CMN "LET FREEDOM SING" WORKSHOP, SONG SWAP & CONCERT
Saturday, January 18, 2020
11:00 am to 12:00 pm - Workshop
12:00 pm to 1:00 pm - Lunch & Networking
1:00 pm to 2:30 pm - Song Swap
2:30 pm to 3:00 pm - Break
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm - Kids Concert
Wissahickon Valley Public Library
650 W. Skippack Pike
Blue Bell, PA 19422
David C. Perry
CMN Mid-Atlantic Co-Coordinator
Just before MLK Day, this special event will get rolling at 11:00 am with an inspiring informative workshop, ""Songs of Social Justice: Creation, Production & Distribution” led by Rodney Whittenberg.
Rodney is an Emmy award-winning composer and an Emmy nominated filmmaker. He is the founder of Melodyvision (www.melodyvision.com) an audio music and video production company. His professional work, no matter the client, seems to center around social issues, community service, and political action – from the children’s CD “We Stood Up,” a celebration and reflection on the civil rights, to his latest film “Portraits of Professional Caregivers Their Passion Their Pain,” a look at the impact of secondary trauma of teachers / first responders / firefighters / police.
Rodney’s passion for music and film is followed closely by his love of civics, history, and politics. As a lifelong creator of political music he has always wished there was an outlet for contemporary political art. Rodney has used his creativity, and keen sense of seeing opportunity to create a win win by finding unique distribution partners and opportunities for himself and his clients.
The 11:00 am Workshop will be followed by lunch at 12:00 noon, a1:00 pm Song Swap and then a 3:00 pm public Children's Concert called “Let Freedom Sing!” to honor Dr. King’s inspiring words, “Let freedom ring!” Thanks to all the early-bird musicians who signed soon enough to perform - but even if you’re not officially on the roster, we’ll try to find ways for you be part of the fun.
Happy Holidays to all – and see you next year!
Your Mid-Atlantic Co-Coordinators,
David C. Perry
December Song Swap
On Sunday, December 15, 2019, Children’s musicians and educators in the DC/MD/VA area gathered with a few intrepid travelers from Philadelphia for a CMN Song Swap at Cleveland Park Congregational United Church of Christ in Washington, DC. We settled into their cozy parlor and spent a couple of delightful hours sharing songs and socializing. It was great to welcome many new faces who were attending their very first CMN get-together. They were excited to learn that the next Annual Conference will take place this fall in nearby Leesburg, Virginia. Afterwards, several of us went to dinner together at a nearby restaurant.
Song Swap & Potluck at David & Jenny’s
We had a great CMN Mid-Atlantic get-together on Sunday, November 17, 2019 at the home of David & Jenny Heitler-Klevans in the Philadelphia area. We schmoozed, ate a delicious potluck dinner and jammed together playing songs covering a wide variety of themes and musical styes. People came from as far away as northern NJ, the DC area and Kenya!
To get a taste of the songs we shared there, check out this video.
Bomani Armah & Vanessa Baba Bomani
Danny Adlerman (Danny & Kim)
Julie Beth (Ants on a Log)
David & Jenny Heitler-Klevans (Two of a Kind)
Annie Lynn (AnnieBirdd Music)
David C. Perry (Mr. David's Drawings, Songs & Silliness)
Bruce & Linda Pollack-Johnson (Two's Company)
Steve Pullara (Cool Beans Music)
We also shared stories about September’s CMN Annual Conference in Arizona and discussed plans for next year's Conference, which our region will be hosting in Leesburg VA (near DC) October 2-4, 2020. This was a great way to get the ball rolling towards that big event.
Mister G Benefit Concert & Song Swap
On the evening of July 11, 2019, Boston-based CMN member and Latin GRAMMY® winner Mister G performed a Benefit Concert at The Undercroft, Grace Episcopal Church in Silver Spring, MD. This special event was a fundraiser to support the wonderful work of our CMN colleague Stephen Wandu Bimo whose organization “I Can South Sudan” brings music and art to unaccompanied child refugees at Camp Bidibidi, Uganda (the second largest refugee camp in the world), healing the wounds of war, and promoting peace for the next generation Highlighting the event was artist, author, activist and educator Ben Gundersheimer who has been hailed by the Washington Post as "a bilingual rock star". Kudos and hugs to CMN Co-President Val Smalkin for being a prime force behind making this happen!
“Here Comes Summer!” Song Swap & Kids Concert 2019
On June 22, 2019, the Mid-Atlantic Region CMNers shared songs, exchanged ideas, and enjoyed each other's company at our annual “Here Cones Summer!" Song Swap, Luncheon, and Kids Concert at the Army Navy Country Club. Richard McLaughlin, Praneetha Akula, Elnathan Starnes, David & Jenny Heitler-Klevans, Jim Thorne, Val Smalkin, Marsha Goodman-Wood, and Margot Bevington, enjoyed a delicious lunch (thanks to Jim Thorne!) and at 2:00 pm joined forces to entertain parents and children at the club. Special thanks go to Marsha Goodman-Wood for providing the sound system, and Jim Thorne for arranging the venue for the second year in a row,
Alphabet Rockers Workshop
On May 10, 2019, Alphabet Rockers, Kaitlin McGaw and Tommy Shepherd, led a workshop focused on identifying and interrupting patterns of bias. Participants thought about and shared the first time they noticed race. and how those early interactions impacted them, especially when they were negative ones. For a number of participants, memories started in first grade (age 6 or 7), and acknowledged that similarly, the children in most CMN audiences are absorbing racial bias and patterns in their forming memories. The question: How can we interrupt the patterns of bias in ourselves to be sure we aren't impressing micro aggression onto our audiences?
Through song, movement and discussion, Tommy and Kaitlin helped us more fully understand the impact of our word choices regarding gender, and how those impact kids, For example, instead of using "guys" or "boys and girls" or "he" we can use "friends" or "everybody" to keep genders inclusive and ambiguous, rather than assigning gender. More questions: Can we reflect on our word choices and make changes to be more inclusive? How can we prepare ourselves to react constructively when a child comments on skin color or gender and put forth positive messages?
And there were more questions asked and many more yet to be asked. Thanks to Marsha Goodman-Wood for bringing the Alphabet Rockers to the Mid-Atlantic.
“Sing a Rainbow” Song Swap & Kids Concert 2019
On Saturday, March 9 2019, we returned to the Free Library of Springfield Township (in Wyndmoor, PA) for another day of socializing and singing. Like last year, this event was a resounding success on every level.
Things got started with wonderful workshop, "The Three Magical C’s: Connection, Caring & Consistency", presented by Tammy Keorkunian, Founder/Director of Children's Music Express (www.childrensmusicexpress.com). Through discussion and fun practices, we gained new perspectives and tools to enliven our teaching/performing experiences, grow our classes/audiences and have more of an impact on our children’s lives.
After an hour of lunch and socializing, we got to share our music in an informal song swap. It was a great chance to play (and play along on) some of our favorite original songs and cover tunes – beautifully demonstrating how we CMNers are often each other’s best resource.
Then we set up and performed our public concert for an enthusiastic, appreciative intergenerational audience. This year's lineup was Allison DeSalvo Adams, Dave Fry, Andrea Green, Tammy Keorkunian, Annie Lynn, Richard McLaughlin, Michelle Miller, Peter Moses, David C. Perry and Steve Pullara.
Thanks to everyone involved for helping to make this one of my new favorite annual traditions!
Pickleberry Pie Benefit Concert
On November 17, 2018, the Children’’s Music Network Mid-Atlantic Region teamed up with The Music Experience for Young Children to present a special benefit concert for Pickleberry Pie Hospital Concert fro Kids, The event was held at Abington Friends Meeting in Jenkintown, PA, and the performers roster was David C. Perry, Pauline Houston McCall, Two of a Kind (David & Jenny Heitler-Klevans), and Peter Moses, as well as Keisha Hutchins Hirlinger with students from Abington Friends School. The event also included crafts, snacks, raffles and prizes. All proceeds went to support music programs at hospitals in the Philadelphia area.
CMN Pool Party, Song Swap & Potluck 2018
On August 26, 2018 before summer slipped away, The Children's Music Network held a Mid-Atlantic regional event as an opportunity for musicians and their families to gather for a hearty last hurrah at fhe lovely home of Janet Schreiner (leader of The Cat's Pajamas) in Wynnewood, PA, just northwest of Philadelphia. We swam, socialized, swapped songs and shared a meal in an informal atmosphere of merry-making and mutual support.
The day featured some fabulously fun musical jams, with the variety of voices and instruments delightfully combining to create concoctions greater than the sum of their parts. The relaxing poolside vibe was a refreshing change from our most recent CMN events (in March and June) which included public concert performances.
Huge heartfelt thanks to Janet and her hubby Mark for once again hosting us at what has become one of our all-time favorite venues for CMN events.
For more pictures, check out this Facebook Photo Album:
David C. Perry
Co-Coordinator, CMN Mid-Atlantic Region
A few kids from the audience pose with CMN performers (left to right) Richard McLaughlin, David C. Perry, Marsha Goodman-Wood, Valerie Leonhart Smalkin (with Silly Goose), Margot Bevington, Jim Thorne and Don Bridges..
“Here Comes Summer” Song Swap & Kids Concert 2018
On June 23rd, 2018 CMN members from various corners of The Children's Music Network Mid-Atlantic region descended on the Army Navy Country Club in Arlington, VA, for a “Here Comes Summer!” Song Swap & Kids Concert. This was our first DC-area gathering in a while, and folks in the southern extremities of our region appreciated having a get-together that was more geographically desirable than recent Pennsylvania and New Jersey events. CMNer Jim Thorne, a longtime Club member, deserves a boatload of thanks for his tireless efforts in arranging for us to use this fabulous venue. Heartfelt thanks, also, to Marsha Goodman-Wood, for being the main organizer and point person for her first Mid-Altantic event in her new role as Co-Coordinator.
We all gathered at 10:30 am in the Sports Camp Room of the ANCC Fitness Center for a wonderful informal Song Swap, which was a great opportunity to learn new songs, old songs, and share some of our favorite songs. We covered a wide array of topics, including a healthy helping of outer space themes, plus environmental issues and attitudes of gratitude. One of the highlights was a fabulous library song that had been written the day before (!) by “Mr. Don” Bridges, who was attending his first ever CMN event.
At 12:30 pm, we trekked over to the magnificent main clubhouse for delicious outdoor patio lunch, where we got to eat, drink and network. Generous Jim even subsidized the meal of any musician who gave him a CD of their music. It was during this time that we sorted out the performance slots for the afternoon concert.
At 2:00 pm, it was showtime! We set up in the bright and beautiful “Rainbow City” room and launched into our Kids Concert, when we took pleasure in pooling our talents to entertain a lively audience of club children and their parents. It was a real blast singing harmonies and playing along with each other on guitar, mandolin, conga, maracas and harmonica. What a wonderful "harmonic convergence”!
When things finally wrapped at 3:30, Sheila Chandler, the ANCC Junior Activities Manager, told us how thrilled she was at how much everyone enjoyed our show – and said she’d love to have us back again next year!
I can't think of now better way to welcome summer. All-in-all, a wonderful win-win-win situation.
CMN “Sing a Rainbow” Workshop, Song Swap & Kids Concert
On March 17, 2018, we enjoyed a full day of musical fun at the newly opened Free Library of Springfield Township in Wyndmoor, just outside of Philadelphia. Calling this event "Sing a Rainbow" was a nod to St. Paddy’s Day, diversity, and Philly children's TV legend, Captain Noah.
CMN member Peter Moses, of The Mindful Experience LLC, kicked things off with an inspiring workshop presentation entitled "The Magic of Mindfulness in Education: Supporting the benefits of present moment awareness for our kids and ourselves." Peter passed along some easy-to-learn, mindful practices and games and answered questions regarding mindfulness in education, in the workplace and in family life.
After an hour of lunch and networking, we shared our music with each other in an informal Song Swap that included a wonderfully wide selection of material that all managed to inspire, comfort or delight us in the midst of these trying times.
Following another brief interlude, we pooled our talents to stage a Kids Concert that was open to the general public. The performers were Dave Fry, Richard McLaughlin, Michelle Miller, Jean Milman, Peter Moses, David C. Perry, Steve Pullara, Janet Schreiner, Rodney Whittenberg, and Arlyn Wolters. Unable to attend, due to illness in their families, were Andrea Green and Tammy Keorkunian (of Children's Music Express).
The library was thrilled with the tremendous audience turnout, which appeared to be the best ever for a CMN Mid-Atlantic public concert. Truly, a good time was had by all!
You can see a Facebook Photo Album of the event here: