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A Tempo: Three Years After Start of Lock-Down, Chamber Work Recalls, Captures New York's Nightly Tribute to Essential Workers

Evelyn Petcher Brandes
Violinist and Composer Evelyn Petcher Brandes in a video featuring her composition that pays tribute to essential workers and the nightly salute New Yorkers gave them in the early days of the Covid pandemic.

A Tempo this Saturday (3/11 at 7 pm) features an interview with a musician whose Covid-era chamber work will be featured in video form as part of a tribute to hospital and other medical workers. The program also looks at plans by the National Children's Chorus to launch a summer opera camp for teen musicians.

Three years ago this week, states began introducing lock-downs and other restrictions in response to the rapid spread of the Covid-19 Coronavirus. Musicians responded in various ways to the isolation and cancellation of performances, including efforts to capture the emotions and atmosphere in compositions. One short chamber work by violinist, composer and teaching artist Evelyn Petcher Brandes, "7 pm - Audubon & 171st," recalls New York City's evening ritual of applause and clanging pots and pans to thank and support essential workers for their dedication early in the pandemic. A Tempo host Rachel Katz speaks with Brandes about the piece and the video created for it that will be screened as part of a tribute to essential workers on March 16 at New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center.

Evelyn Petcher Brandes
Evelyn Petcher Brandes (l) with the Leadlights Ensemble

The program also features an interview with National Children's Chorus President, CEO and Artistic Director Luke McEndarfer and baritone Johnathan McCullough, who was recently named as the chorus's new Opera Program Director. The Chorus will launch its Vail Opera Camp this summer for students ages 10 - 18 as it continues to expand its vocal training programs and reach new geographic regions in the U.S.

Photo by Matthew Donnelly
Courtesy of the National Children's Chorus
After two years of pilot programs, the National Children's Chorus will launch its Vail Opera Camp this summer, with its production taking place at the Avon Performance Pavillion.

Rachel Katz is the host of A Tempo which airs Saturdays at 7 pm.