CITIZENS’ VOICE #28 -A Celebration of AMERICANA…simply outstanding!
By: Al Zucaro
If ever a person or place merits the proverbial ‘key to the city’, Lynn University, its President, Dr. Kevin Ross, and the entire university staff do….What an incredible experience they provided to all of us here in the city of Boca Raton. Thank you….
Being on the world stage for the Presidential Debate would never have been accomplished without their courageous actions. Being on the world stage because of this event has elevated Boca Raton to international status with dignity, confidence, and virtually without incident.
Kudos must also be given to the city administration, the police and fire personal and the city council/CRA for bringing the event to the people in the Mizner Park Amphitheater on the actual evening of the debate. Well Done…..
But perhaps the most unexpected event took place two week after the debate….On Sunday evening, November 4, the Leadership Society of Lynn University, in cooperation with the city of Boca Raton, conducted a free concert for the public to say THANK YOU to the community. Imagine they are saying thank you to us….amazing.
A CELEBRATION of AMERICANA featured the Lynn University’s Conservatory of Music Orchestra under the direction of Dr. Jon Robertson and performing musical selections demonstrating a cross-section of America’s culture and diversity. Selections included jazz, country, Broadway musicals and even a breathtaking rendition of Superman’s March, highlighting their almost superhuman effort of the past year.
Also performing to the crowd’s delight were four outstanding vocalists; to wit: Neil Nelson, baritone, Kristen DiNonno, soprano, Brian Ricci, tenor and Nadege Bellande Robertson, mezzo-soprano. All were terrific but a special shout out to Ms. Robertson for a ‘hot’ rendition of the classic song, “Fever”, one of my all-time favorites.
No concert celebrating Americana would be complete without a salute to our nation’s armed forces as well a salute to the patriotic heritage and history of our great land. This concert was no exception. Renditions of America the Beautiful and God Bless America were designed to inspire the crowd and to set the stage for the fireworks finale by Zambelli, truly a delightful surprise….
Kudos also must be awarded to those sponsors and contributors who, with their generosity, made this experience possible. Sponsoring the event was the Len Chamber Charitable Trust, Sanford and Marion Goldstein Trustees. Also sponsoring the event was PNC Bank with a generous corporate sponsorship. These organizations provided hundreds of citizens a wonderful evenings under the stars, an evening that should not be easily forgotten.
Lynn University continues to demonstrate its community participation. The tag line associated with the event is “When talent meets inspiration, the results are extraordinary.” This is oh so very true.
Boca Raton’s inspirational resources are significant. In the downtown we have a world class amphitheater that now seems to be reaching its stride. We have a cultural arts center that has the capacity to be world class but is so very underutilized at this time and we have a willing local government ready to take their bows on the world stage.
Also in our community are a myriad of other educational and cultural venues. Before Boca Raton can really become a significant international business destination, we need to extend our hand in friendship to other global participants. We need to demonstrate with culture and with the arts that the world is welcome here. Events like this Celebration of Americana and the Brazilian festival are good a start.
Culture always precedes commerce. That is a given. The city council, in this year’s goals setting session, committed to the advancement of the thought. Management has been tasked to establish a “Sister City” program this fiscal year. That would be a good thing….However, since the goal setting session, there has been little news on this item. It is essential that the council continue to advance this as a strategic objective.
Councilwoman Scott is the energy behind this effort. She needs to get out front on this and make her presence known inside the national organization of sister cities and she need to participate with the world community at their locations in Miami and in Atlanta. Between these two world class cities, most of the world’s nations have diplomatic posts. These are good places to start….
The world is at our doorstep….we need to invite them in….