Sister Bay, Wis. (November 21, 2022) – The Griffon String Quartet’s recent Children’s Concerts, based on the picture book, Because, by New York Times best-selling author Mo Willems, were massively successful in bringing classical music to youth in Door County and Green Bay. The book tells the story of how the works of Beethoven and Schubert deeply influenced the life and future musical career of a young girl who happened to attend a concert in place of her sick uncle.
The first performance, on November 11, was for students at Webster Elementary School in Green Bay, with more than 100 children who were captivated by the music and story. The kids even spontaneously sang along when violinist Roy Meyer played the familiar tune of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” The event was coordinated with Webster music teacher Kevin Flogel, who also read the book to the children during the concert.
The quartet played again at the Door County Library in Sturgeon Bay on the morning of November 12. Sixty children and adults attended while Youth Services Librarian Beth Lokken read the story with the music accompaniment. Later the same day, the musicians moved to the Brown County Library’s Pine Street Branch in Green Bay, and Allison Felchlin read to more than 75 children and adults.
The music, selected by violinist Roy Meyer, included portions of works by Beethoven, Schubert, Mozart, Dvořák, and Hillary Purrington. In addition to Roy Meyer, musicians included violinist Elliot Lee, violist Willie McLellan, and cellist Alexa Muhly. The complete Door County Library performance recording can be found on the Door County Library Facebook page.
One of the most vibrant and engaging quartets of their generation, the Griffon String Quartet was formed in the fall of 2018 as a collaboration between Midsummer’s Music and the Fine Arts Institute at East High in Green Bay. The GSQ is a groundbreaking project to enrich the lives of children and adults throughout Northeast Wisconsin through concerts, workshops, and music education outreach. Extraordinary musicians who have performed with orchestras and ensembles around the globe, they are equally dedicated to music education and inspiring the next generation of music lovers. Each member of the Griffon String Quartet has advanced degrees and significant professional experience, both as educators and performers, and they have been recognized for “their youthful vigor, which is absolutely infectious!”
Midsummer’s Music was co-founded in 1990 by Jim and Jean Berkenstock, long-time Door County summer residents and principal orchestral players with the Lyric Opera of Chicago. What began as two concerts among friends has become one of the Midwest’s most anticipated chamber music series, bringing thousands of chamber music enthusiasts from around the globe to the magical Door County Peninsula.
For more information visit www.midsummersmusic.com.