NORWICH – In 1909, they met monthly in the high society parlors of downtown Norwich to foster their love and appreciation of the art. Many were teachers or performers in their own right, and all took membership in the aristocratic circle quite seriously.
In 2009, the Victorian-era formality is long gone, but the mission of the Monday Evening Musical Club remains largely the same – to broaden the exposure of music and culture among its members and the community at large.
Gone are the fancy hats and white gloves – today, even a few members are men – and the group has long since stopped meeting in private homes and opened its performances to the public at the United Church of Christ in Norwich. But what started as an elitist social club has evolved into a small but lively group whose aims still include the cultural, and have added the charitable as well.
“The club started as an elite social group, by invitation only,” noted Susan Cooney Ticknor, longtime member of the Monday Evening Musical Club. “Most of the members were performers themselves, and included some well-known names in Norwich history.”
The club is celebrating its Centennial year in 2009, kicking off with a special concert Sunday afternoon titled “A Look Back and to the Future.” The concert, open to the public, takes place at 4 p.m. Sunday at the United Church of Christ in Norwich. Free will donations will be accepted.