Musicians unite to benefit Rochester’s Foodlink on January 24

January 11, 2016

More Information:
Eastman Office of Communications, 585-274-1050

“If Music Be the Food…”, the concert series benefiting Rochester’s Foodlink, will continue its seventh season of concerts on Sunday, Jan. 24, at 7:30 p.m. at Third Presbyterian Church, 4 Meigs St.   

In celebration of Mozart’s birthday, the concert will open with the beloved G Minor String Quintet, performed by Ying Quartet first violinist Robin Scott, Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra violinist Thomas Rodgers, Eastman School viola professors Carol Rodland and George Taylor, and Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra principal cellist Ahrim Kim. Eastman Professor of Piano Douglas Humpherys will perform Haydn’s Fantasia in C Major and Mozart’s Adagio in B Minor, and the concert will conclude with Mozart’s glorious Gran Partita, conducted by Eastman faculty member Mark Powell with Eastman Professor of String Bass James VanDemark and Eastman students. 

“If Music Be the Food…” is a grass roots community project whose mission is to increase awareness and support for the hungry through the sharing of great music.  Eastman faculty and students, members of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, other local professional musicians and distinguished international guests donate their time and talents for these concerts so that all proceeds can go to the hungry via Foodlink.  No tickets are sold for the concerts, rather, audience members are asked to bring non-perishable food items or cash donations for Foodlink as the price of admission. Last season’s concerts garnered more than $3500 and nearly 900 pounds of food for Foodlink. 

“If Music Be the Food…” was created in 2009 by Carol Rodland, Professor of Viola at the Eastman School of Music. A passionate and long-time supporter of food banks, Rodland joined the Eastman faculty in 2008.  Reports in the news of increased need for food aid in the community due to the economic downturn inspired her to create the series. Peter DuBois, Director of Music at Third Presbyterian Church, and Robert Poovey, Director of Music at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church are musical and administrative partners in the series.  

Season Seven will conclude on Monday, May 2, at 7:30 PM at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, and will feature the Ying Quartet, bass-baritone Jan Opalach, and organists Robert Poovey and Karl Robson. For further information please visit and “like” “If Music Be the Food…” on Facebook.  

The success of “If Music Be the Food…” has inspired other prominent musicians in the United States to create initiatives based on this concept in their own communities, including “If Music Be the Food…” Tampa, “If Music Be the Food…” Tucson, the newly launched “If Music Be the Food…” Dickinson, and “Music For Food” in Boston.   

Foodlink is a regional food hub and the Feeding America food bank serving Allegany, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Wayne, Wyoming, and Yates Counties. Foodlink’s operations target the root causes of hunger by distributing food to a network of human service agencies, serving meals through its commercial kitchen, and offering more than 30 food-related programs. In 2014, Foodlink distributed over 18 million pounds of food—including 3.6 million pounds of produce, offered more than 200 nutrition education courses, and created new access points for healthy foods in underserved communities.  Foodlink’s innovative approach directly addresses health disparities related to food insecurity. More information about Foodlink can be found online at