Texas Strong

Texas Strong: Harvey Can’t Mess with Texas was an appropriate name for Friday’s benefit concert at the Frank Erwin Center on the UT campus. The  first hour of the concert was streamed on YouTube and broadcast on some Texas TV stations. Proceeds went to the Dell Foundation’s Rebuild Texas fund. As of this writing, over $70M had been raised to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

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HONK!TX: 2017

Last weekend our city hosted the 7th annual HONK!TX festival of community street bands. Eleven of the 25 bands were from Austin. On Friday evening, the bands played along South Congress. Saturday afternoon’s festivities centered around Adams Hemphill Park and Spider House Cafe. Sunday morning’s parade was cancelled due to thunderstorms, but the front moved through quickly, and an All Band Revue was held in Pan Am Park.

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HAAM Benefit Day: 2016


Yesterday was HAAM Benefit Day, an annual fundraising day for the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians. HAAM is a non-profit that helps local musicians gain access to affordable healthcare services. Over 200 groups performed at various locations to raise awareness and much-needed funds. A long list of local businesses also contributed at least 5% of their receipts for the day.

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The Big Squeeze: 2016


The Big Squeeze is usually an annual competition for teenage accordion players, but this year a tenth anniversary concert was held on the plaza in front of the Bob Bullock Texas History Museum. I think this was partly due to a change in coordinators at the sponsoring organization, Texas Folklife. The concert was not well-attended, probably because it conflicted with the Pecan Street Festival and the O. Henry Pun-Off.

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The Austin Symphony


Now in their 105th season, the Austin Symphony performs at Dell Hall in The Long Center. The orchestra performs classical programs about one weekend per month from September through June. Their season includes three other concerts (The Messiah, Halloween, and Young Composers) as well as four Pops performances (most recently, Lights, Camera…the Oscars!). They also play free concerts on July 4th and on Sunday evenings in the summer. Peter Bay has directed the Austin Symphony for 18 years.

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