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Lunch and Listen to Monday Music at Alice S. Millar Chapel

February 25, 2009 | by Judy Moore
Video produced by Matt Paolelli
"Monday Music at Millar" draws music lovers from campus and throughout the community.

EVANSTON, Ill. --- "Monday Music at Millar," a free monthly music performance series held at Northwestern University's Alice S. Millar Chapel, is an innovative way to engage community members in the chapel's musical programs. It also provides a tranquil place to unwind from life's stresses.

The upcoming performances on March 2, April 6, May 4 and June 1 will complete the 2008-09 concert series. All of the "Monday Music at Millar" monthly performances are held from 12:15 to 12:45 p.m. The concerts are free and open to the public. Attendees may bring a sack lunch to eat inside the chapel during the midday programs.

"We thought it would be nice to present this musical oasis at the start of every month, not only to feature talented artists, but to bring people into the building," said Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music faculty member Stephen Alltop, director of music at Alice Millar Chapel. "It's such a beautiful space during the day and the acoustics seem to shine like the room itself."

The program of monthly concerts was launched in Fall 2008. It was initially created to show off the recently renovated 100-rank Aeolian Skinner organ in Alice Millar Chapel.

The 720-seat chapel also is distinguished by its colorful stained-glass windows and a 151-foot spire.

Most of the performers are current or former Northwestern students, but guest musicians are also invited to perform. Variety is evident in the monthly musical selections. Most performances include the organ in some way, but other instruments, such as the violin, viola, trumpet and harp have also been featured.

"Monday Music at Millar" typically draws around 40 people, varying from Northwestern students and faculty to Evanston and North Shore residents.

Program planning is underway for the next academic year's "Monday Music at Millar" series. Margaret Wilson, the program coordinator, has begun searching for individuals and groups to perform. A few of next season's performers will include soprano Hannah Dixon, organist Christine Kraemer and Kristin and Tracy Figard, a sister duo who play organ, piano, harpsichord, viola and violin. Wilson also hopes to feature a jazz performance and a Northwestern student a cappella group during the 2009-10 concert series. Next season's performance dates have been set for Oct. 5, Nov. 2, Dec. 7, Feb. 1, March 1, April 5 and May 3.

The Alice S. Millar Chapel and Religious Center was built in 1962 and designed by the architectural firm of Jensen and Halstead of Chicago. It was the gift of Foster G. McGaw, a University trustee, and his wife, Mary. The chapel was named in honor or Mr. McGaw's mother, Alice S. Millar McGaw.

The Evanston campus chapel is located at 1870 Sheridan Road and the series of programs is sponsored by the Alice S. Millar Religious Center and Chapel.

For more information on "Monday Music at Millar," visit the Alice S. Millar Chapel Web site at http://www.northwestern.edu/chaplain/purpose.html.

Topics: People, Campus Life