Carolyn Braun is a classical musician – she played the violin in the Port Angeles Symphony until last year – and she also has a big heart.
In her work as co-manager of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church’s "Music Live with Lunch" program with her husband, Ray, Braun said she gets to combine her love of music with her passion for giving back.
The program, which was started many years ago and which the Brauns began organizing five years ago, showcases musical talents from Port Townsend to the West End. Braun said none of the performers gets paid – they all donate their time and gifts and a portion of the proceeds from the lunch go to peninsula-area nonprofits or for student scholarships.
"It’s an outreach in musical terms to local musicians and an outreach in actual monetary terms," Braun explained. "It’s something I believe in and people seem to enjoy it so much."
Braun said seniors, many who cannot drive at night or perhaps cannot drive to Port Angeles for the large concerts often held there, largely attend the lunchtime concerts.
Braun said although she tries to focus on classical musicians, she also tries to choose a bit of a variety to fit every member of the audience.
"Sequim residents have a variety of tastes, so I try to have a variety of performers come in," she said. "We try to get a potpourri and it is up to each performer what they sing."
On Sept. 16, the Music Live with Lunch programs welcomes soprano Linda Bach and pianist Helen Lauritzen.
"Linda is singing everything from operatic music to ‘Porgy and Bess,’" Braun said.
The series is sponsored by St. Luke’s Episcopal Church and is held there on the third Tuesday of each month from September through May, omitting December. Both the performance and lunch are included in the price of the ticket, which is $9 through the Thursday before the concert and $10 after. Tickets can be obtained at the church office from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. For more information, call the church office at 683-4862 or the Brauns at 452-0495.
Music Live with Lunch schedule
Sept. 16: Linda Bach, soprano accompanied by pianist Helen Lauritzen
Oct. 21: Cellist Fred Thompson
Nov. 18: Port Angeles High School chamber orchestra
Jan. 20: Organist Paul Roy
Feb. 17: Recorder player Dennis Crabbe
March 17: Sequim High School wind ensembles
April 21: TBA
May 19: Denny Secord, country ensemble