Saturday, September 26, 2009

Music on the Street

The Grove Street Path Station in Jersey City was not a place of any particular distinction or attraction until a recent renovation created a public square around the entrance. The square has become a center of civic life. On Friday nights, an arts scene has blossomed. Last night, Con Vivo, a chamber music group that plays in outdoor venues all over Jersey City, was playing as part of the regular Friday evening arts and crafts market. It was not an ideal setup as even the loudest pieces they were playing could not compete with the traffic and the fall temperatures were better suited for walking than serious attention to music. Yet it was a stunning place to be on a Friday night, after work. The joyous spirit of the musicians seemed to feed off the ever-changing street scene. They laughed when the wind blew over their music stands, and they chased the single sheets of music before they blew off. It reminded me what pleasure there is to be had in taking the world just as it is, loud, blustery, and full of tired people straining to hear anyway.

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