Here are the latest Back Bay - Midtown neighborhood notes:
Chamber orchestra to perform
The Freisinger Chamber Orchestra will perform in concert at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 15 at the Old South Church, 645 Boylston St.
The orchestra will play Mozart’s “Symphony No. 6;” Beethoven’s “Piano Concerto No. 1” with soloist Bianca Oglice; Tubin’s “Estonian Dance Suite” and vocal selections by Donizetti and Leonard Bernstein. Soprano Hailey Fuqua and tenor Ethan Brenmer will be the guest soloists.
The suggested contribution is $16 for adults and $8 for students.
Visit www.oldsouth.org or call 617-536-1970 for further information
The Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St., will screen a series of free kids’ movies from 2 to 3:30 p.m. on Sundays during September.
Featured will be the animated feature “Wreck-It Ralph” on Sept. 16; “Matilda” based on the best-selling book by Roald Dahl on Sept. 23; and “Paddington 2” starring Hugh Grant on Sept. 30.
Call 617-536-5400 for more information.
Decline of civic life
The Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St., will welcome author Eric Klinenberg from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 17.
Americans are sorting themselves along racial, religious and cultural lines, leading to a level of polarization that the country hasn’t seen since the Civil War.
In his new book “Palaces for the People: How Social Infrastructure Can Help Fight Inequality, Polarization and the Decline of Civic Life,” Klinenberg posits that the future of democratic societies rests not simply on shared values but on shared spaces: the libraries, childcare centers, bookstores, churches, synagogues and parks where crucial and sometimes life-saving connections are formed. These are places where people gather and linger, making friends across group lines and strengthening the entire community.
Admission to this talk is free.
Call 617-536-5400 for more information.
Dr. Elif Armbruster will be the guest speaker at a free program from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 18 at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St., celebrating the 150th anniversary of the publication of “Little Women.”
In her talk, Armbruster revisits “Little Women” from the perspective of 2018 and contemplates seeing at least one of the book’s heroines—Jo March—not as a “little woman,” but as a “nasty” one.
Armbruster is an associate professor of English at Suffolk University where she teaches courses in American Literature, American Studies, and Women and Gender Studies. In addition to her book, “Domestic Biographies: At Home with Stowe, Howells, James and Wharton,” she has forthcoming essays on Willa Cather, Laura Ingalls Wilder and Harriet Beecher Stowe.
Visit www.bpl.org or call 617-536-5400 for more details.
Public one-hour tours of the Ayer Mansion, 395 Commonwealth Ave., which showcases the striking interior and exterior embellishments designed and created by Louis Comfort Tiffany, will be offered at noon on Wednesday, Sept. 19 and 3 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22.
Reservations are required as space is limited Admission is $15 for adults, $10 for students and seniors.
To make a reservation, visit www.ayermansion.org or call 617-536-2586.
‘Eleanor Roosevelt’ at the library
Delvena Theatre Company will present “Truly Eleanor” at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 20 at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St.
In this three-person, live performance, Eleanor shares some of her most private and meaningful moments - her lonely childhood; her courtship and marriage with Franklin; her devastation at Franklin’s love affair; her involvement in his presidency; and her eventual triumph at the United Nations.
The play takes a candid look at the First Lady’s courage and at her great contributions to human rights and liberty for all. The cast will open up for discussion after the performance.
Admission is free. Visit www.pbl.org or call 617-536-5400 for further information.
The Gibson House Museum, 137 Beacon St., will participate in the annual Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22.
The museum will offer free admission for one person plus a guest. Tours will not be offered, but rooms will be open for viewing.
The house designed by noted 19th century Boston architect Edward Clarke Cabot is the most authentic single-family brownstone in the Back Bay. Home to three generations of one family between 1860 and 1954, the museum welcomes visitors from around the globe who are attracted by the house’s social history, architectural significance and stellar collection of 19th and early 20th century decorative arts.
Go to www.smithsonianmag.com/museumday to download a ticket for free admission to the museum and a 10 percent discount in the museum store.
The orchestra and chorus of Emmanuel Music will kick off the new season with “All Hail St. Cecilia” at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22 at Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St.
The chorus and orchestra will perform a celebration of Benjamin Britten with two works, the “Hymn to St. Cecilia,” a beautiful and challenging a cappella showcase for the chorus, and “Fanfare for St. Edmundsbury.” They will also play “Ode for St. Cecilia’s Day” by Handel, one of the few Handel cantatas Emmanuel Music has never before performed.
Tickets range from $30 to $95. Student tickets are $10.
To purchase tickets or for more information, call 617-536-3356 or visit www.emmanuelmusic.org.
Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St., is presenting its 42nd season of the J. S. Bach Cantatas at 10 a.m. on Sundays now through May 12.
The orchestra and chorus of Emmanuel Music will present weekly performances of the cantatas and motets of J.S. Bach and others, conducted by Ryan Turner.
For more information, call 617-536-3356 or visit www.emmanuelmusic.org.
Regional art exhibition
The Guild of Boston Artists, 162 Newbury St., is hosting the annual Regional Juried Exhibition now to Sept. 29 in the President’s Gallery.
More than 30 landscapes, portraits and still life paintings will be on display.
Award winners will discuss their works at 2 p.m. with the public on Saturday, Sept. 22.
Admission is free.
Visit www.guildofbostonartists.org or call 617-536-7660 for more details.
Victorian Back Bay
Boston by Foot is offering 90-minute guided, walking tours of the Back Bay at 2:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 10 a.m. on Sundays, now through October. Walkers will meet the guide on the steps of Trinity Church at Copley Square.
Visitors will discover how the Back Bay, once a body of water, was filled in and how the neighborhood was developed in the mid-19th century to become one of the nation’s richest collections of art and architecture. The treasures of the Back Bay tour include Trinity Church, the Boston Public Library, Old South Church and the grand Back Bay townhouses.
Tickets are $13 for adults, $8 for children from ages 6 to 12 and free for members if purchased in advance or an additional $2 if purchased from the guide.
For more information, visit www.bostonbyfoot.org or call 617-237-2345.
Boston Public Library volunteers will give art and architecture tours of the McKim Building, a National Historic Landmark, in its main building, constructed in 1895, throughout the week.
Highlights include the murals of John Singer Sargent, Pierre Puvis de Chavannes and Edwin Austin Abbey and the work of architect Charles Follen McKim.
Self-guided tours are available as well, and literature describing the architectural highlights is available on the web at www.bpl.org/central/tours.htm.
For tours by appointment, call 617-536-5400.