When the weather fails, let music speak

Will County Inside/Outside Guide offers suggestions for enjoying your rainy weekend

Welcome to The Herald-News’ Will County Inside/Outside Guide. Each week, Features Editor Denise M. Baran-Unland (@Denise_Unland61) highlights a few ideas for you to enjoy your weekend in Will County.

The original quote attributed to Hans Christian Anderson is “Where words fail, music speaks.”

Rain is on the forecast this weekend in Will County. But you can still have a fun, virtual weekend centered around music (and visual art) – thanks to a full line-up from Joliet Junior College.

Now I know many people are tired of virtual events. But you might want to register for one of the concerts JJC is offering this weekend anyway.

For as much as we’ve heard of how arts programs have moved online, I was nearly moved to tears (yes, that’s right - tears), when I saw – and heard – the majesty of a virtual concert on Zoom from the JJC Community Band.

It wasn’t just the amazing sound that came through my speakers. It was the fact that this sound was so well coordinated from each musician’s space. I can’t even imagine the logistics to orchestrate it.

As much as COVID-19 has challenged us, people have found a way to work right around it in ways no one even considered a year ago.

Here’s the clip so you can hear what I mean: tinyurl.com/y42ct5wa.

And then check out the following art programs.

Juried Students Art Exhibition

The Joliet Junior College Juried Students Art Exhibition runs through June 14. Artwork includes paintings, ceramics, drawing, design and jewelry/metals. Vsiting juror Christopher T. Wood of Milwaukee, Wisconsin selected the pieces.

View the gallery at tinyurl.com/5cjme594.

Read the Wood’s statement at tinyurl.com/2efwbsk3.

JJC Jazz Combo and JJC Jazz Band - Spring Concert

The JJC Jazz Combo and Jazz Band will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 14.

The band will perform arrangements from Mary Lou Williams, Fletcher Henderson, Louis Armstrong and Sammy Nestico.

The jazz combo includes Joseph Cook (trombone), Sam Burns (guitar, trumpet, vocals), Ethan Featherly (piano), Noah Burns (keyboards), Mitchell Pulido (electric bass), Dana Goodman (drums, percussion) and Professor David Nuccio (director).

Register at zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_6i48q0JUSwyv8eThJP13oQ.

JJC Guitar Ensemble, JJC Chamber Singers, JJC Chorale - Spring Concert

The JJC Guitar Ensemble and the combined JJC Chamber Singers and JJC Chorale perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 15.

The guitar ensemble will feature traditional South American tangos, classical guitar duets, Joe Satriani, and jazz standards by Morgan Lewis and John Coltrane.

Ensemble performers include Levi Bergbower, Sam Burns, Mitch Pulido, Alex Rodriguez, Ken Smalley

The combined concert of the JJC Chamber Singers and JJC Chorale will be Philip Spencer’s final occasion as conductor of these two college choirs. Spencer will retire in May after 20 years of service.

Debra Miller is the accompanist and audiovisual designer of this performance.

The concert will include three choral works rehearsed and recorded by each choir member: How Good! a contemporary gospel piece on the theme of unity; I Dream a World, a setting of a poem by the Harlem Renaissance poet Langston Hughes; and Modimo, an exciting traditional song of praise and celebration from South Africa in the Sesotho and Zulu languages, accompanied by African percussion and dance.

Register at zoom.us/webinar/register/WN__NTUjmn7Tf-Pl2PK2Hd24g.

JJC Steel Band and JJC Community Band - Spring Concert

JJC’s new Steel Band concert and the 42nd annual Community Band concert will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday, May 16.

Performing on authentic, hand-tuned oil drums, the JJC Steel Band will feature calypso, reggae, soca and pop favorites. Professor Adam Cowger will direct the ensemble. Caribbean music is by Len “Boogsie” Sharpe, Lord Kitchener and others.

This community band concert is made up of videos recorded by band members in their homes, then submitted to be assembled into the virtual ensemble. The concert is a celebration of American music with pieces by American composers.

This includes works by John Philip Sousa, Jack Stamp, Henry Fillmore, John Mackey and Robert W. Smith.

Register at zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_wMIdsEzXT8q0z_UgzLscgg

Thoughts? Drop me a line at dunland@shawmedia.com.