Music Without Borders brings world to Morristown

(Morristown,NJ) -The Mayo Performing Arts Center and the Arts Council of the Morris Area (with  rainsite provided by the United Methodist Church) present their third annual Music Without Borders free summer outdoor lunchtime concert series on the Morristown Green. The series began June 26 and ran every other Tuesday through August 7. Concerts were scehduled from 12 pm – 1:00 pm. The Music Without Borders series is sponsored by Novartis.

Each Music Without Borders concert  featured a performance of world music reflecting the diverse culture and population of the area.

“We hope that people will enjoy our wonderful free lunchtime outdoor concerts that celebrate the rich cultural diversity of the area,” said Allison Larena, President and CEO of the Mayo Performing Arts Center.

Tom Werder, Executive Director of the Arts Council of the Morris Area, adds, “It’s exciting to collaborate with the Mayo Center on this special series and to literally bring the world to the center of Morristown.”



MEXICAN MUSIC: Mariachi Citlalli

Nearly 250 people attended the June 26th kickoff featuring Mariachi Citlalli. It was a glorious day – cool and sunny – and everyone was having a good time!

For a brief video of the band performing, click HERE.  Click HERE for additional coverage by Kevin Coughlin and staff of (more videos and photos) and HERE for coverage (with photos and video) by

Here are some other scenes:

L-R: Talking with new fans; dancing to the music; a question for the band;  the band poses with the Music Without Borders Banner (l-r: Bernardo Ponce, Nick Navarrete, Jerry Navarrete and Francisco Navarrete); young fan models a sombrero.


 BRAZILIAN MUSIC: Mauricio de Souza and Bossa Brasil


On July 10, 2012, over 300 people attended the program of Brazilian music by Mauricio de Souza and Bossa Brasil®. The weather was glorious…sunny, not too hot and with a slight breeze. The group’s performers featured Mauricio de Souza on drums, Gary Mazzaroppi (formerly bassist with Les Paul) on bass, Juilliard grad Sharel Cassity on sax and Alan Chaubert, miraculously, on trumpet and keyboard, simultaneously!








L-R: Crowds enjoy Bossa Brasil®; Mauricio de Souza and Bossa Brasil® performing (Mauricio de Souza on drums, Gary Mazzaroppi on bass, Sharel Cassity on sax and Alan Chaubert on keyboard and trumpet); more crowds throughout the park enjoying the music.

To hear the group playing Brazilian jazz,  click HERE   and to hear Alan Chaubert working his trumpet and keyboard magic, click HERE.


NATIVE AMERICAN MUSIC AND DANCE: Redhawk Native American Arts Council Dance Troupe

On July 24, nearly 300 people attended (including nearly 100 children) the performance by the Redhawk Native American Arts Council Dance  Troupe which performed a wide variety of “first nation” dances, including the Smoke Dance, The Grass Dance, the Iroquois Robin Dance, the Jingle Dress Dance, the Shawl Dance and the intricate and extraordinary Hoop Dance. Cliff Matias (Kichwa, Taino) explained the intricacies and symbolism of the dances, serving and singer and drummer in addition to masterfully dancing the Hoop Dance. He was joined by dancers Malia Mahi (Native Hawaiaan, Taino), Lucero Cavelight (Navajo, Aztec) and Robert White Magpie (Lakota).  The many children were eager participants in the dancing and Leslie Bensley of the Morris County Tourism Bureau played the part of a maiden to be wooed by a young warrior’s flute music and dancing.









L-R: Children participating in the Buffalo dance; Malia Mahi performing the Jingle Dress Dance; Luvero Cavelight performing the Shawl Dance and Robert White Magpie with his warrior’s flute to woo his ladylove.


L-R: Cliff Mattias dances the intricate Hoop Dance; Dancers Malia Mahi and Lucero Cavelight; The Troupe – Lucero Cavelight, Cliff Mattias, Robert White Magpie and Malia Mahi.


For a brief video of Robert White Magpie performing the Grass Dance, click HERE

For a brief video of children performing the Iroquois Robin Dance, click HERE

For a brief video of Cliff Mattias performing part of the Hoop Dance, click HERE

For a brief video of Lucero Cavelight performing part of the Shawl Dance, click HERE



On August 7th, 2012, Music Without Borders had a record crowd of 436 people (150 of them kids) + all those enjoying the performance from their seats at cafes and restaurants around the Green. Perfect weather – warm and dry, with a slight breeze –  greeted the Barynya trio who brought a wide variety of Russian music and dance to Morristown, showcasing Cossack, Russian folk, Russian Jewish and gypsy traditions in the music, costuming and dancing. Mikhail Smirnov, the artistic director of the troupe, sang and accompanied the others on garmoshka (Russian accordian) and guitar, while Elina Karokhina demostrated her virtuosity on the balalaika and Valentina Kvasova brought energy and grace to her marvelous folk dancing and singing.







L-R:  Dancer/singer Valentina Kvasova with balalaika virtuoso, Elina Karokhina; Valentina Kvasova performs Russian gypsy dance; Mikhail Smirnov on garmoshka with Elina Karokhina holding balalaika.








L-R: Enthusiastic crowds clapped along; Valentina Kvasova performs Russian gypsy dance before young and old spectators; more enthusiastic crowds.

For a brief video of Valentina Kvasova performing a dance from Siberia, click  HERE .

For a brief video of Valentina Kvasova performing part of the Russian Jewish wedding dance, Mazal Tov, click HERE.

For a brief video of Valentina Kvasova performing  part of Dve Gitary (Two Guitars), a gypsy folk song and dance, click HERE.

For a brief video of Elina Karokhina demonstrating her virtuosic balalaika skills in a solo entitled Birch Tree, click HERE.

For a brief video of Valentina Kvasova performing a Russian maiden’s dance, click HERE.

For a brief video of  Valentina Kvasova performing the traditional Russian folk dance, Kalinka, click HERE.


Music Without Borders concert schedule:

June 26: Mexican Music – Mariachi Citlalli

Described by the NY Times as “four young musicians, decked out in elegant black uniforms, with fancy buttonwork typical of roving Mexican troubadours,” this highly talented mariachi band performs a wide range of Mexican music from traditional to contemporary. Founded in 2000, the group’s four members perform on trumpet, vihuela (5 string guitar-like instrument), guitarron (large guitar), and keyboard/accordion.  Mariachi Citlalli has performed on national media with such celebrities as Rosie O’Donnell, Sally Jessie Raphael, President Bush (Sr.), former Mexican President Ernesto Cedillo, former leader of the Dominican Republic Pena Gomez, Donald Trump, Mariah Carey, and  Conan O’Brien, among others. They have also performed at such leading venues as Madison Square Garden, Lincoln Center, the Sullivan Theater (David Letterman’s studios), Shea Stadium, the Plaza Hotel, the Waldorf Astoria, the United Nations and a vast list of caterers and clubs all over New York. For more information on the group, visit

July 10: Brazilian Music: Mauricio de Souza with Bossa Brasil®
Maurício de Souza and Bossa Brasil®, with their unique, exciting, and sophisticated arrangements, cover a wide array of Brazilian jazz standards including the music of Tom Jobim and Hermeto Pascoal, and Egberto Gismonti, among others. Their 2010 album, Here.There, has received widespread critical acclaim – featured on WBGO, and voted the #1 jazz album by WWPV FM. On Jazz Week for three weeks, it was also reviewed by Jazz Times MagazineAll About Jazz NY, Jazz Inside Magazine, and All About Jazz (online). Additionally, the album is in Pandora’s music library and was voted among the top 30 jazz albums by Music Choice.  For more details and information, visit

July 24: Native American Music & Dance: The Redhawk Native American Arts Council/ Dance Troupe
The Redhawk Dance Troupe features Native American performing artists who educate and delight audiences by interpreting and presenting social, traditional, and contemporary dances. Since 1993, the Redhawk Native American Arts Council’s performing artists have been sharing Native American dance, music, art and history with audiences around the world. With live singing and drumming, they present traditional and social dances along with articulate verbal interpretation in high energy, exciting performances, combining traditions from various nations to help audiences understand the differences among Native American nations. Redhawk also hosts four of the largest Native American Pow Wows in New York and New Jersey. Visitors enjoy Native food, music, dance, crafts, art and traditions at these annual events which include over 1,000 Native American artists, performers, and educators from across the Americas, provide opportunities for cross-cultural interaction, and help to insure the survival of Native American traditions. The Troupe has performed for the President of the United States and at such venues as NY’s Woodstock Festival, the renowned Apollo Theatre, and Dance Theater of Harlem. They have also appeared such TV shows as Good Day New York and Regis & Kathy Lee, among others. For more information, visit

August 7: Russian Music & Dance: Barynya
Established in 1991, Barynya is considered the premier Russian folk ensemble outside of Russia. It presents Russian, Cossack, Ukrainian, Russian Jewish, and Roma Gypsy traditional dancing, music, songs, and virtuoso performances on instruments including the balalaika, domra and garmoshka (Russian folk button accordion). Barynya has performed at such top venues as Carnegie Hall, the National Constitution Center (Philadelphia), the Smithsonian Institute (DC), the United Nations, and the Russian Embassy in Washington, DC. With an impressive client roster of dignitaries, politicians, celebrities and organizations from around the world, Barynya performed at the 2008 Gala after former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev received the Liberty Medal from then-President George H.W. Bush and Barynya’s members have performed at private celebrity parties, hosted by the likes of Barbara Walters, Elton John, the Rolling Stones, and Tommy Hilfiger. Most recently, in recognition of his work as founder/artistic director of Baryna, Mikhail Smirnov was invited to serve as a judge on NBC’s hit dance show, Superstars of Dance. Participants in this international competition – hosted by Michael Flatley (“Lord of the Dance”) and Susie Castillo, a former Miss USA – Barynya dancers were pictured on the TV GUIDE website during the competition in which they performed their acrobatic Cossack dance. For more information, visit