This was Flatbush as Mr. Nathanson had known it as a boy and as he wishes to recreate it, dowager Victorians and prewar buildings and Little Pakistan and West Indian communities overlapping with Black and white homeowners, streets running beneath canopies of sycamores and oaks. He grew up here a working-class kid in a chaotic family until he rode the subway into the city and settled in the East Village. — NY Times

Late March 2020, in a Covid shuttered NYC, saxophonist Roy Nathanson set out onto his 2nd-story Brooklyn porch at 5 PM to play “Amazing Grace.” Roy’s musician neighbors heard the call and joined him on the Flatbush sidewalk to improvise and share the music together. After 82 consecutive days of 5pm concerts with an expanding local audience, the musicians created a program for local youth who were unable to do much of anything during the lockdown. Making music together under the supervision of professional musicians revealed a remarkable balm for the Covid blues.

The first season culminated with a musical procession down Marlborough Road in a performance piece called “World of Fire” in which students performed their own interpretations of Roy’s composition.