, and that’s been a big success. In the past, the CIM student government has held its event at Mixon Hall, but of course, there’s no parking available this year because of the dorm that’s being built. They had a contact at First Baptist Church, so we’re going to go with it. The church has plenty of parking spaces.”
Robinson admits to being a bit nervous about filling the pews in that large venue. “It’s a school night, which is not the best time, but the chance to hear Jaime Laredo play the Mendelssohn Octet with his wonderful students, and Richard King’s ensemble play the Gounod Petite Symphonie, should be a powerful draw. Putting these big chamber works together is a lot of work for everyone involved, and they’re not performed so often.”
The program also includes a smaller work, Saint-Saëns’ Havanaise for violin and piano. “That will feature Olga Kaler and one of our best student collaborative pianists, Malivia Raharjo.”
Admission will be by donations of canned goods and/or money, but Robinson stresses that monetary donations are most needed — and go the farthest toward feeding the food bank’s constituents. “It’s a very efficient operation,” she said. “For every dollar raised, they can prepare meals for four people. Just think of what $50 could do. I really hope that we can raise awareness about all the hunger that exists in Northeast Ohio.”
Published on ClevelandClassical.com February 3, 2020.
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