Improvisational pianist James Ballard will present two interactive Sound*Celebration concerts next week as part of his Maine tour. The Santa Fe musician and composer will offer the first “soul-centered” concert on Sunday, October 2 from 6-7:30 pm at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Ellsworth, 121 Bucksport Rd. The concert will help raise funds for the CROP Hunger Walk taking place on Sunday.
The second concert will be on Wednesday, October 5 from 6:30-8 pm at the Bagaduce Music Lending Library (BMLL) Performance Hall, 49 South St., Blue Hill. A portion of the proceeds will benefit BMLL.
The Sound*Celebration concerts will include piano improvisation, vocal improvisation, and audience participation. Ballard said that this will not be a typical soloist-oriented concert. Each program is unique in that he channels the music for the people in attendance, including playing the Soul*Songs (Heart and Soul musical portraits) for selected audience members.
Cost of each of the concerts is $25 pre-order or $30 at the door. However, no one will be turned away for lack of funds. For more info or to order tickets, please contact Eileen Mielenhausen at Healing & Expressive Arts Retreats of Maine, (207) 441-2785 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Private sound healing sessions with James Ballard are also available.
James Ballard has been playing inspirational music since the 60’s. This gift grew out of his meditation practice, enabling a deep ability to connect with and touch the heart and soul of another. The healing energy of his music continues to affect his listeners, over and over again.
“You have to be willing to be an instrument in the way St. Francis meant in his ‘Peace Prayer,’ surrendering and trusting. How else can what’s useful and appropriate for the intended listener arrive?”
As a child, James improvised music on the piano, accompanying the stories he simultaneously imagined. His love of the piano led eventually to a degree in piano performance.
A composer, his pieces cover a range from secular to sacred, from instrumental and vocal to musical theater. He’s performed with other improvisational musicians and dancers in music intended as a vehicle for healing. He’s been a grade school music teacher, private instructor in voice and piano, and church musician.
Born on the East Coast, Ballard now lives in an historic Hispanic village in northern New Mexico. He is profoundly influenced by the natural world and feels that the energy and beauty of New Mexico enhance his intuitive and musical abilities.