A Harlow Memorial Concert will be held Tuesday, Sept. 20 at the sanctuary of Washington C.H.’s First Presbyterian Church (across from the post office).
One year after its rousingly successful performance here, three young professional musicians connected with the award-winning Astralis Chamber Ensemble will return to Washington C.H. in a different configuration and with different music—for example, from Tomaso Giovanni Albinoni, born in 1671, to Alan Elkins, born in 1985. Flutist Angela Massey may, however, look familiar to many in the audience.
A goal of Astralis is to make classical music more accessible and to reach communities of all backgrounds through music. And this is where Perse Harlow comes in.
Harlow operated Harlow Business Service from his Washington C.H. home while serving as treasurer for First Presbyterian Church. His passion, however, was to travel to major cities to enjoy operas, orchestral concerts and musicals. Upon his death in 1998, the trustees of his will were instructed to develop a “Harlow Memorial Concert series of classical or semi-classical music in Fayette County.”
Thanks to those funds, the Cincinnati Pops used to perform on the opening nights of past Fayette County Fairs. More recently, in March 2019 the Emerald City Swing Orchestra from Dublin, Ohio, put on a Big Band concert in the historic auditorium on East Temple Street. As the global pandemic eased, in October 2021 the Astralis Chamber Ensemble featuring flute, cello and harp was invited here for the first time.
One of the trustees of the Perse E. Harlow Trust is local musician David Penwell, who also teaches the business courses and advises the DECA club at Washington High School. His students take responsibility for jobs such as running a school store, organizing homecoming and prom, and many other projects.
Penwell said, “The 31 sophomore students in my ‘Principles of Marketing’ class were happy to help with the publicity—designing posters and the programs for the concert—because they saw it as both a community-service project as well as a useful hands-on experience.”
To enjoy this unique musical event, mark the Sept. 20 date now on your calendar. The concert will begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $10 at the door; free admission for all students.