Met Orchestra Musicians Perform “Musical Read-Aloud” at Manhattan’s Fort Washington Public Library

Tuesday, April 12, 2017

Christopher Carroll / Local802, AFM

Maya Kremen / Geto & de Milly, Inc.
(212) 686-4551 /


MET Orchestra Musicians joined by NYC Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez, who read along to original composition for children and families

New York, New York, NY—Wednesday, April 12, 2017—At a free concert open to the public on Tuesday, April 11, 2017 at 3:30pm, members of the MET Orchestra Musicians visited The New York Public Library’s Fort Washington Branch to perform a “Musical Read-Along” of “Buzzard and Wren Have a Race,” from the book A Ring of Tricksters, by Virginia Hamilton and Icarus Swinebuckle by Michael Garland. The music was composed by Robert Miller, husband of MET Orchestra violinist Elena Barere. The books were read aloud to children and families by NYC Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez and MET Orchestra violinist Bruno Eicher.

This program was organized by the MET Orchestra Musicians, who are engaging with communities citywide, advocating on issues that touch the lives of all New Yorkers, including a well-rounded cultural education, funding for arts organizations and artists, access to live music and increased diversity in the arts.

“We’re very excited to play for kids and families at Fort Washington Library!” said MET Orchestra cellist Kari Docter, “As a parent and a member of the orchestra, I can say that music, the arts and advocacy go hand-in-hand. At a time when support for the arts in our schools and communities is constantly under threat, we must find new ways to introduce young people to the power of live music and the art that helps them to learn and thrive—and to support the role that music and art play as part of a healthy, inclusive and positive society.”

“New Yorkers in Uptown Manhattan know that music and the arts are vital part of our heritage and essential to strong communities,” said NYC Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez, “I applaud the MET Orchestra Musicians for using their talent and musicianship to help our young children experience the power of live music, and for supporting our libraries and the work they do every day.”

“It is not uncommon to find children singing and dancing during storytime at the Fort Washington Library,” said Fort Washington Library manager Kassandre Innocent. “But it is a distinct privilege to work with the talented members of MET Orchestra Musicians and Councilmember Rodriguez on this unique program that wonderfully combines the magic of music with a love of reading and nurtures the creative minds of our young patrons.”

“Music and the arts play a vital role in our neighborhoods and our city,” said Tino Gagliardi, President, Local 802 American Federation of Musicians. “The MET Orchestra Musicians are not only musicians, they are New Yorkers—parents, teachers and community advocates who are active in the civic life of our city and who care passionately about the making sure our children have access to the arts.”

This performance is part of the MET Orchestra Musicians’ new initiative to use live music to support communities, advocate for important social issues and engage with New Yorkers of all ages throughout the City. On Thursday, April 6, MET Orchestra Musicians performed the “Musical Read-Along” program for Pre-K students at Harlem’s PS185/Early Childhood Discovery and Design. On Thursday, March 12, they performed Prokofiev’s children’s classic Peter and the Wolf, narrated by NYC Councilmember Daniel Garodnick (District 4), at the Rudolf-Steiner School on Manhattan’s Upper East Side in support of the environmental advocacy organization Our Children’s Trust.


Image Captions

01_NYC Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez reads Icarus Swinebuckle with MET Orchestra Musicians at Fort Washington Public Library

02_MET Orchestra cellist Kari Docter introduces children at Fort Washington Public Library to the cello

03_MET Orchestra violinist Katherine Fong describes the bow of a violin to children at Fort Washington Public Library

04_MET Orchestra violinist Katherine Fong gives a mini violin lesson to children at Fort Washington Public Library

About the Met Orchestra Musicians

The MET Orchestra Musicians are dedicated to providing their fans with a beautiful and immersive experience of opera, in equal parts engaging audiences in behind-the-scenes activities and opening an unprecedented channel of communication between performer and listener. Members of the MET Orchestra are sought-after teachers, comprising large portions of the music faculties of all the major universities and conservatories in the New York metropolitan area. Former students of MET Orchestra Musicians can be found in virtually every performing arts organization in the country. In addition, a number of MET Orchestra Musicians dedicate time to working with younger students, both privately and by assuming leading roles in youth orchestras and pre-college programs.

Individual members of the orchestra have traveled to all corners of the Earth, in equal parts performing and engaging underserved audiences. MET Orchestra Musicians have performed fundraisers for local public schools and engaged in outreach efforts including teaching in Haiti and Central America and bringing South African students to New York for intensive study. In addition, MET Orchestra Musicians are coaches and teachers at some of the world’s leading summer music festivals, including the Verbier Festival, where the coaching faculty has been comprised of MET Orchestra Musicians since its founding in 2000.

About the Associated Musicians of Greater New York, Local 802, AFM

Local 802, AFM is one of the largest local unions of professional musicians in the world, working to promote artistic excellence and strengthen New York City’s vibrant arts community by advocating for fair treatment and compensation of hardworking musicians and performers. They seek to organize a community of all musicians and aspiring musicians whiling advocating for the preservation and creation of opportunities for live musical performance, promoting recording and film scoring in New York City, increasing children’s access to live music and high-quality music education, advancing the vital role music plays in our communities, and ensuring that the musicians who are essential to New York City’s economy and cultural life are able to continue to live and work here.