Back Bay - Midtown neighborhood notes

Staff Writer
Link Boston Homes

Organ concerts

Trinity Church, 206 Clarendon St., will present organ concerts at 12:15 p.m. on Fridays, June 2 and 9.

Performers will include Jacques Boucher, Sophie de Courval and Julie Vidrick Evans. There is no charge for admission, but donations are welcome.

Call 617-536-0944 or visit for more information.

Book sale

The Friends of the Boston Public Library will hold a book sale from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 3 in the Cushman Room at the Central Library, 700 Boylston St.

Adult and juvenile books, CDs and DVDs will be sold at low prices with proceeds supporting the community programs of the Boston Public Library.

Call 617-536-5400 for further information.

Chorale concert

The Old South Church, 645 Boylston St., will present the Renaissance Men in concert from 3 to 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 4.

Boston’s acclaimed male vocal chamber ensemble will explore sacred and secular compositions by those who suffered with mental and behavioral disorders, including works by Berlioz, Schumann, Rachmaninoff, Lassus and Mussorgsky. American composer Jay Mobley will premiere a major work for male voices based on written testimonials from those in moments of crisis.

A song from Nirvana’s “MTV Unplugged in New York” album, featuring the songs of Kurt Cobain, which will celebrate its 25th anniversary this year, will introduce the three acts of the program.

Call 617-536-8061 or visit for more information.


The Neighborhood Association of the Back Bay invites the community to a special production of Lerner and Loewe’s “Camelot” at 3 p.m. on Sunday, June 4 at the Lyric Stage Company, 140 Clarendon St.

In this award-winning musical, King Arthur’s peaceful kingdom and the Knights of the Round Table are threatened by the growing love of Queen Guinevere and Sir Lancelot.

NABB has ordered a block of tickets in the center section of the theater. The ticket price is $62 for both members and non-members.

A special talk backstage with the actors will be held after the performance.

Visit or call 617-214-3961 to purchase tickets or for more details.

Cooking Boston

The Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston St., will present a talk, “Cooking Boston: Ice Kings” from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 6.

From the ice harvesting business and Victorian ice cream parlors such as Bailey’s to innovators such as Steve’s, the city has an unusual obsession with ice cream. Gus Rancatore, Jeri Quinzio and Judy Herrell will explore why this area is so devoted to ice cream and how these institutions changed the country’s taste for frozen treats.

Admission is free for members and $20 for non-members. There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30 p.m.

Registration is required, by calling 617-646-0578 or online at

Twilight garden party

The Garden Club of the Back Bay will host its annual fundraiser, the Twilight Garden Party, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 6 at the “Sitting Grove” at the Prudential Center, 800 Boylston St.

The club will celebrate its 54th anniversary with an evening of live music, an open bar and hors d’oeuvres.

Proceeds from the evening will help the garden club with its work planting trees in partnership with the Parks Department, pruning street trees, planting window boxes at the Women’s Lunch Place and tending gardens at not-for-profit properties.

For more information, visit

Summer concert

The Berklee College of Music will start its summer series with a free concert at noon on Tuesday, June 6 at the Prudential Center, 800 Boylston St.

Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Nicolas Emden from Chile will entertain. Visit for more information.

Introduction to genealogy

The New England Historic Genealogical Society, 99-101 Newbury St., will host a new visitors day at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, June 7.

This free orientation and tour will introduce resources available at the NEHGS research facility, home to more than 15 million artifacts, books, manuscripts, microfilms, journals, photographs and records to help research family histories. Tour attendees are welcome to use the resources following the tour. Registration is not required.

Further information can be found at or by calling 888-296-3447.

Concert in the courtyard

The Berklee College of Music will present an outdoor concert in the courtyard at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, June 9 in the McKim courtyard at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St.

Marco Mares, a singer-songwriter from Mexico City, will showcased his fresh pop sound in a free concert. His interactive performances highlight fun, funky pop mixed with romantic Spanish lyrics.

Call 617-536-5400 or visit for more information.

Benefit concert

The 15th “Playing For The Planet” benefit concert will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, June 10 at the Community Church of Boston, 565 Boylston St.

The concert will showcase master musicians from three different musical traditions in a joyful pan-cultural evening, with all proceeds going to benefit the environmental advocacy group The performers will include the Latin American perspectives of Sol y Canto, the North Indian vocal music of Aditya Rohit Shah and the Rev. Fred Small’s compelling songs of struggle and justice.

Admission is $20 adults, $15 for students and seniors. For more information, call 781-396-0734, or visit

Shakespeare in the library

Composer in residence Beau Kenyon will present a reimagining of Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 10 and 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 11 at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St.

The production will be in the form of a performance installation featuring music by Kenyon and choreography by Michelle Chasse. It will begin in the Deferrari Hall before dispersing throughout the McKim and Johnson buildings with a final culminating piece in the courtyard.

From Monday, June 5 through Friday, June 9, pop-up performances will provide a preview to the complete work. The play is part of “All the City’s a Stage: A Season of Shakespeare at the Boston Public Library,” commemorating the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death.

For more details, visit or call 617-536-5400.

Irish genealogy

The Irish genealogy study group will meet from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Saturday, June 10 at the New England Historic Genealogical Society, 99-101 Newbury St.

The Irish genealogy study group will gather to talk about research problems and share solutions. Everyone is welcome and attendees are invited to stay and use the library resources afterwards. No registration is necessary.

Contact Mary Ellen Grogan at for more information.

Olmsted and Central Park

The Gibson House, 137 Beacon St., will welcome author Maureen Meister in a book talk from 6 to 8 p.m. on Monday, June 12. A reception will be held at 6 p.m. with the talk at 6:30 p.m.

Meister will introduce the 1869 publication “A Description of the New York Central Park” by Clarence C. Cook, the story of how the designers, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, came to design the park and the battle to retain their plans. Meister tells how Olmsted and Vaux advised Cook on what he wrote, and she has found evidence to suggest that they initiated the book’s publication. Her new introduction to this tome sheds light on how the book served a greater purpose – championing Olmsted and Vaux and advocating for their vision – a dream for a public park that has come to be regarded as New York City’s achievement and a model for the nation.

Meister is an art historian who has taught for many years at Boston-area universities including Tufts, Lesley and Northeastern and is the author of several books on the Arts and Crafts Movement.

Admission is $10 for members and $12 for non-members.

Call 617-267-6338 or visit to register and for further information.

Art of the garden

The French Cultural Center, 53 Marlborough St., is displaying “Les Gardiens du Jardin” by Mary Beth McAllister, now to July 5.

The works are gouache and ink, and are a collection of drawings relating to all things French, gourmand and garden.

American artist and designer McAllister was influenced by a magical childhood garden, which became a muse for the worlds she creates in her paintings, sculptures and designer show houses. Her work has been exhibited in numerous art exhibits on the East Coast and is in many private collections.

The exhibition is free, but reservations are recommended. Gallery hours are from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Mondays through Thursdays and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays.

For more information and to make a reservation, call 617-912-0400 or visit

Victorian Back Bay

Boston By Foot is offering 90-minute guided, walking tours of the Back Bay at 2 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 10 a.m. on Sundays, now to 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 adults, $8 children 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 or call 617-237-2345.

Library tours

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

For tours by appointment, call 617-536-5400, ext. 2216.