Abby London-Crawford In Association with The Sanctuary Arts Initiative
R.I. Sutherland-Cohen for T.K. Blue, Dick Griffin; Alexandra Ionescu for Michael Wimberly; Gulnara Khamatova for Zaccai Curtis; Marta Monko for Ensemble Elektra.
“Even though the church is located behind and across from Port Authority, its sanctuary is ideal for music, as it offers an environment that envelopes you immediately with its calming and welcoming ambience,” says Ms. London-Crawford, the producer of the event.
For over ten years Ms. London-Crawford has been the festival manager of the Hell’s Kitchen Cultural Center’s annual “Rhythm in the Kitchen” Music Festival, which had its beginnings in this very church, Metro Baptist, in 2006, and 2007, before being relocated to another neighborhood church. HKCC will produce their future festivals at Metro Baptist. This evening, however, is Ms. London-Crawford’s first independently produced concert.
Ms. London-Crawford has also been a volunteer in two of the many services at Metro: the winter clothing closet and the Hell’s Kitchen Farm Project, which has been growing vegetables for its community-based Food Pantry on its roof for six years now.
“I am inspired by the work of the Sanctuary Arts Initiative, the site of exciting music, dance, social events, and film, and am grateful that its director, Lily Womble, was eager to welcome me with this concert. It is perfect that they are feeding folks in body, and now spirit through the arts.”
AN EVENING OF MUSICAL MASTERS
“I don’t like to categorize or label music, or box it in,” Ms. London-Crawford points out. But I titled this concert, “An Evening of Musical Masters,” for a reason. What is a master? Each musical artist on this program exemplifies the true meaning of a musical master: one who takes up the lessons and legacy of his or her mentors; learns; does not rest on his or her laurels; and moves the music forward, often becoming a teacher in turn.
“Regardless of age, we recognize brilliance when we hear it. We hear the traditions, influences of the ‘elders,’ all the creative forces exercised for an inspired, deeply felt communication between player and listener/participant.
“At the concert, we will hear written and arranged compositions, as well as spontaneously improvised ones. These moments are often remembered for a lifetime. Such mastery in music uplifts, and that artistry can be a healing force. I know the musicians on this program feel that way every time they play.”
Metro Baptist Church <!–