The gazebo in Josiah White Park in Jim Thorpe was the scene of the debut performance of a new musical group on Saturday afternoon during the Fall Foliage Festival, being held there and throughout the rest of the downtown and Broadway area.
The new group is the Bach & Handel Ensemble, whose official name is "Beyond Bach." It is a subgroup of the Bach & Handel Chorale.
While the Bach & Handel Chorale focuses on the Baroque masters, the ensemble's focus is on American Music, so everything that it does has either been written by an American composer or by a foreign composer while they were here in the United States.
Right now there are eight members of the ensemble, and the they had to audition to get into the group. They are all members of the Bach & Handel Chorale.
Their music ranges from the 1600s all the way up into the mid 1950s. In between each number they have some "patter" where members tell their audience about the song that they are going to sing, what was going on at the time it was popular, and who composed it.
Some of the many songs that the ensemble presented on Saturday were: My Country, 'Tis of Thee; Home on the Range; Polly Wolly Doodle; Oh Susannah; and Dixie.
"Beyond Bach" has other events lined up for the future. They will be singing in Lehighton next year for the July 4th celebration there.
They will be back in the gazebo at the Fall Foliage Festival again next Saturday from noon to 2 p.m. If you like great harmony and Americana, be sure to stop by.