December 19, 2013 at 11:28 AM
SUMMIT, NJ - Overlook’s Annual Senior Sing on Wednesday afternoon was led by Candice Wicke, principal artistic director and conductor at the Continuo Arts Foundation.
The program featured seniors from Summit, Westfield, Short Hills, Berkeley Heights, New Providence, Cranford, Millburn, Chatham and Madison. The Continuo Arts Foundation and its choruses recently performed at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center.
"We have up to 70 singers from Morris, Essex and Union counties come and rehearse each week," Wicke said. "We like to say it makes neighbors out of strangers.
"Each semester, they prepare different types of music to perform at rotaries, hospitals and different venues around the community."
While the foundation's music program entertains audiences at a wide variety of venues, it also serves a purpose among its members themselves, Wicke says.
"This helps these seniors have a sense of purpose for the greater good. It has had a profound effect. We are thankful for the grant from the Summit Area Public Foundation that provides this program free to area seniors."
“Summit’s Senior Sing brings such joy into the Summit Community Center each and every Wednesday. We have participants signing their hearts out well through their eighties," said Judith Josephs, director of the Department of Community Programs. “Without the financial support of the Summit Area Public Foundation, this program could not be possible.
“Our favorite performance venue is at Overlook Medical Center (which) has welcomed the group, provided them with lunch and made contributions since the program began back in 2010,” Josephs said. "It’s not just about singing, it’s about quality of life, friendships and passion.”
Lyle Brehm, a participant in Senior Sing, said that the program's benefits extend beyond making good music.
"Summit senior citizens remain young at heart as they offer their musical programs to community groups such as Overlook Medical Center," Brehm said. "We are grateful to the Summit Area Public Foundation and to Overlook for their support, and for recognizing the many physical and mental benefits that can be derived from singing.”