ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 2 NUMBER 7 * * All Arts News On the Web * * JULY, 1998


      Important Meeting Notice: There will be no AAC networking meeting in July. Instead, the Arts Council will invite everyone to a summer party later in the month. Watch this space for details.


      Summer Sounds '98 will produce 16 live free concerts every Sunday evening all summer long. The regular Sunday concerts alternate between the Highgate Municipal Park and Taylor Park in St Albans. The special Bonus Summer Sounds series adds concerts in Enosburg, Franklin, and Richford.
      Each summer concert is free. Settle in on your own blanket or lawn chair and enjoy outdoor family music. The lineup includes a medley of bluegrass, classical, country, pop, and classic rock-n-roll. Bring your own bug spray.
      Although each concert begins at 7 p.m., you will want to arrive earlier because our outdoor concerts usually include a social. Local community groups will host each concert with special activities, family fun, and food. Look for delicious delectables starting around 6 p.m. each Sunday.
      Summer Sounds concerts are always in a Town park, always on Sunday evenings at 7:00 p.m., and always free. The rain site is the Methodist Church in Highgate, the Congregational Church in St Albans, the Town Hall in Franklin, and sites tba in Enosburg and Richford.
      Check out the AAC calendar and read more about Summer Sounds.


      Valerie Ugro of Fairfax is the AAC Feature Artist for July at the AAC Gallery at the Gift Gallery, 58 North Main Street, St Albans. Her watercolor paintings and prints include a seven-piece series of the rooftops of Fairfax. The showing continues through July 31 and is open 10 a.m.-5 p.m.Tuesday-Saturday.


      The Montgomery Historical Society hosts four summer performances by classical and jazz musicians each summer. Concerts by the Common presents the Craftsbury Chamber Players, returning for their 10th appearance on Saturday July 11. The program will include baroque works and features Bach's Brandenburg Concerto #5. An outdoor reception with refreshments begins at 7 p.m and a "meet the artist" reception follows at the Black Lantern.
     Saturday, July 25, the series welcomes Nathaniel Rosen, cellist, gold medalist in the 1978 Tchaikovsky Competition, student of the legendary Piatigorsky, and international acclaimed soloist.
      All concerts will be held on Saturdays at 8 p.m. in Pratt Hall in Montgomery Village, opposite the Black Lantern Inn. Tickets are on sale now. Call 326-4404 for information.

      Starting at noon on Sunday July 12, The Boonys, the Franklin County Brewery, Coca Cola, and the BD Press present a Blues Fest Live at the Boonys, a benefit concert for the Franklin Fire Department. The lineup includes Studebaker John and the Hawks from Chicago, the Nobby Reed Project, Blues for Breakfast, the Bruce Keller Blues Band, Jesse Potts, and Harmonica master Mark Lavoie.
      The full day of music starts at noon at The Boonys on Route 236 (the State Park Road) in Franklin. Plan on a finger lickin' barbecue and fun stuff for all ages. There will be crafts and fine arts on display and for sale. Eric has also set up a kids corral with balls, toys, and playthings. Don't forget to wear your blues (jeans).
      Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the gate. Kids under 10 are free. Call 933-4569 for information and reservations.

      Sunday July 19 in Highgate begins with the fifth annual WINGS and WHEELS festival. World Champion aerobatic pilot Zoltan Veres and Vermont's own Jim Parker will return. The show also features flying contests, spot jumping, aircraft and military equipment, cruisers, hot rodders, antiques and popular cars, as well as antique tractors and model airplanes. And plenty of food. Franklin County Airport in Highgate, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

      The Summer Ministry of the Arts presents the second of three Pipe Dreams concerts on Sunday July 19 in the historic St John's Episcopal Church on the Green in Highgate Falls. Kevin Davis, organist at Grace Congregational in Rutland, will play the refurbished pipe organ beginning at 3:30 p.m. Evensong precedes the concerts at 3 p.m.

      The sixth annual Jig in the Valley begins at noon on Saturday July 25 at the East Fairfield Community Center. The Zephyrs, John Cassel, Lost Nation Valley, the Nobby Reed Project, the Throbulators, the Spyders, and Rhett Bovine and the Oleo Romeos will play until dusk in this benefit concert for the Community Center. Look for good food, good music, good dancing and good times. The artwork completed in the Expressions Art Camp will be shown all day.
      The Community Center includes a Health Center, plus pre-school, Head Start, Teen, and Senior Citizen programs and serves Bakersfield and greater Fairfield. Tickets are only $5. Call 827-3130 for information.


      The Fisk Farm Art Show will sponsor two AAC members in one-man shows in July and August. The converted horse barn (circa 1800) on Isle La Motte is the home of a summer series celebrating Vermont artists and artisans. The exhibits also feature an English Tea on the lawn overlooking Lake Champlain every Sunday afternoon.
      Renowned Vermont artist Corliss Blakely will show three new works of the Fisk Farm plus other new oil and watercolor paintings this Sunday, 1-5 p.m. "The grounds are beautiful stone buildings with archways," Corliss said, "with hollyhocks against all the buildings." This garden paradise is a living Corliss Blakely painting.
      Watercolor painter Valerie M. Ugro will maintain a permanent exhibit in the Art Barn this the summer. Her works include the architecture of the Fisk Farm and the Fisk Quarry. She is working on a new series of the scenes and architectural landmarks of Isle La Motte. Valerie's individual show of new watercolors and prints is August 2.
      Fisk Farm is four miles south of St Anne's Shrine, West Shore Road, Isle La Motte. Call 928-3364 for information.


      The Bethany's Children Foundation and the All Arts Council will present Summer Stage, a three- day workshop July 31-August 2 for actors age 11-18. This intense residency with Broadway's Bill Reed, actor Mark Nash, Lyric Theater's Doris O'Brien, and other professionals, lets kids develop voice, dance, and theater skills on the stage at MVU.
      Summer Stage is underwritten by a generous grant from the Bethany's Children Foundation, a new statewide organization dedicated to providing educational assemblies, workshops, and residencies in the Arts and Humanities in Vermont public schools. The program is sponsored by the Caring Community Committees in Franklin, Highgate, Sheldon, and Swanton, the Elks Lodge, Meyer's Bagels, Mountainview Printing, Northwest Medical Center, the St Albans Cooperative Creamery, the St Albans Messenger, the VFW-St Albans and Swanton, and radio WWSR/WLFE.
      We have room for a few more students. e-mail the All Arts Council for info.

      Expressions is a summer arts experience for teens. Teens can try a new skill or practice an old one in one, two, or three excellent programs. One project will be Graffiti Art, a new outdoor mural directed by AAC co-chair Natalie LaRocque-Bouchard. Visual Arts runs July 27-31; Music and Visual Arts will be held August 3-7; Music and Language Arts runs August 10-14. The deadline for the first St Albans Visual Arts program is Monday. Call Kristen Mahoney or Christine Bourque (524-6574) for information and to register.
      The Community Center and the Graffiti Art mural projects in Fairfield, St Albans, and Swanton still need teenaged artists.
      In East Fairfield, the Community Center project starts in mid-July and painting will begin July 27. In St Albans, the first of two murals will begin at the Houghton Park skateboard ramps in August. In Swanton, the mural will be painted at the Marble Mill Cafe in August. e-mail the All Arts Council for info.
      The summer arts program is sponsored by the New Connections Program, the Vermont Youth Development Corps, the All Arts Council, the Vermont Arts Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Franklin County Caring Communities Project, Fairfield Community Center, St Albans City and Town, BFA-St Albans, St Albans Recreation Department, and the Business Community of St Albans and Fairfield.

      I get fairly regular calls for jugglers, magicians, mimes and other artists with similar skills. If you have an act that's "ready for prime time," e-mail the All Arts Council

      We need information about you for the free AAC registry of Franklin County artists in all media (dance, fine arts, music, theater, and writing). Does your band have an album ready to release? Are you a sculptor wrking in bronze? A poet? Do you teach dance or violin?
      Our goal is to improve access to the performing and literary arts throughout Franklin County and to increase the opportunities for local artists. The register will publish your name and contact information for touring, shows, discussion groups, and Arts in Education residencies. Call me (868-3351) or e-mail the All Arts Council to register or to get more information.


      The third annual Arts and Eats Festival was held Saturday at Hamlen's Garden Center. The Festival introduced a competition for floral paintings, sculptures, and arrangements in any media.
      Celeste Pecor won first place with Eternal Iris, sculpted, hand-painted clay ware. Second place went to Josh Derner for Grandmother's Garden, a watercolor. Del Bransfield won third place in his first show with a wood carved, framed flower. Honorable mention prizes went to Patrice Havreluk-Hemingway for Red Poppy, a pastel; Sandra Vaillancourt for a 3D mixed media spiritual piece; Beth Maginn for a pen and ink and watercolor painting, and to Bob Brodeur with a photo of Wedding Roses in his first competition.
      The Franklin Lamoille Bank, Vermont National Bank, Dr. Frank Zsoldos, WWSR, Drinkwaters Jewelers, Hamlen's Garden Center, Hickok Associates Real Estate, and the AAC contributed the prizes. The show was especially elegant thanks to tablecloths from North Country Linen and tables from Highgate Recreation. The judges were Corliss Blakely and Mark Tougias.


      The National Museum of American Art at the Smithsonian Institution features Posters American Style!, a new on-line exhibition. Posters American Style explores the process of making the messages of advertising, commerce, propaganda, and patriotism. Poster artists find new approaches and add the unexpected to attract attention. This exhibit looks at the variations of design and technique that have demand action by focusing the our consciousness.
      The site also demonstrates how a poster is printed, answers questions about postermaking methods and techniques, and has activities that show design choices.
      Other NMAA on-line exhibits include Singular Impressions: The Monotype in America, American Photographs: The First Century, Themes and Perspectives in Recent Art, and the White House Collection of American Crafts.

      Handmade is a commercial gallery offering a changing exhibition featuring the work of one artist each month. Darla Diann Lewis, their July artist, is a muralist and portrait artist with public and commercial murals in Ohio and West Virginia. Her colors bleed together and grow into stories as she captures "moments of time allowing all to share and live that moment in their own special way."

      Marine art and songs fit a summer onboard or on beach. Peter McCracken's Guide to Maritime History at the University of North Carolina is a wide ranging site of links he has collected for several years. The Music, Art and Images page lists the Digital Folk Song Database, a nice ballad index, the River Scheldt Pilots Choir with an audio feed for shanties, several links to maritime paintings and drawings, photos of modern tallships and yachts, and many Lighthouse guides. Be warned: some of the images can take a long time to load.


      ArtBits features a quick weekly peek at the bookshelf or nightstand of the folks you know in and around Franklin County. That popular feature has a page of its own at the Franklin County Bookshelf here on the AAC site.


Dick Harper, Co-Chair

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