SJSA Kicking Off 2013 Ruth “Sis” Frank Friday Night Encounters Concert Series


See all four concerts in the Sis Frank Concert series, which includes a performance by The Ahn Trio, for $100.

Inspired to honor co-founder and former director, the late Ruth “Sis” Frank, St. John School of the Arts officials created a special concert series this season.

“It’s called the Sis Frank Concert Series because Sis used to bring eight or nine different groups to St. John each year to perform,” said SJSA director Kim Wild. “She would bring down people who played music that she loved like jazz and classical. And everyone enjoyed coming out for those shows.”

Since Frank’s passing, the school has been offering special concerts and events, but Wild was ready to host a full series of concerts this winter season, she explained.

“We decided that as an arts school we should be bringing down as many groups as we can,” said Wild. “We knew some groups wanted to come back, so we decided to reach out to people who really loved the school and really loved Sis.”

First up in the concert series is New York City jazz pianist Garry Dial who will be performing with SJSA voice instructor Luba Dolgopolsky on Friday, January 4, at 8 p.m.

“Garry is an amazing jazz pianist and teacher in New York City and we’re so excited that he’s coming down and performing with our own Luba,” said Wild. “He was here years ago and we’re delighted that he’s coming back.”

The January 25 concert will feature the well-known and beloved sisters of The Ahn Trio, explained Wild.

“They are three lovely sisters who have played on St. John before,” said the SJSA director. “They’re classical musicians but they really cross over to different genres and that makes them edgy and exciting. And they’re beautiful women.”

Even for those non-classical music lovers out there, the March 29 event, when SJSA will feature its very first Faculty Concert, is not to be missed.

“Expect a lot of different things,” said Wild. “There will be some music, some movement and we’re going to have a special guest, which I’m not allowed to say anything about. It’s really a matter of showing off our talent and will give dance instructor Jude Woodcock a chance to try out her new hip.”

New York Empire Trio will wrap up the concert series on a distinctly high note on April 12.

“They came here last year and were fabulous,” said Wild. “We didn’t have a full house and it was such a shame. We really want people to hear them and that’s why we’re bringing them back.”

With cello, violin and piano, the New York Empire Trio plays classical music, but their style is nothing short of mesmerizing, Wild explained.

“They are definitely classical musicians, but the way they interpret the music, it really makes you just close your eyes and dance in your head,” she said. “Their music is captivating. They really bring something different to their music.”

All concerts start at 8 p.m. and are at SJSA. Tickets for the entire four concert series are available now for only $100. Individual tickets, $30 each, will be available after December 13.

“We’re only offering the series tickets now in order to ensure seating and offer lower pricing for those people who want it,” said Wild.

To order tickets, call the SJSA office at 779-4322 Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The school can accept Visa or Mastercard over the phone and will have the tickets waiting at the door.