Free concerts being presented at Brightview Westminster Ridge

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A free concert at noon Thursday featured Trio Giocoso --with cellist Adam Gonzalez, pianist Diana Greene and violinist Nicholas Currie -- and kicked off a monthly concert series to be held at Brightview Westminster Ridge.

The Carroll County String Project, a nonprofit musical instruction program, has partnered with Brightview Westminster Ridge, an independent-living, assisted-living and memory-care community, to bring noontime concerts there.

The free concerts, which are open to the public, will take place on the third Thursday of each month throughout 2015.


The first concert was scheduled for Jan. 15, with Trio Giocoso performing the music of Beethoven and Mendelssohn.

Brightview Westminster Ridge staff member Sarah Schlenker said there is a special connection between their community and the Carroll County String Project because the person who started the string project is a resident at Brightview Westminster Ridge.


On Feb. 19 the Carroll County String Project's Faculty Trio will perform, with Bagus Wiswakarma on violin, Maxim Kozlov on cello and Kathryn Harsha on piano. The performance will focus on trios and waltzes.

"It was a desire of resident Peggy Ward and of us wanting to bring classical music to the Carroll County community at large," Schlenker said. "We are very involved [in the community with] programs like our car show and other events that benefit the community. We want to positively impact the quality of life in Carroll County."

Schlenker said the first few concerts have the theme of trios and will be followed by a complimentary post-concert reception with the musicians, including light refreshments.

"The reception is a gathering for those who want to spend some time talking about the concert," Schlenker said.

On March 19 the Columbia Orchestra Piano Trio will perform works of Debussy and Brahms with violinist Brenda Anna, cellist Jason Love and pianist Nancy Smith.

"There is a special guest playing with the Columbia trio on March 19," Schlenker said. "Robin Massie is a guest violist for the Brahms G Minor."

The April 16 performance will be the GRANDD Trio with Lynne Griffith on French horn, Rachel Andrews on piano and David Duree on clarinet

Brightview Westminster Ridge is at 505 High Acre Drive, Westminster.


Although the concerts are free, seats must be reserved in advance by calling Brightview Westminster Ridge at 410-871-2225. Ask to speak with Cindy Martin or Ruth Wyse.

For more information about the Carroll County String Project, call Kathryn Harsha at 443-300-8702 or visit

Financial health

A Financial Health Workshop will be held at Crossroads Community Church from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Jan. 24.

At this workshop, which is free and open to the public, participants will learn how to "get out of debt, save money and use God's gifts wisely," according to the church website.

Workshop leader Joe Wood said he put the program together with his wife, Sherry Wood, and another couple, Adam and Lisa Broe.


"It's a hybrid of things we've learned," Wood said. "We've been in bad financial shape over the years and we found a way to get relief. We will be sharing what we learned with others who are facing the same."

Wood said he follows New York Times best-selling author, radio host and financial guru Dave Ramsey, and this program will offer similar teachings.

"A lot of the principles follow what he teaches, like basic budgeting, how to manage finances from a cash-flow perspective and how to work to get out of debt, if you need to do that as well," Wood said.

Preregistration is required by Jan. 23. Register for the event online at by clicking on the link at the bottom of the page, or call the church at 443-487-4002.

Crossroads Church is at 895 Leidy Road, Westminster.

Grammy nominees


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See Grammy nominees Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen in concert at the Carroll Arts Center at 8 p.m. Jan. 31 in a concert presented by Common Ground on the Hill.

Originally this concert was scheduled for Feb. 7, but the date was changed after the band received news of its Grammy nomination. Since the band will be attending the Grammy Awards on Feb. 8, the date was changed.

Frank Solivan, Mike Munford, Chris Luquette and Dan Booth make up this bluegrass band. Prior to its Grammy nomination, the band won 2012, 2013 and 2014 Best Bluegrass Band honors from the Washington Area Music Association. The band's newest album is titled "Cold Spell."

The cost of this concert is $25, or $22 for senior citizens 65 and older and students with an ID. Tickets will be sold in advance at and at the door if still available.

For more information, call Common Ground on the Hill at 410-857-2771.

The Carroll Arts Center at 91 W. Main St., Westminster.


Lois Szymanski covers Finksburg, Gamber, Pleasant Valley, Reese, Sandymount, Silver Run, Smallwood, Union Mills and Westminster. To contact her, call 410-346-7321 or email