Upcoming Events — Sayon Camara(Saturday 11/3), and many more!

Sayon Camara

November 3, 2023 @ 6:30 PM at WCCMA at Union Church

Join Sayon Camara and friends for a participatory drumming performance at WCCMA!

Join Sayon Camara and friends for a participatory drumming performance at WCCMA! Sayon Camara is a cultural ambassador for his people, the Malinke (or Mandingo), of the Sankaran region of Guinea. He is a keeper of generations of music that he loves to share, creating joy and carrying his culture forward in the world. Sayon is joined by Dave Kobrenski who is a long time participant in Malinke culture and music, Grant Ellerbeck who has played, studied and taught the drumming music of Guinea and Lev Camara who loves to dance. Together they will bring you to the heart of Sayon’s culture through drumming, fula flute, bolon, song, story and dance!

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THB’s Music Appreciation Hour/Questions & Improvisations

November 6, 2023 @ 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM at WCCMA at Union Church Hall

Musician & educator Taylor Ho Bynum will lead open sessions dedicated to introducing listeners to jazz and other forms of improvised music.

On the first and third Mondays of October and November, musician and educator Taylor Ho Bynum will lead open sessions dedicated to introducing listeners to jazz and other forms of improvised and creative music. The first hour will consist of listening to classic albums in their entirety, with introductory comments and post-listening discussion around the history and aesthetics of the recordings. The second hour will consist of musical and verbal dialogues prompted by audience questions, with THB performing solo and occasionally with invited guests. Attend in person in Claremont, or join us online via zoom (advanced registration required). The series kicks off on October 2 with “And His Mother Called Him Bill”, Duke Ellington’s tribute to his compositional partner Billy Strayhorn, and will conclude on November 20 with a live performance of Bynum’s collaborative duo with acclaimed drummer/composer Tomas Fujiwara. Registration for the first three sessions is sliding scale donation suggested at $10-50, with all proceeds going to support WCCMA, and sliding scale tickets for the November 20th concert.

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Dinuk Wijeratne Trio

November 11, 2023 @ 7:00 PM at Union Episcopal Church

Vivifying globally-inspired music effortlessly blending Classical, World, and Jazz. Compositions by award-winning composer Dinuk Wijeratne .

Vivifying globally-inspired music effortlessly blending Classical, World, and Jazz. Compositions by award-winning composer Dinuk Wijeratne. The Trio are Dinuk Wijeratne (piano, composer), Nick Halley (percussion, hand percussion), and Jon Sutters (upright bass, bass).

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Taylor Ho Bynum / Tomas Fujiwara Duo

November 20, 2023 @ 7:00 PM at WCCMA at Union Church

Musician & educator Taylor Ho Bynum will lead open sessions dedicated to introducing listeners to jazz and other forms of improvised music.

Over the past thirty years, over twenty-five albums and hundreds of gigs in dozens of different bands, drummer Tomas Fujiwara and cornettist Taylor Ho Bynum have developed one of the deeper levels of creative communication in the contemporary music scene – in groups under Fujiwara’s leadership like Triple Double and Shizuko, ensembles led by Bynum including his Sextet, 9-tette, and PlusTet big band, and collective projects like Illegal Crowns (with Mary Halvorson and Benoit Delbecq) and the Thirteenth Assembly (with Halvorson and Jessica Pavone). Throughout this history, they’ve maintained their duo, which has released four albums: “True Events” (2007), “Stepwise” (2010), “Through Foundation” (2014), and “Notice” (2022). Described as “a ubiquitous presence in the New York scene…an artist whose urbane writing is equal to his impressively nuanced drumming,” (Point of Departure) Brooklyn-based Tomas Fujiwara is an active player in some of the most exciting music of the current generation. He leads the bands Triple Double, 7 Poets Trio, and Tomas Fujiwara & The Hook Up; is a member of the collective trio Thumbscrew (with Mary Halvorson and Michael Formanek); has a collaborative duo with Taylor Ho Bynum; and engages in a diversity of creative work with Anthony Braxton, John Zorn, Mary Halvorson, Tomeka Reid, Matana Roberts, Taylor Ho Bynum, Nicole Mitchell, Ben Goldberg, Amir ElSaffar, Benoit Delbecq, and many others. In 2021, he won the Downbeat Critics Poll for Rising Star Drummer, and premiered two suites of new music as part of his Roulette Residency: “You Don’t Have to Try” (with Meshell Ndegeocello) and “Shizuko.” His most recent work is “Dream Up,” a suite for percussion quartet, commissioned by NYSCA and Roulette Intermedium. “Drummer Tomas Fujiwara works with rhythm as a pliable substance, solid but ever shifting. His style is forward-driving but rarely blunt or aggressive, and never random. He has a way of spreading out the center of a pulse while setting up a rigorous scaffolding of restraint…A conception of the drum set as a full-canvas instrument, almost orchestral in its scope.” (New York Times)

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Benefit for a Bright Future with Pinkas and Halloran

Join us on October 30th, at 3pm, at the West Claremont Center for Music and the Arts (WCCMA) as we present a special concert featuring pianist, Sally Pinkas, and clarinetist Jan Halloran. This fundraiser event supports the construction and realization of West Claremont Center for Music and the Arts’ new, permanent home, in downtown Claremont, NH. The concert itself takes place in the parish hall, at Union Episcopal Church, 133 Old Church Road, Claremont, NH. The WCCMA’s new downtown home is not just a home for the WCCMA, but a home for the incubation, growth and celebration of the arts, for Claremont. As we all know, the arts have a special way of fostering community growth by creating connections within the community. We need you, as members of our community, to help us make this new home a reality, as we build for a bright future!

There are a very limited number of seats available in the concert hall, itself (for folks who are vaccinated, and masked). Online viewing passes are also available. Tickets are $110/per person, for in-hall seating, and $40/per person, for online viewing access, to support the arts center. Tickets are available through https://fallbenefit2021.eventbrite.com. Each ticket purchaser (in-hall as well as online viewers) receives a special swag bag, as well as a private tour of the pre-construction arts center, and the vision ahead for the space.

We are also delighted to share that all funds raised from this event (and all events supporting the WCCMA Homecoming Capital Campaign) will be matched at 50% by the Jack and Dorothy Byrne Foundation. This means that the generosity of your contribution is amplified by theirs, bringing us even closer to our goal.

About the Artists:

Praised for her “soulful intensity,” and renowned for her versatility, clarinetist Jan Halloran appears in an array of concert venues throughout New England. The Boston-based artist is Principal Clarinetist of both Boston Lyric Opera and Odyssey Opera and a member of the Grammy award-winning ensemble Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP), with whom she has premiered and recorded numerous new works. She is also a member of the Portland Symphony and a frequent guest artist with ensembles including the Boston Symphony and Pops, Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Boston Philharmonic, Rhode Island Philharmonic and Emmanuel Music. Ms. Halloran’s varied chamber music experiences include the recently formed Bass Clarinets Boston, who make their International Clarinet Association debut in July. She performs and tours with the Walden Chamber Players and has appeared with such notable chamber groups as Collage New Music and the Radius Ensemble. A devoted educator, Ms. Halloran is on the faculties of the Boston Conservatory at Berklee and Dartmouth College and maintains a private clarinet studio. Growing up outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Ms. Halloran studied clarinet with Thomas Thompson. She earned her BM at the Eastman School of Music and MM at Boston University, with Michael Webster, and furthered her clarinet studies with Thomas Martin.  Ms. Halloran’s recordings can be found on the BMOP Sound, Capstone, Telergy and Navona labels.

Following her London debut at Wigmore Hall, Israeli-born pianist Sally Pinkas has garnered universal acclaim as soloist and chamber musician. Among highlights are performances with the Boston Pops, the Aspen Philharmonia, New York’s Jupiter Symphony, and the festivals at Marlboro, Aspen, Rockport, Pontlevoy (France), Havana (Cuba) and HCMC Conservatory (Vietnam). In 2019 she made her solo debut with the Bandung Symphony in Indonesia, and appeared in recitals in Spain and Brazil. Pinkas tours regularly as member of the Hirsch-Pinkas Duo (with her husband pianist Evan Hirsch) and Ensemble Schumann, and with the Adaskin String Trio. Other recent collaborators include the Apple Hill String Quartet, Cuarteto Latinoamericano and the UK’s Villiers Quartet. Praised for her radiant tone and driving energy, Pinkas’ extensive discography includes music by Mozart, Schumann, Fauré, Debussy, Gaubert, Martinů, Shapiro, Pinkham and Wolff for the MSR, Centaur, Naxos, Toccata Classics and Mode labels. Her most recent CD release of Sonatas by Shostakovich and Bridge was hailed as “A mandatory purchase for all pianophiles: two major works, in performances of utter power… ideal melding of strength and emotional pliancy…” by Fanfare Magazine. She holds performance degrees from Indiana University and the New England Conservatory of Music, and a Ph.D. in Composition from Brandeis University. Pianist-in-residence at the Hopkins Center at Dartmouth College, she is Professor of Music at Dartmouth’s Music Department.

West Claremont Center for Music and the Arts is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. (Union Episcopal Church is the fiscal agent for WCCMA, which qualifies donations as tax deductible.) Union Church has donated space for WCCMA programming for many years – including for this important concert event. The building of this new home for the arts center, however, represents a major step in further solidifying the presence of the arts as a vital part of Claremont’s community. WCCMA was founded in 2008 as the Summer Concert Series at Union Church as an organization presenting outstanding musical performers, and the new space will allow programming for the community to continue to grow.

Program Preview:

Soundscapes for Clarinet and Piano

Jan Halloran, clarinet

Sally Pinkas, piano


Arabesque (1913)  Germaine Tailleferre (1892-1983)

Elegy: August 6, 1945 (2003) David Maslanka (b. 1943)

(from Eternal Garden: Four Songs for Clarinet and Piano)

Sonatine for Clarinet and Piano (2005) Valerie Coleman (b. 1970)


Pacific Serenade Op. 59 (1998, rev. 2002) Miguel Del Aguila (b. 1957)

I.   Con nostalgia

II.  Semplice

III. Theme

IV.  Recitando  

Sonata for Clarinet and Piano (1941-1942) Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990)


Andantino— Vivace e leggiero