After the Pause — Chamber Music is Alive and Well!
I’m sitting on the porch on one of those perfect summer afternoons that Ithaca occasionally
serves up, reflecting on the FLCE and the passage of time.
Our ensemble started presenting programs in 1990 – “brought together by the shared love
of chamber music” – as our PR statement of the time put it. We were a group of enthusiasts,
who gathered for the love of the art form with a keen desire to share it. We brainstormed
programs, located venues and reached out to like-minded musicians who then joined us for
various performances. Gradually we developed a core group with guest artists and a strong
From 1990 on the FLCE presented seven to ten events every season. The programs included
great masterpieces of the chamber repertoire, premieres and commissioned works, as well
as works by under-represented composers.
That is, until March 2020, when, along with so many performing groups, we had to shut
down our season. Two long years followed, and it wasn’t until May 2022 that we felt able to
return to in-person performances and begin to rebuild. Despite numerous challenges, FLCE
presented our first post-pandemic, in-person season in 2022-2023: three chamber concerts
and a special event at Red Newt Winery. We were delighted to be on stage again, to perform
for so many of our loyal audience members and to meet newcomers.
Now it’s our pleasure to announce our 2023-2024 season!
We will be presenting three chamber concerts and two special events. Guest pianists
Special Pre-Season Fundraiser Event: A Summer Salon Concert/Silent Auction
Red Newt Cellars
August 27, 2023
We’re delighted to be presenting this pre-season fundraiser at Red Newt! We have very fond
memories of our Salon there last October. Richard MacDowell and I will be joined by I-Fei Chen
and Noam Ginsparg in a program that features music of Bach, Schumann and Arvo Pärt. Ticket price includes admission and delicious light fare, and Red Newt Cellars will have their fabulous wines available for purchase by the glass and bottle. In addition to a concert of great music in this stunning setting, the August 27th Summer Salon will mark the conclusion of our first-ever online auction! As a special bonus for audience members, the auction items will be on display at Red Newt that evening, and guests will have the opportunity to see them in person and place any last-minute bids. Seating is limited so be sure to purchase your ticket soon!
September 24, 2023
Works of Brahms, Beethoven, Bruch and Amy Beach will be featured on this program, which
will be presented in the beautifully renovated and acoustically excellent Hamblin Hall in the
Community School of Music and Arts. Molly Morkoski joins Barry Crawford, Janet Sung,
Stefan Reuss and me for this program of classic and romantic gems.
Special Event Salon - A Bach Celebration
December 17, 2023
This too is a much-loved FLCE tradition that we are delighted to reestablish. I-Fei Chen
and Barry Crawford will join me for discussion and performances of three works by the
Master. The concert will be followed by a beverage and light-fare reception. Seating is
limited so make your reservations early!
March 10, 2024
I-Fei Chen and Barry Crawford join Janet Sung, Stefan Reuss and me for this program,
which features three very distinctive works by the Czech composers Leoš Janáček, Bohuslav Martinů and Antonín Dvořák.
Mother’s Day Concert
May 12, 2024
We’re also very happy to have reestablished this FLCE tradition! Molly Morkoski and Barry
Crawford will open the program with a lovely sonata by Mélanie Bonis, a late-romantic
composer now receiving well-deserved attention. Richard MacDowell will be the featured
performer in Weber’s virtuosic Clarinet Quintet. The program will close with Elgar’s
enigmatic, hauntingly beautiful Piano Quintet.
As I’ve considered FLCE’s past, present, future, it’s clear to me that our group’s love for and
dedication to chamber music is shared by you, our amazing audience members, many of
whom have been part of the FLCE family for years now.
Chamber music is definitely alive and well after the Pause.
Our work is, however, just beginning. Ticket sales cover only a portion of concert production
costs, which continue to rise. We are deeply grateful to you for your generous support throughout the long COVID hiatus, and your enthusiastic support of our return season. As we continue to rebuild and look forward, we hope that you will consider a contribution to the FLCE.
We look forward to playing for you this season!
Finger Lakes Chamber Ensemble