Why We Love Libraries

We at Make Music New York have a deep appreciation for libraries and the many benefits they provide their community. They bring a focus on learning and face-to-face interaction, and provide a center in which a neighborhood or community can ground itself. They provide means for low-income young adults and seniors alike to access the internet.

Overall, public libraries provide services, access to the arts for all, and a space that few other community centers provide, all in the name of a love and respect for the arts. As we mentioned in a previous blog post, we are proud to partner with public libraries throughout the five boroughs to bring unique performances to the communities supported by those libraries.

Image courtesy of Curbed

100+ BPM

On of the more notable library activations for Make Music New York came back in 2014, on the front steps of the Brooklyn Public Library. NPR commissioned a piece from Sunny Jain, founder of Brooklyn-based band Red Baraat, “that would kick off the season in massive, marching-band style.” Jain wrote 100+ BPM, a reference both to the tempo of the piece and to the core goal of the performance: “Brooklyn Public Music.”

All brass players and percussionists were welcome to participate, and almost 350 musicians came out to perform the piece! Professional drum lines, community marching bands, jazz musicians, samba musicians, and tons of amateur musicians came out to play! With hours of fun music-making and positivity, 100+ BPM ended a successful event for NPR, BPL, and Make Music New York.

NPR even put together a video recap of the event:


Performing at a library

Not all library events have to be that extensive! 100+ BPM brought a huge group of people together, but library communities come in all shapes and sizes – so do their events! We’re always looking for great ideas for library performances; they can be as small as solo acts, or involve an entire community.

We’re always looking for more performers – if you feel strongly about performing at your local library, we can help make that happen. Register for Make Music New York 2018 here – once you’ve create your profile, peruse the list of venues for that library!

Don’t see it there? Reach out to us at admin@makemusicny.org and we can help register them as a venue to make that performance happen! We want libraries to celebrate music in their communities with artists who live and breathe those communities.

And, as always, stay tuned to this blog for all the newest Make Music New York information!