At 12:15 p.m. Sunday during the Crafts Alliance craft show on Bestor Plaza, the players of the Thursday Morning Brass will perform in front of the Colonnade. Their mission is to raise money for a scholarship fund that helps students in the Music School Festival Orchestra.
The question on everyone’s mind at Chautauqua Institution’s annual Library Day: What is your favorite book? Kids from the Children’s School and Boys’ and Girls’ Club are provided with stickers to write their answers on. Even some adult attendees spend all year thinking about what title they will proudly display on their shirts.
On a Thursday morning in the Hall of Christ, trumpet player Paul Weber stood from his chair to conduct the brass ensemble he started almost 14 years ago, snapping his fingers to keep up their tempo. Joe Prezio, co-founder of the ensemble and other Chautauqua Amateur Music Program groups, called out, “Italians don’t march to 120.”
It was another Thursday morning rehearsal and another march rehearsed for Chautauqua’s Thursday Morning Brass, the first amateur music group founded on the grounds, whose spirit has added a whimsy and lightheartedness to the season that impacts the members as much as the Chautauqua community.
Tuesday afternoon at 4 p.m. in Elizabeth S. Lenna Hall, the Thursday Morning Brass will perform their annual concert, but this year, the ensemble will also feature its fellow amateur music groups the Summer Strummers and the Dixie Lakesiders, as well as a tuba-euphonium quartet that has never performed before.
Smith Memorial Library, a gathering place on the grounds, will take a day to celebrate the giving personalities of local librarians. The Summer Strummers, a group of some of the most generous personalities on the grounds, will strike up a sing-along on the library steps from 8:30–10:30 a.m. this morning.
Library Day has been a tradition on the grounds long before Lynn Kinnear, library director, arrived on the scene in 1990.
“It’s just a day that shines the spotlight on the library for the community and also the area librarians,” Kinnear said.
On the front lawn of the Catholic House, five musicians in red vests begin playing an old folk tune as patrons sit on the porch, peering down. Two mandolin players and a 12-string guitarist line up across the front of the group, with a young girl behind them on violin next to an older gentleman on the double bass.
A cartoon sign to the group’s left says it all: “You’re listenin’ to the Summer Strummers!”