Photographs by Stanley Johnson
With Mona Golub at the helm, the slogan for the Music Haven Concert Series is, “Traveling the world one concert at a time,” and the series kicked off its 25th anniversary season last month in Africa.
Not just any African band, either. Mokoomba hails from the isolated town of Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe, and their appearance in Schenectady’s Central Park was their first ever concert on American soil. And what a concert it was. led by vocalist Mathias Muzaza, Mokoomba was all-around terrific: great dancers, great singers and great players.
From Guinea in Northern Africa, the equally electrifying Kakande Quartet opened the show with a marvelously unique sound. The band is led by Famoro Dioubate, a master of the centuries-old balafon — a wooden xylophone developed in the 1300s in nearby Mali.
As Nippertown photographer declared, “One of the top Music Haven concerts ever!”
After taking a week’s hiatus for the Independence Day weekend, the Music Haven Concert Series returns to the Agnes Macdonald Music Haven in Schenectady’s Central Park on Sunday evening, when Celtic-American fiddler Eileen Ivers takes the globe-trotting series to Ireland. Opening the show at 7pm will be folk trio Annalivia, featuring Liz Simmons, Flynn Cohen and Lissa Schneckenburger. Admission is FREE. Rain site for the concert is Proctors in Schenectady.