A performance by members of the Baroque Orchestra of New Jersey (BONJ) will launch NJIT’s next Technology and Society Forum series, a celebration of artistic creativity and exploration of key social issues. BONJ will perform on Feb. 6, 2:30 – 4:30 p.m. in the Jim Wise Theatre on the NJIT campus. The public is invited to attend the free concert.Program selections will include Arrival of the Queen of Sheba by Handel, Symphony 25 by Mozart and Mark Twain and the General, a chamber opera with music by Dr. Robert W. Butts, who founded BONJ in 1996 and is the group’s conductor and music director. Among the BONJ members performing will be Tamara Gund, violinist and professor in NJIT’s Department of Chemistry and Environmental Science. Jay M. Kappraff, associate professor in the university’s Department of Mathematical Sciences, will also join the group on violin.
BONJ and its founder have recently received significant recognition. Butts was awarded a special 2011 citation from The American Prize for Excellence in Music Education, Enrichment and Outreach, and BONJ was named one of the top three U.S. community orchestras.
BONJ originally specialized in the music of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: the Baroque and Classical eras. Today, it performs a wide variety of symphonic, chamber and operatic classical music from all periods. BONJ is also proud to premiere new music by contemporary composers.
Initially performing at the historic Darress Theatre in Boonton, the orchestra subsequently became the ensemble in residence at Grace Episcopal Church in Madison. In 2008, BONJ moved to a new auditorium for its larger concerts, Dolan Hall at the College of Saint Elizabeth in Convent Station.
In 2003, BONJ inaugurated its free annual Family Concert to encourage young people and families to enjoy the orchestra concert experience. To foster the development and recognition of classical music students, BONJ sponsors the Pearl and Julius Young Rising Stars Music Competition. Winners of the competition, and other young musicians, have the opportunity to play with the orchestra.
BONJ offered its first Summer Festival of Baroque Music at Grace Church in 2006. The week-long festival, which has become an annual event, offers a variety of musical and related performances. Concerts are now given at both Grace Church and Dolan Hall.
Co-sponsors: NJIT Technology and Society Forum Committee, Albert Dorman Honors College, Sigma Xi.
For more information about attending the concert, contact Jay Kappraff, firstname.lastname@example.org, 973-596-3490 or visit the NJIT Technology and Society Forum on the Web at http://tsf.njit.edu. Previous Forum presentations are available at http://itunes.njit.edu; search for “Technology and Society Forum.”