A Brief History of
Armstrong  Chamber  Concerts

Helen Armstrong, founder of ACC, organized the first benefit concert in 1982 to launch a series of concerts in Washington, Connecticut, under the name of the Washington Chamber Music Society which began the following year. Five concerts were performed at the Washington Club Hall in 1983. Shortly thereafter, the Society moved its concerts to the First Congregational Church as it had superior acoustics, and could accommodate larger audiences. In 1988, the Society began a series of concerts in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, know as the Commonwealth Series. That same year the Society changed it's name to Armstrong Chamber Concerts, a name that seemed to encompass more readily the growing number of activities and venues. In April of 1992, the Commonwealth Series moved to Lenox, Massachusetts and became a resident chamber music group at the Town Hall Theatre where Hugh Downs joined the artists in a special interview. In 1993 ACC premiered a new salon series in Greenwich, Connecticut. Beginning in October 2004, we have moved our series from Washington, CT to The First Congregational Church in New Milford, CT and will also be performing at the Greenwich Public Library.

Other ACC concerts series have included one on Martha's Vineyard, at the Charles Ives Center for the Arts in Danbury, Connecticut, and another at the Danbury Correctional Institute which has been reinstated. In 1990, an educational program was added to provide musical enrichment to school children in the regional school district. In this program, Ms. Armstrong arranges performances, workshops, seminars and residencies in which she and a number of her artists-colleagues participate. This is an important part of ACC's philosophy which develops new audiences of all ages.

Several prominent musical personalities have supported ACC by providing their talents for benefit concerts. In December of 1989, Itzhak Perlman performed in Washington, Connecticut. Skitch Henderson collaborated with Helen Armstrong in the fall of 1991 to support ACC's educational programs. The following year, Peter Duchin and his orchestra were part of a gala benefit to help raise funds for ACC's series at the Charles Ives Center for the Arts. Robert Sherman and Marge Champion have shared their knowledge and witty commentary.

The 2004-05 Series begins it's first season in New Milford, Connecticut and twelfth salon series in Greenwich, Connecticut. A new series has been added this October 2004 at the Greenwich Public Library, Connecticut. Please see our schedule page for concert details




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Created: 1/21/97 Updated: 9/9/09