CRANFORD, NJ – On Friday, Feb. 14, Cranford High School will celebrate Valentine’s Day with a fundraiser at the First Presbyterian Church on Springfield Avenue. The event, titled “Songs in the Key of Love,” will feature a performance by the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra.
All proceeds will go to the Cranford Schools Friends of Performing Arts, a parent-founded nonprofit organization that supports performing arts programming in Cranford public schools.
Christine Hoffman, a board member of the organization, said that arts expression is an important part of our children’s development.
“Cranford Schools Friends of Performing Arts is made up of parents who value our school district’s performing arts program and its teachers,” said Hoffman in a Feb. 10 email to LocalSource. “We feel teaching expression and communication through the arts is an important part of our children’s growth and maturation into whole, balanced, confident and educated adults.
“In the last couple of years,” she continued, “Cranford Schools Friends of Performing Arts has bought the music department a conductor’s stand, a cello rack for orchestra and a vibraphone for band. We also have given money to support acting and band and orchestra trips, and an educational visit for choir from Yale’s world-class Whiffenpoofs.”
Hoffman noted that the organization has also helped the middle school’s band program purchase much-needed instruments through an Investors Bank grant.
Slated to perform on Friday evening are New Jersey Symphony Orchestra concertmaster Brennan Sweet and cellist Christine Sweet, Brennan Sweet’s wife and the orchestra director at Arts High School in Newark.
The two will be joined by Grammy-nominated pianist Allison Brewster Franzetti.
“This Friday’s program is brought to us by our parents and family members, some who are artists at the top of their field and recently just performed “Star Wars” music in NJSO’s wildly popular movie score events,” said Hoffman. “We are so thankful to Brennan, Christine and Allison for sharing their talents with us.”
Light dinner will be served at 7 p.m., with an open mic available for anyone who would like to perform during dinner.
The concert will begin at 8 p.m. in the main sanctuary.