’Tis the season for free summer concerts.
Singer-songwriter Tony Travis performed a free concert at the Shore Road Park gazebo on June 7, thanks to Shore Road Park Conservancy and Sing For Hope, a group that installs custom-painted pianos in parks across the city. Anyone is free to play the instruments, but the conservancy has organized a series of free concerts to let people know the piano is there.
“It’s a pleasure to get out and play for the people and announce to them that [the piano] is there for them,” said Travis. “It’s a mix of who’s terrific and who’s just having fun,” he said.
Alex Rud, who was on a date with his girlfriend, stopped to watch Travis that night. “It had a nice community environment, which was exciting,” he said. “It was a great place, near the ocean, and the weather was nice.”
The concert was completely free, and is just one of six shows sponsored by the Shore Road Park Conservancy.
Linda Allegretti, the founder of the conservancy was delighted with Travis’ performance. “It was spectacular,” she said, “one of the best concerts we’ve had, it was a riot.”
Something that both Travis and Rud noticed was that it was a predominantly older crowd Sunday evening.
In contrast, the lineup for the June 11 concert featured young pianists, where the oldest performer was just 15 years old.
But part of Sing For Hope’s mission is to spread music and bring together community members of all ages.
“It brings art to the community,” said Stephanie Martinez, director of youth arts at Sing For Hope. “Art is for everyone, regardless of background, finances, and age,” she said.
Allegretti agreed, saying, “It’s just to bring the community together in a lovely way.”
The conservancy has four more concerts planned at the gazebo:
• June 12 at 7 pm — Maru Carmosino, playing the American Song Book.
• June 13 at 5 pm — Vincent Merola, a popular songwriter.
• June 14 at 6 pm — Gregory Post, a classical musician and composer.
• June 20 at 6:30 pm — Fumiyo Narita, a classical musician.