East Brunswick Arts Commission holds concert to benefit planned memorial

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COURTESY OF ELAYNE RISLEY
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(Left to right) Violinist Igor Szwec, Pianist Diane Goldsmith and Cellist Vivian Barton Dozor who performed at the East Brunswick Arts Commission's "Music Transcends" concert on March 10 at the East Brunswick Community Arts Center. COURTESY OF DIANE GOLDSMITH
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COURTESY OF ELAYNE RISLEY
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COURTESY OF ELAYNE RISLEY
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COURTESY OF ELAYNE RISLEY
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(Left to right) Violinist Igor Szwec, Pianist Diane Goldsmith and Cellist Vivian Barton Dozor who performed at the East Brunswick Arts Commission's "Music Transcends" concert on March 10 at the East Brunswick Community Arts Center. COURTESY OF DIANE GOLDSMITH
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COURTESY OF ELAYNE RISLEY
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COURTESY OF ELAYNE RISLEY

EAST BRUNSWICK – The East Brunswick Arts Commission recently held the “Music Transcends” concert, which featured the Arcadian Trio performing songs in a fundraiser for the Lost Souls Public Memorial Project.

The Arcadian Trio includes pianist Diane Goldsmith, violinist Igor Szwec, cellist Vivian Barton Dozor and narrator Ivan Woods.

The music that was performed was written by composers Alexander Zemlinsky, Dmitri Shostakovich, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and David Baker, according to East Brunswick Arts Commission member and Lost Souls Public Memorial Project member Elayne Risley.

“Our concert was titled ‘Music Transcends’ and it featured composers who have wrestled with adversity, such as racial or religious prejudice, or struggled against tyranny,” Goldsmith said. “Their music transcends those circumstances by stirring the emotions of new generations of listeners. A highlight of our program was the premiere of a new work based on spirituals, those songs of enslaved Africans in America [by Kile Smith].”

More than 100 people attended the concert on March 10 at the East Brunswick Community Arts Center’s Elliott Taubenslag Theater, Cranbury Road.

The trio has performed together for eight years. Goldsmith said Woods presents images and offers commentary about the composers’ lives before each selection to put the music into historical context.

Risley said the mission of the Lost Souls Public Memorial Project is to create a public memorial in East Brunswick to recognize the almost 200 individuals who were sold into slavery by a local magistrate, Judge Jacob Wickle, in the early 19th century.

Jeffery Litt, the township liaison to the East Brunswick Arts Commission, said the commission members believed the trio’s performance would be a good opportunity to help raise funds for the Lost Souls Public Memorial Project.

“The music performed by the trio was all by composers who have gone through some sort of hardship during their lives, and that component matched closely to why the Lost Souls Public Memorial Project wants to build a monument in East Brunswick,” Litt said.

Goldsmith said, “The Arcadian Trio is proud to be playing this concert and raising consciousness around the issues faced by both the composers represented in our program and those who lost their liberty in that shameful chapter in East Brunswick’s history.”

Risley said a portion of the proceeds from the concert will be presented to the Lost Souls Public Memorial Project. An announcement will be made with the donation to the Unitarian Society of East Brunswick, which serves as the fiscal agent for the project.

“All were treated to an afternoon of consummate performances of classical excellence.
Many had never met a composer before. Welcoming the Arcadian Trio … at the joy-filled reception following the concert was an added treat,” Risley said. “The audience actively embraced the performers while others were busy seeking autographs and sampling delectable home-baked treats. The East Brunswick Concert Committee basked in the glow of a stellar performance amidst an enlightened concert community.”