The festival is modeled after France's "Fê_te de la Musique," first held in 1982 in Paris and an annual event throughout the country ever since. Other cities which have followed suit with their own "Fê_tes" include Rome, Berlin, Barcelona, Toronto, Buenos Aires, Beijing, Tokyo and Sydney.
John Corigliano, who joined the New York festival's advisory board after experiencing it in Europe, says, "Make Music New York is a grand celebration honoring all kinds of music. I witnessed such an event last year in Amsterdam, and it brought the entire city together in a wonderful way. Just think how fantastic it will be when it takes place in the greatest city in the world, New York!"
To date, 87 community groups, twelve Business Improvement Districts, and hundreds of individual artists, both amateurs and professionals, have signed on to produce free concerts on sidewalks, parks, closed streets and community gardens.
Large-scale events are planned throughout the city. Six blocks of Bedford Avenue in Williamsburg will be devoted to the festival, with a symphonic indie-rock show at McCarren Pool in the evening. Other events include an R&B stage in front of the State Office Building in Harlem, a lunchtime concert at Lincoln Center and a cluster of musical block parties in Queens called "Make Music: Jamaica Funk Style."
Other concerts will feature genres from Turkish religious music to underground hip-hop.
Festival organizers are seeking musicians of all levels and experience to perform at locations around the city. Interested performers should sign up at www.makemusicny.org/takepart.php or call 1-917-779-9709 before May 1.