Federation Music Groups

Chorale

The group, originally known as the Bloomfield Civic Chorus was organized in 1933 with an invitation extended by the Bloomfield Board of Recreation and printed in the Bloomfield Independent Press.  The fifty member chorus joined with the Bloomfield Symphonic Orchestra and gave their debut performance on May 6, 1934.  Under the leadership of Walter Kurkewicz the choir grew to a membership of one hundred and twenty five.

For over seven decades the group flourished  and presented many ambitious programs and was led by a series of very able conductors..  However, lifestyles changed and the membership dwindled, forcing the group to finally disband and it remained defunct for four years.

In 2008 the Bloomfield Federation of Music made a commitment to reorganize the group.  Under the leadership of Ruth Hsu the group, now known as the Bloomfield Chorale, has grown to 25 members and goes from strength to strength under Ruth's leadership. 

To contact the director of the Chorale, please email Ruth Hsu as the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Civic Band

The Bloomfield Civic Band was “born” on Friday, March 1, 1946, when more than 20 people brought music stands to the high school cafeteria. Directed by Walter Kurkewicz, the band made its debut July 4, 1946 in Bloomfield’s “Welcome Home Celebration,” playing for memorial services in the morning and a parade in the afternoon. Park concerts followed during the summer, and the first indoor performance was held Sunday, January 19, 1947.

Dominick Ferrara III was named as conductor in September, 1972. A devotee of band music, he has led the Civic Band through yet another metamorphosis. Today the band plays a wide variety of music, often utilizing vocal and instrumental soloists.

Please visit our dedicated site at: www.bloomfieldcivicband.org

Mandolin Orchestra

In 1941, a group of six musicians met in the backroom of a local barbershop to discuss their dream of forming a mandolin orchestra. However, their dreams were put aside as our nation prepared to fight in World War II. At the conclusion of the war in 1945, these music pioneers formed the Orange and Vicinities Mandolin Society, under the direction of Elia Ciricillo. In a few years, this group quickly expanded into a sixty-member orchestra.

The orchestra members truly view themselves as a family and that feeling of camaraderie beautifully flows through all of its performances and touches audience members' hearts. Under Gabriel L. Nevola's direction for thirty seven years, the Bloomfield Mandolin Orchestra amassed an extensive repertoire, which includes traditional Italian and American songs, opera and Broadway selections, classical and jazz pieces, and original compositions.

Please visit our dedicated site at: www.bloomfieldmandolinorchestra.org

Symhony Orchestra

The Bloomfield Symphony Orchestra is one of the oldest of New Jersey’s 25 community orchestras, having performed its 1st concert in 1932 with its founder, Walter Kurkewicz conducting. Maestro Kurkewicz was succeeded by Louis Sutera in 1961 and Edward J. Napiwocki in 1964. Israel G. Herman, is the present Musical Director and Conductor.

Please visit our dedicated site at: www.bloomfieldsymphony.org 

Youth Band

The Bloomfield Youth band was founded in 1986 by its present conductor, Patrick Burns. The band’s first public concert was held on May 8, 1987 at Bloomfield High School. By that time the youth band had become a member of the Bloomfield Federation of Music which provided benefits of the broader Federation umbrella. Today, the Bloomfield Youth Band has earned the reputation as an outstanding musical ensemble. Comprised of some sixty high school and collegiate musicians, the band performs three or four public concerts each year in Bloomfield. At its Tenth Anniversary Concert in June 1996, the band was recognized by the Township of Bloomfield, the New Jersey General Assembly, and the United States House of Representatives for its civic and cultural contribution to the town and to the State of New Jersey.

Please visit our dedicated site at www.bloomfieldyouthband.org

Civic Band Overview

The Bloomfield Civic Band was “born” on Friday, March 1, 1946, when more than 20 people brought music stands to the high school cafeteria. Sponsored by the Bloomfield Federation of Music, it joined its sister organizations the Symphony Orchestra, the Chorus, the Mandolin Orchestra, and the Men’s Glee Club. The purpose was twofold: to give playing opportunities to those who wished them, and to provide the community with enjoyable musical experiences. Directed by Walter Kurkewicz, the band made its debut July 4, 1946 in Bloomfield’s “Welcome Home Celebration,” playing for memorial services in the morning and a parade in the afternoon. Park concerts followed during the summer, and the first indoor performance was held Sunday, January 19, 1947.

Upon the retirement of Walter Kurkewicz in 1961, Ray Hartman, director of the high school band, was named to the post. Under his leadership the band’s membership grew, and its repertoire enlarged to include 20th century compositions. High school students were urged to participate, and one of the highlights of the 1960’s was a trip to the NY World’s Fair where the band performed at the NJ Pavilion.

Dr. Morton Achter of Bloomfield College replaced the retiring Hartman for one year. There were some problems, though, and the band ranks begin to dwindle.

When Dominick Ferrara III stepped on the podium in September, 1972, he found a very loyal core of 15-20 musicians eager to help him rebuild the band. A devotee of band music, he has led the Civic Band through yet another metamorphosis. Today the band plays a wide variety of music, often utilizing vocal and instrumental soloists.

Please visit our dedicated site at: www.bloomfieldcivicband.org

Chorale Overview

The group, originally known as the Bloomfield Civic Chorus was organized in 1933 with an invitation extended by the Bloomfield Board of Recreation and printed in the Bloomfield Independent Press.  The fifty member chorus joined with the Bloomfield Symphonic Orchestra and gave their debut performance on May 6, 1934.  Under the leadership of Walter Kurkewicz the choir grew to a membership of one hundred and twenty five.

For over seven decades the group flourished  and presented many ambitious programs and was led by a series of very able conductors..  However, lifestyles changed and the membership dwindled, forcing the group to finally disband and it remained defunct for four years.

In 2008 the Bloomfield Federation of Music made a commitment to reorganize the group.  Under the leadership of Ruth Hsu the group, now known as the Bloomfield Chorale, has grown to 25 members.  A winter performance is given in conjunction with the Bloomfield Civic Band and a solo concert is given in the Spring.

Mandolin Overview

Mandolin Overview