Culture in brief: Ed Alstrom, Yankee organist, debuts new work
Composer Ed Alstrom will conduct and accompany his new work “Purple Dusk at the Margins — an Uncommon Ordinary” on Sunday, June 24, 6:30 p.m., at Central Presbyterian Church, 46 Park St.
Alstrom also announces two other career events: undertaking a joint venture with The Continuo Arts Foundation of Summit, and the release of Alstrom's first-ever published anthem for Shawnee Press and Hal Leonard Publishing.
The work is a seven-movement cantata based on the Mass form, with texts by Fanny Crosby, Laurel Chamberland, the eccentric Victorian poet Digby Dolben, and Alstrom himself. Much of the original music within is jazz-flavored and inspired by 1970's icons such as McCoy Tyner, Chick Corea, and Herbie Hancock. The core of the choir is Alstrom's unit at Central Presbyterian, where he is Music Director.
Alstrom, a Westminster Choir College graduate, has played keyboards with Herbie Hancock, Chuck Berry, Bette Midler, Dion, Leonard Bernstein, Odetta, Stanley Jordan, Chubby Checker, John Lloyd Young, Rick Derringer, Al Kooper, Ronnie Spector, Uncle Floyd, Steely Dan, Phoebe Snow, Eddie Brigati, Darlene Love, Paul Shaffer, Buster Poindexter, Levon Helm, Zubin Mehta, Bettye Lavette, and many others.
He has also played many shows both on and off-Broadway, has hosted radio shows on WFDU in NJ, and was a Back Stage Bistro Award Winner for Outstanding Excellence in Cabaret in NYC.
In addition to playing for local houses of worship, Alstrom is in his 15th year as Weekend Organist at the organist at Yankee Stadium.
His new piece for choir and jazz band will be performed by Montclair resident Diane Moser, who recently debuted her new CD "Birdsongs" on piano; Mike Richmond on bass; Don Guinta on drums; Dave Arndt on trumpet, and others.
Admission to the concert is free; a free-will offering will be taken.