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Archive for the ‘Ocean Grove Musical Event’ Category

Harry Eichorn will conduct the Atlantic Wind Ensemble on Saturday, May 25, Memorial Day weekend. 8 pm in the GA. Paul Goldfinger photo. ©

Re-post from 2013.    Harry Eichhorn will conduct the Atlantic Wind Ensemble on Saturday, May 25, 2013.   Memorial Day weekend. 8 pm in the Great Auditorium.  This will be his 61st summer season.  Paul Goldfinger photo. ©

Harry Eichhorn grew up spending summers in Ocean Grove. His family owned a house here for over 100 years.  As a high school student, he was a lifeguard at South Beach. “The South Beach was less crowded and a better place to meet girls,” said Harry, who is 86 years old and will be entering his 61st season as conductor of the Ocean Grove Summer Band, which appears on Wednesday nights at the Boardwalk Pavilion. There his 65 musicians play everything from Berlin to Beethoven.  The sound of their music bubbles up and out over the beachfront, harmonizing with seagulls,  surf and summer breezes.

Harry has his fans who don’t fail to miss one of these summer concerts and Harry doesn’t disappoint them.  He’s always wearing pressed pants, shirt and tie. He always has a joke or two, and the “boys in the band”  (and ladies too) humor him because there’s something touching and reassuring about traditions and music that have staying power despite time passing by.  The beach, the boardwalk, ocean and even the town of Ocean Grove itself  also echo that theme.

Summer Band musician warming up by the Pavilion. Paul Goldfinger photo ©

Summer Band musician warming up by the Pavilion. Paul Goldfinger photo ©

On Saturday, May 25, in the Great Auditorium, Harry Eichhorn will be conducting the Atlantic Wind Ensemble in a free Memorial Day concert.  The Ensemble is smaller than the Summer Band and it performs all year round.   All the musicians are from the “shore area” and many are professionals–including 8 music teachers.  Unlike an orchestra, there are no strings.  Clarinets  and flutes help take the place of violins, and there is only one person per part, although they double up in the trumpets and clarinets.

Harry likes to vary his programs, but there is a certain similarity  to prior concerts.  There are always a few Sousa marches, two major works by a classy composer like Beethoven, and two Broadway medleys, one of which is current.  This year he will be doing “Les Miserables.”  In fact, there is a song in Les Mis which could be Harry’s theme song.  It’s called “Master of the House.”  They will also perform “The Armed Forces Salute,”  “The Spiritual Rhapsody” by Yoder and “Five Spirituals for Piano” featuring first clarinetist Linda Freilick on piano.

The concert will include the Festival Chorus, a group that has about 45 vocalists.

In looking back over the years, Harry recalls growing up in East Orange.  His father was a musician, and Harry received his BA at Montclair State College and his Masters at Rutgers and Trenton State.   He taught  music at Neptune H.S. for a few years and then 36 years at Manasquan High.  Some of the current musicians were his students.  Two of his children play in the group.  Harry’s main instrument was the trumpet, although now he mostly conducts.

Summer Band (undatet---probably 1950's) Harry is on the right, back row.

Summer Band (undated—probably 1950’s) Harry is on the right, back row.  Click right for more detail. Courtesy OGCMA

There is only one musician left in the Summer Band who was there in 1953 when Harry started the tradition.  Her name is Cleta Weber White, and she plays the trumpet.  Harry says that when he began, he had a vocalist in his chorus who sang with John Phillip Sousa.   Oh, and speaking of Sousa, of course Harry will conclude with America’s March:  “The Stars and Stripes Forever.”   And as for Sousa, his ghost will probably be having ice cream in Days while tapping his toes to Harry’s beat and listening carefully to that Stars and Stripes piccolo solo penetrating the salty night air.

The Memorial Day free concert begins at 8 p.m. and donations will be accepted.

—Paul Goldfinger, editor @Blogfinger

UNITED STATES MARINE BAND:  John Phillip Sousa’s  “Washington Post March.”     (Reminder:  Visit Sousa’s portrait at the Historical Society of Ocean Grove on Pitman Avenue.  Sousa is still hanging around in the Grove.)

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Re-posted from 2012 by popular demand.   At that time,  Father Alphonse Stephenson, conductor, presented a concert in the Great Auditorium honoring Marvin Hamlisch, who scored the music for A Chorus Line.  Hamlisch died in 2012

Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger

Father Alphonse Stephenson  is well known to Ocean Grove audiences.  He and the Orchestra of St. Peter’s By the Sea have appeared many times before in the Great Auditorium.  Father Stephenson worked with Marvin Hamlisch while conducting “A Chorus Line” on Broadway—something Father Stephenson did for nearly 3,000 performances.

Father Alphonse Stephenson

The tribute for Hamlisch  included an “Overture to A Chorus Line.”   The show never actually had an overture. In addition, an unpublished song, called “The One Song,”  written by Mr. Hamlisch, with lyrics by the Bergmans, will be sung by Chris Pinella, with Father Alphonse at the piano.

This concert, sponsored by the OG Camp Meeting Association, was presented on Saturday, September 8, 2012 at 8:00 p.m.

Here, from the original cast album is “One”–from “A Chorus Line.”

—Paul Goldfinger

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Paul Eichlin still making his “carousel music” on the OG side of the North End boards. Some day the area behind him will be filled with stores, condos and a hotel. Paul Goldfinger photo. Oct. 2019. ©

Link to a 2018 post about Paul:

Paul Eichlin Blogfinger post 2018.

 

 

WURLITZER CAROUSEL MUSIC:

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Suzie Neustadter entertained the Cabaret audience downtown. 9//28/19 Paul Goldfinger photos and videos.  Click image to enlarge the scene.

 

By Paul Goldfinger,  Editor@Blogfinger.net

For a long while, it seemed that the Chamber of Commerce only had eyes for the blues when it brought the same musical groups downtown for their various festivals.

But this time, seemingly out of the blue, came a wonderful musical program at Main and Pilgrim Pathway, with no street closures, only music of the sort that we have not heard before here:  Broadway, Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, jazz, Gershwin, Amy Winehouse, Beatles, and others, and it was so refreshing and professional.

An Ocean Grover, Lou Parisi, brought the  program that included well known  jazz pianist Art Topolow and a variety of terrific Jersey singers and musicians.  We’ll try to get their names.

And this is the sort of programming that we at Blogfinger have been craving:  something joyful and personal that could connect with a small crowd of locals and without the parking glut and tourist mob scene that we usually see in the  Grove.

I often kid the Chamber of Commercials, but there was nothing commercial about this 3 hour program which was relaxing and great  fun.  Even the traffic going by seemed to add a sense of spontaneity to the music, and that is a desirable quality.

I  tried to find out from a Chamber member as to what bright light ignited this wonderful surprise, but all he could say was, “We wanted a change.”

I’d like to think that this program reflects a new awareness of our community of residents and its needs.

 

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Ocean Grove Summer Band in the Boardwalk Pavilion. 7/5/15. By Jean Bredin, Blogfinger.net staff. ©

Ocean Grove Summer Band in the Boardwalk Pavilion. 8/5/15. By Jean Bredin, Blogfinger.net staff. ©    Click to enlarge

Re-post from 2015.   “Around Town With Jean:”

“Harry Eichhorn’s Summer Band is a treasure. It is reminiscent of days gone by.
Where else can you hear a rousing song, feel the ocean breezes, then stroll for ice cream?”

–Jean Bredin, Blogfinger staff.

Here is a link to a 2013 article which we posted about Harry :     Wild about Harry

VINCE GIORDANO AND THE NIGHTHAWKS

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August 1, 2019. During intermission of the Summer Stars Finale., as the sun began to set.   Music floats out there.  Paul Goldfinger photo©  Click to enlarge.

 

warming up

Warming up. The MidAtlantic Symphony Orchestra was superb, Paul Goldfinger ©

 

Mr and Mrs. Ronald Naldi made their way to the GA where he performed music from Carmen.; a sample is below. Paul Goldfinger photo. 8/1/19 ©

 

By Eileen and Paul Goldfinger,  Editors at Blogfinger.net

The finale of Summer Stars was held on August 1 in the Great Auditorium. It was a magnificent concert.  The music floated out from the open doors to be heard by passersby in the park.

The program had to be changed with just a few days of lead time, but Maestro Jason Tramm was able to put together a lovely and seamless musical event.

The four movements of Scheherazade by Rimsky- Korsakov, a difficult piece, was wonderful with soloist Byung Kook Kwak on violin. It was the story of “A Thousand and One Nights,  and there even was a storm at sea and a ship going to pieces on a rock. There is a taste of that below with Part III  ” The Young Prince and the Young Princess.”

And the Tannhauser Overture, by Wagner, was thrilling with the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra reverberating through the wooden acoustics of the Great Auditorium with no sound enhancement in this program.

Ronald Naldi’s solo was gorgeous as always. He performed a piece from Carmen, and you can get an idea from Eileen’s video clip below.  There is a brief glitch, but then it goes on. The iPhone XS does a respectable job with the sound.

 

 

 

THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA RECORDING:  Scheherazade  part 3, The Young Prince and the Princess.:

 

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Great Auditorium. Music of the Spirit concert. August 26, 2018. Paul Goldfinger photograph ©  Click to enlarge.

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.net

 

The video below is from the final part of this 6 part composition—Songs of Faith.   It is called “Where Moses Stood.” This section includes choir, organ, brass and percussion.  The words from the last two stanzas are:

“Oh, Mary, oh Mary, oh Mary. No! No! No! No! No! No!

“Don’t you weep and don’t you mourn.

“If I could, I surely would stand on the rock where Moses stood.

“Pharaoh’s army got drownded, oh, Mary, don’t you weep, don’t you mourn.”

 

 

 

August 26, 2018.  Ocean Grove, New Jersey.

The Songs of Faith is like an exciting 6 chapter short-story book that unfolds with beauty, grace, emotions, unexpected plot twists, and wonderful melodies.  Each part captures your mind  in a way that as each one draws to a close, you wish it would stay a bit longer but you also anticipate the next surprise.

Composer Gwyneth Walker borrows from time-worn hymns and gospel tunes while punctuating them with lively and modern hooks and tempos.

It is a great privilege for the audience last night that this piece was performed in the Great Auditorium of Ocean Grove, and the OG Camp Meeting Association deserves high praise for their willingness to sponsor such an original commission, in association with the Summit Music Festival in Summit, New Jersey.  And to present this production at no cost is remarkable indeed.

The presentation included the 120 voice OG Choir, the MidAtlantic Brass Ensemble with percussion, Gordon Turk on the Hope-Jones Organ, and soloists including Monica Ziglar (soprano) Katherine Pracht (Mezzo-Soprano,) Justin Beck (Baritone Soloist) and Ronald Naldi  (Tenor Soloist.)

Jason Tramm conducting.

They were all marvelous, and JoAnnn Lamolino (trumpet soloist in Part 4) was so good with her rendition of “Were You There” performed with Gordon Turk that she received an expansive round of applause–well worth the acclaim.

After the concert, I bumped into soloists Ronald Naldi and Justin Beck walking briskly outside, on the dark tent side of the Auditorium.  Beck was already in shorts, while Naldi had loosened his tie.  They were chatting amiably and smiling as they downed some well-earned soft drinks.

As they breezed by I  told them that their concert was terrific, but their smiles and pace indicated that they knew the event was a success—and so it was.

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From Jean Bredin  (video)  Around Town with Jean:

“The Ocean Grove Summer Band performed a variety of songs tonight at the Great Auditorium. this is  Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever”—a traditional march to get toes tapping and hands clapping at the conclusion of an OG concert.
There was a nice crowd who came out to hear the music.
Harry Eichhorn treated us by leading the band for a number of songs .
This is their 66th year.
Here is a Blogfinger link from 2015.

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Paul Goldfinger ©. 2012. Ushers March in the Great Auditorium during Choir Festival.

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Enthusiastic patriots down the row from Eileen and me.     Summer Stars 7/5/18. All photos and videos by Paul Goldfinger.

By Paul Goldfinger, MD, Editor at Blogfinger.net

Another season of Summer Stars unfolded with the Imperial Brass, a world-class group of 30 musicians who traveled to Ocean Grove to present a marvelous concert to 425 enthusiastic folks in the Great Auditorium on a hot summer July evening.

This was a special occasion for the group, because joining them was Phil Smith of Ocean Grove and the World.  Phil has a summer cottage in the Grove and he has played here before.   For  40 years he was principal trumpet with the NY Philharmonic.  And sometimes he plays during Sunday services in the Great Auditorium

In addition, our own Gordon Turk participated on the Hope-Jones organ, and there was another special guest:  Warren Vaché, jazz cornettist.

Probably the most impressive part of the concert was when Gordon Turk conducted an ensemble of 10 brass players to do a brilliant piece called “Grand Choeur Dialogué”  I was mesmerized.

The three soloists were amazing  with gorgeous tones and technique, so we have some video clips.—turn up your volume.     And the Imperial Brass were absolutely the best. To hear such an accomplished group perform within the acoustics of the GA was a great privilege.

 

 

 

 

I cannot express how wonderful this concert was. Our tickets cost $29.00 for two. Sitting near me was Congressman Frank Pallone.  We talked music for  about 30 seconds after the concert ended—he stayed for every note.  I’ve seen him there before.   Don’t miss all the Thursday Summer Stars  concerts coming up. The seats are not reserved.

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