Make Music Day to launch Ridgefield’s first Summer of Song

Photo of Alyssa Seidman

RIDGEFIELD — Main Street will soon be home to dozens of musical musings as local artists prepare for Make Music Ridgefield.

Starting June 21, the town will join more than 1,000 communities worldwide for the global celebration of music by offering a variety of performances throughout the day.

From Ballard Park to Keeler Tavern, residents will be able to listen and interact with nearly 30 participating musical groups and instructors all over town. All events are free and open to the public.

Attendants will be able to enjoy live music at Ballard Park, with performances by The Ridgefield Jazz Giants, Bach to Rock, School of Rock and The Five O’Clocks.

During the event, Lounsbury House and The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum will host programs “celebrating the language of music and the role it can play in enhancing creative expression,” according to a release.

From 2 to 3:30 p.m., Lounsbury will host violist Suzanne Corey-Sahlin and cellist Gunnar Sahlin of the Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra as Guild of Artists members Clarice Shirvell, Tina Phillips and Katushka Millones paint alongside them.

At the same time, the Aldrich will host members of the Western Connecticut State Youth Orchestra as they play a selection of classical music for children to listen to as they paint. Susie Buckley, a local photographer and Aldrich volunteer, will guide the children as they “paint the music.” Paint packs will be available for purchase at Sedona Art at 450 Main Street before and on the day of the event, but participants can also bring their own supplies.

The event is being produced by the Ridgefield Arts Council. And while this is the third time the town is celebrating Make Music Day, this year it will serve as the kick off to a new promotional initiative: Summer of Song.

Here’s what’s happening at Make Music Ridgefield

Gazebo Grooves, Ballard Park, 10:30 a.m.

Gong/Drum Circle, Ballard Park, 11:30 a.m.

The Ridgefield Jazz Giants, Ballard Park, noon

Compassionate Ridgefield leaf sale, Town Hall, noon

WMD2, Keeler Tavern, 12:45 p.m.

Bang the Can Poetry Jam, Ridgefield Library, 1 p.m.

Ukulele lessons with Juliette Axen, Toy Chest, 1 p.m.

William Knispel, Ridgefield Crossings, 1:30 p.m.

Bach to Rock Faculty Band, Ballard Park, 2 p.m.

Maggie Seligman, Keeler Tavern, 2 p.m.

Paint the Music, Lounsbury House, 2 p.m.

WCYO Paint the Music, The Aldrich, 2 p.m.

Music Learning Centers of Ridgefield & Danbury, Ridgefield Crossings, 2:15 p.m.

Chris Belden, Town Hall, 2:45 p.m.

Marko Katra and Kai Fozouni, Keeler Tavern, 3 p.m.

Sing-a-long with Barrett Jones & Trevor Gladwin, Ridgefield Library, 3 p.m.

Maggie Seligman, Tewes-CARES, 3 p.m.

WCYO, The Aldrich, 3 p.m.

Pete Wikul Jazz Band, Lounsbury House, 3:45 p.m.

School of Rock House Band, Ballard Park, 4 p.m.

The Ridgefield Jazz Giants, Keeler Tavern, 4 p.m.

Macklin Burke, Ridgefield Library, 4 p.m.

Mazer, Graham Dickenson SPIRIT Skate Park, 4 p.m.

Robust 7, Tewes-CARES, 4 p.m.

Brian Butler Quartet, Town Hall, 4 p.m.

Ridgefield Chamber Orchestra, Ridgefield Library, 5 p.m.

The 5 O'Clocks, Ballard Park, 6 p.m.

Angry O'Hara's, Keeler Tavern, 6 p.m.

Danbury Mad Hatter Barbershop Chorus and Blue Moon Quartet, Town Hall, 6 p.m.

Rohan Connally & Owen LoFaso, Mamanasco Beach Club, 7 p.m.

Absofunkinlutely, Keeler Tavern, 8 p.m.

A joint effort by the council, the Ridgefield Chamber of Commerce and the Economic & Community Development Commission, Summer of Song celebrates more than two months worth of programming that residents — and visitors — can expect this season.

The brochure boasts more than 80 event listings from CHIRP, the Playhouse, the Theater Barn and other venues taking place throughout the summer, providing a comprehensive look into the town’s cultural arts community.

Brochures are available for pickup at participating organizations and include a scanable QR code that provides digital access to the full calendar of events.

“This is the first time we’ve combined the nonprofit and for-profit worlds as a way to bring business into town and let people know what’s happening,” Ridgefield Arts Council Chair Jennifer DiLaura said. “We have this cultural designation, let’s use it.”

ECDC Chair Geoffrey Morris referred to the Summer of Song as “a visual highlight of everything Ridgefield has to offer.”

Recognizing the resiliency of local artists — many of whom continued to create despite the pandemic — COC Executive Director Sarah Grossman said the initiative would help keep money circulating within Ridgefield.

“Commerce in this town is so contingent on the arts community,” she said. “As a chamber we asked ourselves ‘how can we be an asset and aid to the town?’ We realized we needed to help further create this community (so) businesses would continue to thrive as they did before.”

First Selectman Rudy Marconi agreed. As he read off a laundry list of the town’s performing arts venues and cultural destinations — as well as all they have to offer — he said, “That’s what will bring this economy back, that’s what plants the seeds of growth for the future.”

For more information about Make Music Ridgefield website. For more information about Summer of Song visit its website.