Make Music


Group of 3 child musicians perform with an adult guitarist surrounded by smoke and cool lighting.

What is Make Music Hartford?

Make Music Hartford is a part of the international Make Music Day movement which brings free, community-wide, outdoor musical celebrations to hundreds of cities worldwide! Every year, the celebration is held on June 21, the summer solstice, in more than 1,000 communities around the world.

Make Music Hartford will feature musicians of all abilities and music from any genre. Sidewalks, parks, front porches, and public spaces throughout the city will become stages for local musicians to perform and for all to enjoy. Everyone is invited to participate in this international day of music by performing, providing an outdoor space, appreciating, or volunteering. It’s all for the love of music!

Make Music Hartford is brought to you by the Greater Hartford Arts Council as part of our mission to inspire all people to participate and invest in the arts.


Make Music Hartford returns on June 21, 2020!

Make Music Hartford returns in 2020, but it will look a little different. Due to COVID-19, many of the events we planned for this year’s event will not be able to take place while others will become virtual experiences you can enjoy from home.

How Can You Participate?

Make Music Hartford is a virtual event in 2020.  

Below you will find a variety of events that have been coordinated for Make Music Hartford 2020. This is a virtual event happening on various platforms. As musicians release music on Make Music Day (June 21st) the Greater Hartford Arts Council will share posts on social media and here on our Make Music Hartford website.

You can follow us on Facebook and Instagram to see what we share!


Participate in Special Events in Hartford and Beyond!

A number of special events will be hosted by the Greater Hartford Arts Council as well as community partners around Hartford and around the world. Information about how to participate in events like Bash the Trash, Flowerpot Music, the World’s Smallest Marching Band, and more can be found below. More events will be added between now and June 21st.


Local musicians cover each others songs in this song swap happening around the world. Check out who is representing Hartford area musicians HERE.

25×12 Live Online Lessons

Music teachers around the world will offer 12 hours of free, online group lessons for 25 different instruments. Join a number of Hartford area music teachers as they lead internationally streamed lessons in various instruments. Find the listing of Hartford teachers and more HERE.

Bash the Trash

Join our virtual Bash the Trash Instrument Making Party! We have videos and how-to guides on how to turn items you would normally throw away into cool sounding instruments. Give the a try and share a video with us! Find tutorials HERE.

Flowerpot Music

Hartford’s performance of Flowerpot Music, composed by Elliot Cole, is going international! Tune in for an internationally live-streamed performance of bell-like tones that pass from performer to performer in improvised gestures on flower pots! An ensemble of Hartford-area musicians and community members will perform from 11:40am – 12pm on June 21st. Watch them live HERE.

Live from Home Challenge

In partnership with Make Music Australia Make Music China, and the Make Music Alliance we invite everyone to post a musical performance from home on June 21, and tag three friends to challenge them to do the same. More info HERE.

Takeout and Takeover

In a time when to-go orders may be more common than dine-in experiences at restaurants, we’re launching Takeout and Takeover. Restaurants serving takeout orders can register their social media channel as a “venue” for local musicians to “takeover” on June 21st in celebration of Make Music Hartford. Enjoy takeout from your favorite Hartford restaurant while enjoying a jazz concert from their Instagram account or a growler from your local brewery while tuning into their Facebook Live. Register your virtual venue or sign up to be a musician HERE.

This American Song

This American Song is a new Make Music Day initiative, capturing the stories and experiences of ordinary people from around the country at this unprecedented moment in time. The national Make Music Alliance has lined up 50 people of all ages with a story to tell, one in each of the 50 States, along with fifty professional songwriters in a variety of styles. On the morning of June 21, each songwriter will video chat with one interviewee, write a song inspired by their conversation, and then give a live, private performance of the song they’ve just written by the end of the day. Afterwards, videos of all fifty songs will be available, opening a window into American lives and showing the power of music to connect us all.

Window Serenades

This Make Music Day, musicians from the Hartford region and around the country are organizing to share live music with our most isolated neighbors. Selected nursing homes, and other facilities for vulnerable populations who are unable to leave their homes, are working with local Make Music chapters (like us!) to invite musicians to serenade residents from outside their windows, while practicing social distancing. Find out who is participating and where HERE.

World’s Smallest Marching Band

Small groups of brass and percussion players will parade through city parks on June 21st. Musicians will be in Bushnell Park and Riverfront Recapture/Riverside Park. See who’s marching and where you can find them: HERE.

World Wide Heart Chant

The Heart Chant is a space for meditation and healing. The Heart Chant is one of composer Pauline Oliveros’s “Deep Listening” meditations, her practice of “listening in every possible way to everything possible, to hear no matter what you are doing.” Written in response to the terrorist attacks on September 11th, 2001, the Heart Chant‘s simple instructions invite any and all to participate in creating community through sound. No musical training is required. Join a community from around the world at 5pm EST on June 21st in a World Wide Heart Chant. RSVP HERE

Virtual Shower Singing

You read that correctly! It’s time to release your inner diva with Virtual Shower Singing. Share your vocals with us before Make Music Day. Details on how to show us your talent are HERE.



Souls of' Zion perform with lead singer Prince at the center.

Make Music Hartford 2020 Sponsors

Connecticut: Department of Economic and Community Development Office of the Arts logo

with the support of the Department of Economic and Community Development, Office of the Arts, which also receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency

Jam Session Sponsor

  • Bouvier Insurance
  • Trinity College

Make Music Hartford 2020 Sponsorship Opportunities Available!

Your support makes programs like Make Music Hartford possible. Discover branding opportunities for your company and help us connect people through music.
Interested in becoming a sponsor? Contact Roxane Sanders rsanders[at]


Make Music Hartford is a program of the Greater Hartford Arts Council, a non-profit organization whose mission is to inspire all people to participate and invest in the arts. Help us make events like Make Music Hartford possible.
Donate Today

Tip a Musician Tuesdays

Every 3rd Tuesday of the month add some much needed funds to local musicians’ virtual tip jars!

Tip a Musician

Thank you to the Make Music Hartford 2020 Committee

  • Charmagne Glass-Tripp
  • Dwayne Keith
  • Dylan Healy
  • Kirk Woodard
  • Nelson Bello
  • Noa Michaud
  • Quoron Walker
  • Steve Cusano
  • Thien Nguyen
  • Zoe Chatfield

Are you interested in helping us plan Make Music Hartford? Contact city administrator, Amanda Roy, for more information on how you can be involved.



Special thanks to the volunteer photographers who helped capture Make Music Hartford in photos and videos: 

  • Denis Semenyaka
  • Dana Lynne Montanari
  • Ron White
  • Ray Shaw
  • Andres Calixto
  • Dwight Hatch
  • Evan Thomas
  • Haley Comstock
  • Heather Martin
  • Joseph Engberg
  • Steve Carlsberg


Scott’s Jamaican Bakery: Faces of #MakeMusicHartford

June 19, 2019

“We bake with love” is the motto for Scotts’ Jamaican Bakery. What more could you ask for in a longtime local business? For over 40 years, the Scott family bakery has been a staple in capital region cuisine with what started with one flagship bakery that expanded into three total branches. It only made sense toContinue Reading »

Nelson Bello: Faces of #MakeMusicHartford

June 17, 2019

Nelson Bello has certainly made the rounds. As an alumnus of both the original Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts and a student of Jackie McLean, Nelson has made a career out of collaborating. In addition to being an active recording artist, he serves as both accompanist and bandleader in several groups in the regionalContinue Reading »

Kirk Woodard: Faces of Make Music Hartford

June 16, 2019

If you’ve made it out to Black-Eyed Sally’s for a Jazz Monday, chances are you’ve seen Kirk play. If you’ve attended events with a jazz trio, your chances are even higher. Essentially, Kirk is one of Hartford’s go-to drummers for all things jazz. Having just graduated from The Hartt School’s inaugural Master of Music inContinue Reading »

Older Entries »


Hartford Courant:Sounds of summer: Hartford’s Make music 2019 celebration had the city singing” (June 21, 2019) 

WTNH: Make Music Hartford Bigger Than Ever ” (June 20, 2019) 

Hartford Courant:Make Music Hartford Celebrating the winter solstice with parade, concerts, drink specials at area bars” (December 17, 2018)

National Make Music Winter Press Release: Make Music Winter to Expand Nationwide This December 21” (October 17, 2018)

Hartford Courant:Hartford Joins Global Make Music Day with Concerts Around the City” (June 21, 2018)

Hartford Courant:Music to Fill the Streets as Connecticut Joins Global Make Music Day” (June 18, 2018)

USA Today:Where to Celebrate Make Music Day Across the Country” (June 15, 2018)

Patch:Free Concerts Set for Make Music Day in West Hartford” (June 15, 2018)

Billboard Magazine:Make Music Day To Return This Summer With More Than 4,500 Concerts” (April 4, 2018)

Rolling Stone:‘Make Music Day’ Plots 4,500 Free Events, Concerts Nationwide” (April 3, 2018)

National Make Music Day Press Release:Make Music Day 2018 Returns On Thursday, June 21” (March 28, 2018)

Hartford Courant:Connecticut to Join Global Make Music Day” (March 14, 2018)

WILI 95.3 FM, Windham Arts Radio Review: Interview with Aaron Friedman of the Make Music Alliance (February 28, 2018)

Make Music Alliance: “Media Resources



Amanda Roy playing the drums.

Get in touch with us…

Amanda Roy
Director of Community Impact
Greater Hartford Arts Council