By RA Monaco
Borrowing from an Urban Dictionary, the word ZAZZ is a quantifiable amount of something special—the higher the amount the more likely it is to be successful and awesome.
Lombard, IL – If you were East of the Sun and West of the Moon on Sunday afternoon you might have been at the Helen Plum Memorial Library to listen to music. Inspired by ideas about science and space, music was the Coda to end this year’s summer Sci-Fi reading program.
Collaborating to explore musical compositions that have been inspired by the skies, moon and beyond the stars, the ensemble ZAZZ, featuring pianist Gail Sonkin, drummer Greg Zaborkiniak, vocalist/clarinetist Deb Zelman, tenor saxophonist Ken O’Neil and bassist Julian Webb, crafted a musical montage of familiar melodies and standards specifically captured in the imaginations of composers and scientists.
Music is often used to tell a story and teach us about how others live. It is a way to understand past and present cultures as well as a way to imagine cultures we’ve never, in reality, known.
While the correlations between music and math might have scared away a few high school students getting ready to return for another year of classes, the concert program featured melodies popular with both younger and more seasoned members of the community.
Themes from the movie Star Wars and standards like Fly Me to The Moon, How High the Moon and Stella By Starlight offered a universe of inter-generational entertainment—the program ideas and musical reflections were fun. The program was informative too.
Most importantly, Sunday’s music program was a way to carry forward ideas for summer science fiction readers and explain the paths creatively taken by others to the unknown.
For the Village of Lombard, the ZAZZ Concert was an excellent idea that deserved more promotion. The success of this program lies ahead in finding ways to connect the Village and the event—having signs around the library and a paragraph in a booklet does no service to the effort or creativity behind the program.
Instead of hiding the program in the basement auditorium on a beautiful day, put it on the rear patio outside the Library under an awning. Connect it to the beautiful gardens of Lilacia Park. Why compete with summer weather—make it part of the program.
In today’s digital age, social media is a cost efficient way to make a good idea inclusive for the entire community—invest in a publicist. Borrowing from an Urban Dictionary, the word ZAZZ is a quantifiable amount of something special—the higher the amount the more likely it is to be successful and awesome. The Helen Plum Library and staff needs to ZAZZ up promotion for their end of summer reading program…just saying.