Montclair Dads Make Music Work For Peace

The inaugural concert of Music Works For Peace (MWP) rocks this Saturday, May 31, at 7:30 pm at Montclair’s Union Congregational Church. The benefit concert raises funds for MWP, an educational not-for-profit, while they raise diversity awareness and celebrate cultural differences by bringing world music programs to at-risk schools in Newark. MWFP is the brainstorm of two Montclair music-loving dads, Bill Bloom and Alan Stepansky. Cellist Stepansky was moved and motivated after playing a Darfur benefit concert at Carnegie Hall, and with Bloom, former performing artist and musician, conceived the project. “The vision of world peace is broad,” says Bloom, “so we brought it to a local level, helping Newark schools.”


The concert features Brazilian percussionist Cyro Baptista and his quartet, Banquet of the Spirits, as well as Stepansky, music professor and former New York Philharmonic cellist.
Baptista ‚Äì a jazz giant who performs with artists Herbie Hancock, Yo-Yo Ma, Laurie Anderson, Paul Simon, Medeski Martin and Wood ‚Äì joins Banquet of the Spirits, a quartet that embodies the philosophy of Anthropofagia, a Brazilian cultural movement from the 1920’s.
Alan Stepansky joins a world-class string ensemble to debut The Grateful Inventions – a classical reinvention of the music of The Grateful Dead orchestrated for string and percussion. The eclectic program includes selections by Mendelssohn, Couperin, and more.
Tickets — $37 for adults, $25 for children 12 and under ‚Äì are available here. Union Congregational Church, 176 Cooper Avenue, Montclair.

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10 COMMENTS

  1. I actually looked up “anthropofagia.” And I was right, it does refer to ‘cannibalism’ of a sort, the idea of piling cultures into one another in order to form a dominant one. (As Brazilians like to claim about their national culture.)
    But I just keeep thinking of that movie of some years back by Nelson Dos Santos about 17th century explorers, “How Tasty Was My Little Frenchman.” And even the concept of cultural cannibalism seems a bit unseemly for a concert ostensibly devoted to world peace, unless the idea is that beneath our skin colors and doctrinal divagations we all still pretty much taste the same. (Which, according to everything I’ve ever read, is more or less like pork.)

  2. Way to go, Alan and Bill! We love when you talented guys play locally! You rejuvenate our community with your music and community spirit!

  3. “A classical reinvention of the music of The Grateful Dead orchestrated for string and percussion. The eclectic program includes selections by Mendelssohn, Couperin, and more.”
    Is this a late April Fools joke of some kind?

  4. A classical reinvention of the Grateful Dead? And so close to home. Sounds awesome. I live close enough to Union Cong that I can run home during “Space,” put the kids to bed, pay a few bills, return a couple of phone calls, water the flowers on the porch, shower and change, and then return just in time to catch the end of “Drums.” I can only hope “Wharf Rat” comes next.

  5. I’ll be the guys selling the Grateful Falafel and ice cold Bass Ale in the Union Cong parking lot.

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