‘Be Jubilant, My Feet’
Music and Drama of the Civil War
A Concert to recognize the Civil War veterans buried in Vine Lake Cemetery and the War’s 150th Anniversary
The Civil War saw a boom in music publishing such as the United States had never seen. Whether on the battlefield or at home, people sang.
These songs brought to mind happier times, comforted those at home, and accompanied the soldiers as they marched into battle
March 16, 2013 Saturday 4 pm to 5:30 pm Admission is Free
Church of the Advent, 28 Pleasant Street, Medfield - Directions
Vocal performers that afternoon will be The Proper Ladies, (Deb Goss and Anabel Graetz (right), two local singers who make history come alive with their
a cappella arrangements of folk songs composed during the Civil War. Some of the music performed in this concert was composed by musicians inspired during the war by Medfield’s Lowell Mason.
The Proper Ladies have developed, mastered, and arranged for a cappella a rare and entertaining repertoire. Their shimmering harmonies, authentic costumes, and humorous anecdotes surprise and delight!
Sing along with familiar favorites, sigh to the romantic gems, and laugh with the Ladies as they perform the popular songs of the Civil War.
“The Proper Ladies were absolutely perfect!” – Brenton Simons, New England Historic Genealogical Society
“The audience participation was truly amazing…(their) performance was a uniquely romantic, Victorian delight.” – The Chronicle, Newport, VT
“The Proper Ladies…delighted the crowd.” – The Recorder, Greenfield, MA
A special part of this program will be a living history presentation by local actress Libby Franck (right) who will portray poet and reformer Julia Ward Howe as she composed her “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”
Julia Ward Howe was at the heart of the artistic and political scene during the three decades before the Civil War. She was transformed from New York Belle to a Boston writer and abolitionist. As the wife of reformer Dr. Samuel Gridley Howe, Director of the Perkins Institute for the Blind, she entertained and visited with poets and politicians, among them Nathaniel Hawthorne, Florence Nightingale, and John Brown, the radical abolitionist.
Her anonymously published book of poems, Passion Flowers, enraged her husband and set Boston tongues wagging. However, when she wrote “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” Julia Ward How finally discovered a way to serve the Union cause.
Major funding for this concert was supplied by a grant from the Medfield Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency. Collaboration for this concert was established by Vine Lake Preservation Trust and the Lowell Mason Foundation.
OUTDOOR BAND CONCERT HELD SEPTEMBER 22, 2012
The Lowell Mason Foundation sponsored a Fall Concert held on Saturday, September 22, 2012 at the Stephen Hinkley Memorial Park, 59 Green Street, Medfield, MA from 2:30pm – 5:00pm featuring the Southeastern Massachusetts Community Concert Band of Medway and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Concert Band of Cambridge. Both groups performed a varied program of popular and classical music for concert bands in the tradition of the old-fashioned outdoor New England band concert. The Lowell Mason Foundation had a table set up providing information about the progress of the renovations to the Lowell Mason House, also located at 59 Green Street, including a variety of ways that individuals and companies may contribute to the fund-raising effort.
The Southeastern Massachusetts Community Concert Band embodies the community spirit that was a key ingredient in 19th century community bands. Indoors or out, the SMCCB offers high quality performances for a broad spectrum of musical tastes. The band performs in true community style, playing in town parks, commons, fields and gazebos throughout the summer. In spring, fall and winter months, the band performs a wide variety of indoor concerts. It is an organization member of the Association of Concert Bands. The SMCCB currently has about 50 musicians of all ages from towns throughout the MetroWest area and beyond – including Barrington, Rhode Island, Quincy, Marlborough, Framingham, Plainville, Mansfield, Ashland, Franklin, Natick, Holliston, Hopkinton, Medway, Millis, Milford, Northbridge Upton and more.
The MIT Concert Band was founded by students in the fall of 1948 and was directed for fifty-one years by Conductor Laureate John D. Corley. Mr. Corley made the band widely known for its performance and commissioning of original compositions for winds. In December of 1953, the MIT Concert Band became one of the first ensembles to devote itself entirely to original works for winds in the belief that the wind band is an important and unique means of musical expression and that its repertoire is deserving of performance. In addition to performing works of well-known twentieth-century composers such as Hindemith, Copland, and Schoenberg, the Band has commissioned over 60 pieces for this unique musical genre. Members of the band come from the entire MIT community. Thomas Reynolds and Stephen Babineau are the Conductors of the MIT Concert Band.
Performance clips from the concert ….
The Lowell Mason Foundation sponsored a Celebration Concert to generate funds and awareness of the Lowell Mason House project on Sunday, May 22, 2011 at 2:00 pm at St. Edward the Confessor Church, 133 Spring Street, Medfield, MA. The concert featured the Handel and Haydn Society’s Young Men’s Chorus as well as the Medfield High School Concert Choir under the direction of Margo Nothnagel. In addition Boston-based composer and guitarist Mark Small, pianist/singer-songwriter Anne Marie David, Music Director of St. Edward Church, and Medfield High School violinist Stephen Krawec performed. The concert especially recognized Lowell Mason’s contributions to vocal and sacred music as well as his involvement in the early days of the Handel and Haydn Society. Music by Lowell Mason and other noteworthy sacred composers was performed. The 300 people in attendance also had an opportunity to view a collection of Lowell Mason historical artifacts and photographs of the movement of the Lowell Mason House from Adams Street to Green Street in Medfield. Once again, it was a very successful program and it generated new interest in the Lowell Mason project with a new constituency.
It is the hope of the members of the Lowell Mason Foundation that more performances of this kind will be able to take place in order to keep the spirit and enthusiasm alive for the entire Lowell Mason initiative in Medfield.
LOWELL MASON AUDITORIUM DEDICATED ON APRIL 2, 2011 WITH CONCERT
The new auditorium at Medfield High School was dedicated to Lowell Mason in recognition for his contributions to music education and sacred music not only locally but also across the entire country. After receiving enthusiastic support from the superintendent of schools in Medfield, Robert Maguire, the Lowell Mason Foundation approached the members of the Medfield School Committee who, in turn, voted to name the auditorium after Lowell Mason. On April 2, 2011, students from the Boston Latin School Orchestra and Chorus and the Medfield High School Wind Ensemble and Jazz Ensemble were featured in a performance celebrating the contributions of Lowell Mason to public school music education. These students symbolized the work that Lowell Mason did as the first music educator in the Boston Public Schools as well as music endeavors in which he participated while growing up as a young person in Medfield. This performance was interspersed with guest speakers such as Dr. William McManus, former president of the Massachusetts Music Educators’ Association; Dr. Richard Colwell, a nationally-renown expert on music education from the University of Illinois and the New England Conservatory of Music and Mr. Caleb Mason, a great, great, great grandson of Lowell Mason who brought some perspective of the Mason family to the ceremony. MMEA Members Douglas Olsen, Margo Nothnagel, and Sharon Woodworth of the Medfield Public Schools; Paul Pitts, Ryan Snyder, and Margaret Dougherty of the Boston Latin School, and Thomas Reynolds of the Harvard Public Schools were actively involved in the planning and/or execution of this event. The Lowell Mason Auditorium ceremony attracted approximately 400 people from the community who came out to join in the celebration. The Lowell Mason Foundation is now in the process of selecting an appropriate memorial plaque to mount outside of the auditorium along with any relevant signage that will call attention to the memory of this great music educator.