Make Music Winter, a free outdoor musical celebration with exuberant and participatory parades, performances and events across New York City and dozens of US cities, returns during the Winter Solstice on Tuesday, December 21.
The annual event welcomes people of all ages and musical abilities to celebrate the joy of making music with other members of the community. Since its debut in 2011, Make Music Winter has offered music enthusiasts a way to meet, parade and perform in public spaces, and make music with bells, electric guitars, vocals, percussion and more unusual instruments.
In keeping with the giveaway season, the sound toys will debut in Make Music Winter in The Mutant Toy Parade, a participatory composition by the Argentinian artist. Laureano Cantarutti premiered in six US cities. Children and adults are invited to come and experiment “curve“toy flying, recordable buzzers and disfigured talking dolls designed by Cantarutti and assembled by local musicians in each town. Participants will then march through the streets playing music using the toys and hand percussion instruments, which will be free of charge. take away Christmas gift for other musical experiments. Mutant Toy Parades will take to the streets of New York (NY), Montclair (NJ), Salem (OR), Knoxville (TN), Toledo (OH) and Altoona (AP).
Returning for the second year, Rhythm Band Instruments (RBI) celebrates Make Music Winter across the country, providing over 300 instruments ranging from Bells to Boomwhackers in eleven cities for participatory winter music. The RBI bells will be playing in “Bell by Bell” in New York (NY) from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm in SoHo (at Elizabeth St., between Prince and Spring St.). This event has become a Make Music Winter tradition, with volunteers from Elizabeth Street Garden handing out color-coded bells to revelers who take a crash course in the basics of hand bells, then play collectively with a team of conductors. orchestra. Forty miles upstream of the river at Ossining/ Briacliff (NY), RBI instruments will be part of a Make Music Winter day of concerts, interactive music events, workshops and music lessons, offering something for everyone. In the small town of Land O ‘Lakes (WI), RBI will offer instruments for beginner ukulele and hand bell lessons. Other RBI-supported events will take place in Montgomery (AL), Toledo (OH), Salem (OR), Montclair (NJ), Altoona (PA), Federal Way and Gig Harbor (WA) and Milwaukee (WI).
But nothing compares to New York, the birthplace of Make Music Winter, where nearly 20 musical gatherings and parades will bring neighborhoods to life across the boroughs, from Flatfoot Flatbush in Brooklyn to Melrose Parranda in the Bronx. New York events (in addition to Bell by Bell and the Mutant Toy Parade) will include:
“African Drumming” – 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the Plaza at 300 Ashland, Brooklyn
Join a Drum Circle Master Class led by Brooklyn Music School to learn and perform Congo and West African rhythms on school-provided djembes and congas.
“Flatfoot Flatbush” – 4: 00-6: 00pm in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn
Featured with Porch Stomp, City Stompers and the North Flatbush Avenue Business Improvement District and celebrating its eighth consecutive year, dancers, fiddlers and pickers will parade down Flatbush Avenue playing old tunes while walking flat , a form of percussion dance from the Appalachians.
“Standing Still” – 10:45 am-11:15am in Midtown Manhattan
Musicians from all walks of life with an instrument that can be played on the move – acoustic guitars, horns, strings, percussion, you name it – will join the band Tilted Axes: Music for Mobile Electric Guitars in a participatory 30-minute parade. through Midtown South, including a stop at Herald Square at 10:59 am sharp when the sun “stops”, and during which the whole ensemble will mark the occasion with a magical minute to surprise spectators.
“HONK NYC! Presents Radiant Revelry” – 6:00 pm-7:00pm in Greenwich Village
HONK NYC’s Fourth Winter Solstice Procession is a cathartic parade of music and dance that commemorates the lives of those lost after two years of COVID-19 and celebrates a time of revitalization and hope. The parade winds its way through the West Village to a final at Astor Place Plaza, as does a separate parade, “Tambor Tuesday Street Jam” – 6:30 pm-7:30pm – sets out on a route through the East Village to the legendary Drom club. “Tambor Tuesday”, presented in partnership with the Afro Latin Jazz Alliance, features music from Afro-Brazilian, Afro-Cuban, samba and reggae traditions and features musicians from Mambembé Music, Afro-Cuban rumba with Kikiriki Biquey and People of Earth.
“Harlem Solstice Jam” – 5: 00-7: 00pm at Uptown Grand Central
Enjoy a lively evening of brass, samba and fanfare music. The program includes performances by Afro-funk / Latin / New Orleans style brass group The Underground Horns; Batalá, an all-female Afro-Brazilian samba reggae percussion group; the Harlem Marching Cobras, and more.
“Melrose Parranda” – 6:00 pm-7:00pm from Bronx Music Hall
The Bronx Music Heritage Center (BMHC) is hosting its 7th consecutive Make Music Winter program in the Melrose section of the Bronx with a procession or parranda, the Puerto Rican tradition of Christmas carols. Based on the music of plena and other holiday songs from the island, this festive parade will be led by members of the Bronx music and cultural community, including Jorge Vázquez, Matthew Gonzalez and Bobby sanabria. Each stop along the parranda will be a different casita, the little houses that evoke the Puerto Rican countryside.
“L’Alléluia Mobile” – 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Starting from the steps of the main branch of the New York Public Library and working your way through six other iconic downtown locations – One Vanderbilt, Rockefeller Plaza, Times Square, Carnegie Hall, Columbus Circle and Lincoln Center – participating singers will give seemingly spontaneous pop-up concerts of Handel’s famous choral masterpiece, the “Hallelujah Chorus”.
Other Make Music Winter events across the country include:
- Long Beach, CA – Open Jam with OLLI Recorders, Club of Harps and The Jazz Angels. Everyone is invited to jam with Make Music Long Beach featuring all three bands and a full music jam at Marine Stadium Park.
- Boston, MA – Making Music Winter Boston. Join the Downtown Boston Business Improvement District for an afternoon of music! Victorian Carolers, Downtown Holiday Brass, and Mediterranean Holiday Band will be performing in downtown Boston as part of their Holiday Market.
- Pittsburgh, PA – Sing-Along with Anna From Frozen. All ages are invited to join in a song worthy of the queen of Arendelle. Local musician Elizabeth chase will lead the audience to sing along to classic Christmas carols, as well as those from the hit movies, Frozen and Frozen II.
- Cleveland, OH – A Musical Hike. An eight-kilometer hike with members of the Cleveland Hiking Club through the Tremont and Ohio City areas, the troupe will stop along the way to play popular and secular holiday tunes on kazoos and sing sheet music.
- Litchfield, CT – Community meditation and sound healing. A daytime meditation event alongside host Grace Magnusson, paired with a gong and singing bowls.
- Macon, GA – Where the soul rocks! Free gifts on the sidewalks of downtown Macon including kazoos, chopsticks and more to make music!
- Rochester, NY – “Atelier Maracatú”. Participants can learn to play the basic rhythms and instruments of Brazilian maracatú music and discover its cultural background. Instruments will be provided.
Make Music Winter celebrations will also take place in Philadelphia (PA), Santa Fe (NM), Crystal Lake (IL), La Crosse (WI), Port Hueneme (CA), Hawaii, and more. Additional information, events and cities will be posted on www.makemusicwinter.org.