Last month, South Philadelphia’s Federal Winds quintet gave a special pop-up performance in the Grand Lobby of Parkway Central. The group, consisting of some of Philadelphia's most sought-after teaching artists, provide music education through school programs, studios, and after-school sessions. Their first hand experience in these roles allows them to see the impact of music education in our youngest Philadelphians.
After wishing a Happy Mother's Day (and a Happy Victory Day) to the audience, the group took off. Their set included a work by jazz great Paquito D'Rivera (Aires Tropicales) and an intense piece by David Maslanka. The music wound up the staircase and patrons came down from their computers to sit on the steps and watch. Afterwards, patrons and librarians enthusiastically approached this author to ask questions about the music peppering the lobby.
If you’re a musician, many of the selections Federal Winds performed came from the Free Library’s Chamber Music Collection. Musicians from all over the United States depend on this circulating collection of part-sets.
And even if you’re simply a music fan, the Free Library still gives you free access to high-quality recordings of music. Our Alexander Street Press database lets you listen to high-quality streams of music and read liner notes. You can also narrow your search by instrument, if you're interested in listening only to solo oboe, or, say, only traditional music from VIetnam.
The Music Department's proud to lend a hand in reimaginging live music in library spaces.