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Feb 13th
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New Life For New Music Works

altThe estate of the late Cecil Carnes revitalizes performing arts and music program

Phil Collins didn't expect his project to have legs. But New Music Works has been a runaway success thanks in no small part to Cecil Carnes, who donated her estate to the music and performing arts organization upon her death in 2011.

“I never thought of New Music Works as having staying power beyond what I was able to put into it,” Collins says.

Founded in 1979 by five composers, including artistic director Collins (who’s served in that position since 1982), New Music Works organizes concert series and is “dedicated to presenting music of our time in concert,” according to their website.

Carnes offered her estate to New Music Works back in 1997, at a musical function.


“She used to own the Lemon Yellow Farm, and she would host these ‘avant-garden’ parties,” Collins says. “In 1997, she was hosting [late Bay Area composer] Lou Harrison's birthday party, and she offered us her estate.”

Collins maintains that the donation of close to $28,000 came as a complete surprise.

“It was out of the blue, because she wasn't a regular donor,” Collins says. He pauses thoughtfully and adds, “I would see her sometimes, and give her a hug.”

Collins has high hopes for the future of New Music Works, with the caveat of community support weighing heavily into his optimism.

“Hopefully we can begin to reach out to broader segments of the population,” he says. “The whole genre of classical music has changed so much, and people are always surprised by the genres we pull in—jazz, rock ‘n' roll."

Carne's generous donation of close to $28,000 is representative of a trend that Collins hopes will continue.

“Branching out to more people is fundamental to our existence,” Collins says. “We need to be reaching people who we don't normally reach.”

Collins says that New Music Works intends to use Carne's donation to build up the organization's infrastructure. More “avant-garden parties” rife with chamber music ensembles are likely to follow.
 

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

The New Tech Nexus

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