The Freeport Community Concert Association, FCCA, announced on May 17 that it would host its final concert on June 1. For the last 71 years, the FCCA has been bringing studded Lincoln Jazz Center and Broadway performances to Freeport.
Unfortunately, according to president, Jill Kaplan, the decrease in attendance “sadly, no longer feasible to continue staging the concerts while still maintaining the high quality, affordable prices and varied artistry.”
Before completely closing its doors, the FCA is a hosting a gala finale that features Paragon Ragtime Orchestra performing traditional Ragtime and other early American favorites, accompanied by a silent Buster Keaton film at 8 p.m. on Saturday. The concert is held at the Performing Arts Center at Freeport High School. Tickets are available for $20 at the door on the night of the concert and $5 for students.
FCCA launched its first concert series in 1947, by organization founder, Ann Martin. Since then it has welcomed over 200 world-class artists in orchestral, classical, jazz, chamber music, dance that included performances from The Trapp Family Singers, Ballet Russe, Issac Stern, Frank Vignola and more.
“There were so many wonderful performances,” said Sara Josloff, FCCA administrator. “But a standout for me would be the exquisite dancers of the St. Petersburg Ballet Theatre.”
“Through the decades, we have been able to continue with the vision of our founders,” Kaplan shared. “I love that; we all do.”
According to Kaplan, it could have been easier to hire less experienced bands or book a series of tribute bands and host non-classical concerts, but it wasn’t true to the FCCA’s mission of bringing international professional artists at the top of their genre in classical, jazz and opera, Kaplam said.
“The best part is greeting the audience members and talking with them,” Kaplan said. “Many attendees only see each other at these concerts and it is this love of music that bonds us together. Our numbers may have gotten smaller, but the joyous enthusiasm remains gloriously strong.”