Caroga Arts’ Backyard Music Festival

A Fourth of July Virtual Concert Supporting Caroga Arts

Virtual Orchestra to perform 1812 Overture

With many Fourth of July activities cancelled across the nation, Caroga Arts is excited to bring the Caroga Lake Music Festival experience to people’s backyard in celebration of Independence Day. The Fourth of July Virtual Concert will feature a variety of world-class artists and musical selections from jazz to classical to ragtime to folk - and of course some classic July Fourth music.

For the first time ever, thirty musicians from Caroga Arts Ensemble will perform virtually together to play the iconic Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture, arranged by Caroga Arts artist Josh Henderson, and “Echoes Ring”, a piece commissioned in honor of MLK50 and composed by our very own Artistic Director Kyle Barrett Price.

Taylor Swift’s Music Director and renowned jazz pianist David Cook will perform a jazz segment during the virtual concert. David has music directed notable artists including Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson, *NSYNC, KESHA, Halsey and Emmy/Oscar/Tony winner Ben Platt.

Making his first Caroga Arts appearance, Ethan Uslan is a ragtime pianist and 3-time winner of the World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing Contest. As a little sneak peak of what’s coming to Sherman’s in 2021, Ethan will play some music by Scott Joplin in celebration of the Sherman’s Centennial next year.

A Vocal Quartet made up of CLMF Artists and opera singers Nicole Heinen, Logan Contreras, Jazimina MacNeil, and Armando Contreras will sing a heavenly arrangement of “America the Beautiful.”

Longtime CLMF Artists Andy Liang and Aaron Schwartz are taking the challenge of playing the notoriously difficult Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever” for two violins arranged by B. Dukov.

The talented vocalists and multi-instrumentalists of the Saunders Family Band from Canada Lake will also join for a performance of “This Land Is Your Land.”

The Backyard Music Festival is a fundraising event to support Caroga Arts’ continued efforts to revitalize local culture, business, and life by providing unique experiences through collaborative performances, community engagement and education. All donations made to Caroga Arts between now and September 30, 2020 will be doubled, thanks to a generous matching gift of up to $10,000 from Pat Lowry and Jim Hopkins.

The event will also introduce the “Play It Forward Caroga Arts Challenge,” a fun and interactive way to show your support for Caroga Arts. Participants can make a donation to take the challenge and post a video of their creative making (playing music, dancing, crafting, cooking, reading poetry, etc.) on social media and inviting others to take the challenge.

Caroga Arts is also exploring possibilities of screening the concert for a limited number of audiences or cars (as a drive-in option) at Sherman’s subject to CDC guidelines.

The Backyard Music Festival is free and accessible to all with donations greatly appreciated. The Live stream will take place on July 3, 2020 at 5pm EDT on the Caroga Arts YouTube channel and Facebook page. If you miss the live stream, you can still watch it later on both platforms and on our website at

Full Lineup:

David Cook, jazz pianist

Ethan Uslan, Ragtime pianist

Saunders Family Band

Vocal Quartet - “America the Beautiful”

Nicole Heinen, soprano

Jaszmina MacNeil, mezzo

Logan Contreras, mezzo

Armando Contreras, baritone

Violin Duet - “Stars and Stripes Forever” arr. B. Dukov

Andy Liang, violin

Aaron Schwartz, violin

“Virtual” Caroga Arts Ensemble

“1812 Overture” arr. Josh Henderson

“Echoes Ring”

Johnson Newspapers 7.1


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