Historic Performances at Historic Congregations

Did you know that some of the best performances are taking place this weekend at two of NYC’s most historic houses of worship?

  • The Queen’s Chamber Band & Choir gathers around the harpsichord to celebrate Bach’s Birthday tonight at 8pm at one of the oldest congregations in the City, the First Moravian Church at Lexington & 30th Street. Although the church building itself dates from 1849, the actual congregation dates back to 1748, when Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) himself was still composing. Be sure to take a peek at the unusual and historic 1840s organ behind you in the loft. If you can’t make it in person, enjoy the Queen’s Chamber Band’s beautiful Bach on YouTube.
  • Although the Hell’s Kitchen synagogue was founded in 1917, when you walk through the doors of the Actors Temple at 339 West 47th Street, you’ll enter a 1923 national landmark frequented by the greats of vaudeville, nightclubs, and live TV. Personalities like Al Jolson, Jack Benny, Shelley Winters, Harpo Marx, and even Frank Sinatra. The space was designed to multitask as a house of worship, gathering space, and (can’t you guess?) a theater. Appearing every Saturday and Sunday you can catch the terrific ensemble of Laydon Gray’s Black Angels over Tuskegee, the gripping true-life tale of WWII’s first African-American fighter-pilot squadron (currently in its third year). Go see it and take a trip through history.  



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