Fourth Not-Just-Classical Jam Session an Opportunity for Growth, Fellowship

Feb 13, 2019
Courtesy of: Barbara Wheeler

The fourth Classical Music Jam Session at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal Church in Beach Haven on Saturday, Feb. 9, drew about 35 music lovers to perform, listen and share.

The event, coordinated by Music Minister Ellen Dondero, has grown since it started in February 2017 and is now sponsored by Holy Innocents’ instead of the LBI Arts Council.

The “jam” element is that the music performed is determined on the fly by those in attendance.

Saturday’s gathering included solos, duets, a quartet and a larger ensemble. The youngest musician, 11-year-old Grant Rupinski, attending his second jam session, played both viola and piano solos. Alan Blackford performed solos on the piano, Father Dan Hinkle performed on the Celtic harp, Vicki Holland soloed on flute, and Jon Holland soloed on string bass.

Spontaneous collaborations brought about a quartet with Vicki Holland (flute), Barbara Wheeler (violin), Grant Rupinski (viola) and Jon Holland (string bass); and duets by John Dondero (trumpet) and Barbara Wheeler (violin).

Some had played together previously, as in the Dondero family duos, one with Chloe Dondero (soprano), accompanied by her mother, Ellen (piano), and the other with Noah and John Dondero, both trumpet players; and married couple Vicki and Jon Holland (flute and string bass).

The final piece was a choral selection, a spiritual, with various participants including a number from the Holy Innocents’ Choir.

The jam achieved its goal of cultivating an atmosphere of learning and loving the music and musicians at hand.

The music series continues with Hinkle featured in a spring concert recital at Holy Innocents’ on Saturday, March 9, at 4 p.m.  —V.F.

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