Although fall was still a week away, strains of music associated with fall and the harvest were enjoyed at the Westlake Porter Public Library on September 18 as the Westlake-Westshore Arts Council (W-WAC) presented its fall program.
The program, Harvest Home, was performed by Sunday in the Park, a husband and wife duo. Karen Ellicott, clarinet and vocals, and Christopher Ellicott, guitar and vocals, are both accomplished musicians and professors at Baldwin Wallace University.
The Ellicotts began the program with “We Gather Together,” a 16th-century Dutch tune, followed by “Simple Gifts,” a 19th-century Shaker anthem. The titles might not be familiar, but the melodies were instantly recognizable.
Four catchy tunes, mostly for violin but adapted for clarinet and guitar, immediately followed. Next, two traditional 19th-century tunes, “Oh Shenandoah” and “Wayfaring Stranger,” were followed by a rousing chant of five tunes, including “Oh Susanna” and “She’ll be Comin’ Round the Mountain.”
The program ended with an animated rendition of “The Entertainer” by Scott Joplin. Karen gave the story behind each piece, adding informative and humorous anecdotes. Many of these “folk” songs were taught in elementary school, so they brought back memories for many viewers, and it was an added gift to learn their history.