The Music of Colonial America

Date: Mar 9, 2014
Time: 3:00 PM
Location: Bernardsville Library

Ridley and Anne Enslow-webAnne and Ridley Enslow recreate the music of American history. Dressed in historically accurate clothing, they will play music of the American colonial period, using instruments appropriate to the period—an 18th-century violin for Ridley and hammered dulcimer for Anne. They sing in harmony and tell stories of the times that gave rise to the music.

Ridley Enslow began playing colonial American music more than 30 years ago while working at Morristown National Historical Park in New Jersey. He has made five albums with the noted balladeer Linda Russell and four with his wife, Anne. In addition, Ridley plays bluegrass with a group called “String Fever.”

In his “other” life, he is president of Enslow Publishers, Inc., which publishes educational books for children and teenagers. All of the Enslow’s CDs were conceived initially with educational purposes in mind—to provide an enjoyable history lesson, while also providing entertainment sophisticated enough for adults. Two of these recordings—Music of the American Colonies and Music for Abraham Lincoln—were named Notable Recordings by the American Library Association. The Lincoln CD also received the endorsement of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.

Anne Enslow began playing colonial music when she met her future husband. She played as a regular substitute on Broadway in the orchestra of The Secret Garden in 1992-1993. In her “other” life, she is executive editor of Harvard Health Publications’ special health reports, and she worked for many years as a correspondent at Newsweek. She does most of the duo’s research, which has included hours spent in the Library of Congress, Colonial Williamsburg, the Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center, historical societies and various archives. With rare exceptions, all of their music is drawn from original manuscripts, sheet music and songsters. And it is performed on instruments accurate to the period.

This is a free concert funded by the Friends of the Bernardsville Public Library. Children aged ten and up are also welcome. No sign-up is needed. Just come! Doors open at 2:45 pm.

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