Tuesday, 28 January 2020 14:28

Melodies in the Museum

Written by  Megan Sarnacki
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Melodies in the Museum Courtesy Photo

Say farewell to the snowflakes outside and spend your Sunday afternoons basking in the warmth of classical music this winter. Presented at the Cook Auditorium on Sundays at 2 p.m., the Grand Rapids Art Museum produces the Sunday Classical Concert Series as a way for attendees to witness up-close performances of world-renowned musicians. 

“Set amidst the beautiful architecture and atmosphere of the Grand Rapids Art Museum, concerts are held in the museum’s auditorium because of its relaxing and comfortable setting,” said Elizabeth Payne, communications manager at the GRAM.

While the series started out with more humble beginnings, it has now grown a dedicated and loyal fan base. 

“The Sunday Classical Concert Series began modestly in the fall of 2008,” Payne said. “Today, the concerts attract hundreds of guests on Sunday afternoons during the fall and winter. Held as a favorite for many of GRAM’s visitors and members, guests often love attending multiple concerts in the series.”

Among the lineup of its 10 performances, the Sunday Classical Concert Series in February will feature an Opera Grand Rapids Soloist; Ensemble Montage; trombonist Christopher Houlihan; and The Crispin Campbell Quartet. All GRAM members receive free admission to the concerts and nonmembers can enjoy the series free with the price of GRAM’s general admission ticket.

Once the concert is over, Payne encourages visitors to use this performance to fill their entire weekend with art by discovering the latest exhibits at the GRAM. 

“What’s particularly unique about the Sunday Classical Series at GRAM is that it combines the visual and performing arts. Visitors on Sunday afternoons can enjoy a live classical concert, and then head to the galleries to explore the works on view, including GRAM’s current exhibition, A New State of Matter: Contemporary Glass,” Payne said.

Accompanying A New State of Matter: Contemporary Glass, the GRAM also has curated a selection of art and design objects from its permanent collection, ranging from colorful still-life paintings to glass-shaded lamps. The concurrent exhibition, Looking (at•into•through) Glass, aims to showcase works of art that explores glass as a material one can look at, into and through. 

Because art is about connections, the GRAM’s main purpose for this concert series is to create relationships with the community and help visitors develop bonds with all artistic measures — whether it be walking through an exhibition or listening to a classical performance.

“GRAM’s mission is to connect people through art, creativity, and design, and in that spirit, the museum celebrates all forms of art,” Payne said. “This series also provides us with the wonderful opportunity to collaborate with musicians from local performing arts organizations in our city, including the Grand Rapids Symphony and Grand Rapids Opera.”

Grand Rapids Art Museum
101 Monroe Center St. NW, Grand Rapids
Sundays in February, 2 p.m.

Feb. 2: Opera Grand Rapids Soloist
Feb. 9: Ensemble Montage
Feb. 16: Christopher Houlihan, trombone
Feb. 23: The Crispin Campbell Quartet

Free for GRAM members. General admission for visitors.

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