2001-08-18 / Columnists

Notes From The High C’s By Sharon Gabriel

It’s hard to believe that the last Sunset Picnic Concert of the season will be held this Sunday, August 26, at Ft. Tilden. That being said, the concert season will be ending with a bang. We are all in for something different, "The Sounds of Brazil", featuring Deborah Watts.

The wonderfully rich music of Brazil, the mambo, tango and samba all make you sway to the beat, and it all started a long time ago… in the 1500’s, when Brazil was discovered by the Portuguese who then intermarried with the Native Americans and African slaves who lived there. Each group brought their own music and a blending of these different styles, the rhythmic power and sensuality of African music along with the conventional music of Europe formed "Brazilian" music which they called "ginga" (swing). It is this unique blend of music that you will hear on Sunday.

We are very fortunate to have Deborah Watts with us. She is a native, born in a small town just hours from Rio de Janeiro, and she grew up surrounded by the beautiful music of her country. With a beautiful voice and excellent pitch, Deborah always wanted to sing but she first received her degree in pharmacy from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and she became a pharmacist and came to New York to pursue her profession, never having the nerve to actually get up on a stage and sing. However, she eventually met her husband-to-be, John Watts a pianist, composer and lover of Brazilian music and her future was decided. They both left their jobs and turned to their first love, music. Their mutual passion for Brazilian music is what you will hear today.

The RMAC would like to express their thanks to everyone who has attended our Summer Picnic Concerts, enjoyed the music and possibly won a raffle. Your interest and enthusiasm for what we do, will keep us coming back with more each year.

In that regard, have you thought about becoming a member of the RMAC? Your membership will help us to continue with our programs. Additionally, would you like to participate in planning our programs? If you would, you are invited to attend our next "Open Meeting" which will take place on Wednesday, September 5, 7:30 p.m. at The Beach Club. At that meeting we will be discussing our ongoing programs and most specifically, the Fall Festival which will take place just two weeks later on Saturday and Sunday, September 22 and 23.

Our Festival this year is moving along many different events. Most specifically, this year we will be presenting the Long Island Reptile Museum who will bring many retiles and handlers and they have planned several shows during both days. When not performing, the reptiles will be available to view and the handlers will be happy to answer any questions the adults and children may have. We are hoping to have special bleachers set up for the shows. The garden clubs will again be set up in a beautiful tent and the food will be abundant so bring along your appetite. Speaking about food, we need someone to assist us with the coffee and bagel breakfast that is planned each day for the vendors as they set up their exhibits. If you would like to help please come to the September 5 meeting or call the RMAC to volunteer. Many volunteers are always needed for the Festival and we hope we can count on your support to help us make the weekend a smashing success.

Deborah Watts with her husband John Watts will perform at "The Sounds of Brazil" concert on Sunday, August 26.

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