By Jessica Easthope
Lincoln Center has already made its mark on music, the arts and New York City and now it’s looking to leave a lasting impression on the hearts of those who have lost someone to COVID-19.
The latest of Lincoln Center’s musical endeavors is called “Memorial for Us All.”
The difference is this mini concert series is not taking place within the vast, historic performing arts center, but in the home of anyone who tunes in.
“The aspect of a funeral really allows people to come together in community and really honor and remember an individual and that is l missing right now,” said Leah Johnson, Lincoln Center’s Executive Vice President and Chief Communications and Marketing Officer.
Launching the series was an easy decision for Lincoln Center.
“Music is such an important part of the funeral ritual whether you have faith or not and we thought that is something that we could provide,” Johnson said.
“Memorial for Us All” premieres Sundays at 6 p.m. on NET TV. The first concert was hosted by famed jazz trumpet player Wynton Marsalis.
Marsalis performed a take on music from a New Orleans-style funeral. People also submitted hundreds of names of those who have passed away to be displayed during the concert.
Leading the charge on getting names and the word out about “Memorial for Us All” is Interfaith Center of New York and Father Michael Lynch.
“I think the goal for ‘Memorial for Us All’ is for people to be consoled and for people to have hope,” said Fr. Lynch, who also serves as the Vicar for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs for the Brooklyn Diocese.
Fr. Lynch said at a time when so many are in mourning, “Memorial for Us All” provides more than music.
“We can help people of all faiths or no faith or who are struggling with their faith to face the reality of death, the crisis of COVID, honor the dead together and live in hope together,” Fr. Lynch said.
Originally Lincoln Center had planned on premiering only four memorials but has since decided to extend the series. On Mother’s Day, world-renowned celloist Yo-Yo Ma will be performing.
NET-TV will broadcast these pre-recorded tributes at 6 p.m. The Tablet is a sponsor of “Memorial for Us All.”
To watch on The Tablet’s Facebook page, go to https://www.facebook.com/thetablet.
To watch on NET TV’s page, go to https://www.facebook.com/NETTVny.
Viewers can submit names to “Memorial for Us All” at lincolncenter.org.