ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 7 * * All Arts News On the Web * * February 6, 2003


      ArtBits always features a calendar of the goings on of Franklin County artists. Check out these events around Franklin County. Each issue includes the entire text of our weekly newspaper column.

      Stop in for the AAC CoffeeHouses at 7 p.m. on the second and fourth Wednesday of every month. These gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and workshops. We come together on the second Wednesday for a booked musical performance and an art exhibit at Simple Pleasures in St Albans. On the fourth Wednesday come to the Kept Writer in St Albans for acoustic Open Mike Night featuring music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.


      The Fairfax Community Theatre Company presents A.R. Gurney's Love Letters on Friday and Saturday evening in the Brick Meeting House in Westford.
      An acclaimed and popular playwright, Gurney captured the manners of upper-middle class WASP America with wit and grace in The Dining Room, The Cocktail Hour, and in Love Letters.
      This play traces the story of childhood friends Andrew Makepeace Ladd and Melissa Gardner. The characters read their letters and unfold the story of their bittersweet relationship to each other through marriages, children, affairs and, ultimately, death. Tom Townsend plays the staid and dutiful Andrew Makepeace Ladd, an attorney. Pamela Dewey is Melissa Gardner, a lively but unstable artist. Margie Cain directs and Kevin Christopher is the stage manager.
      It takes more than two actors to put on a play, but "in this case we were looking for something relatively simple to produce with a small cast and minimal rehearsal time," Tom Townsend said.
      Love Letters is an actor's play. "In this one in particular, everything comes from the voices," Mr. Townsend said. "The characters are reading the letters to each other. There's not the usual blocking considerations and there is trying to get the emotion, trying to make the characters into real people in less obvious ways."
      Albert Ramsdell Gurney, Jr. was born to a Buffalo society family, attended boarding school in New Hampshire, received a B.A. degree from Williams College, joined the U.S. Navy and wrote shows to entertain the troops during the Korean War, and studied at the Yale School of Drama. He is a member of the M.I.T. faculty. He wrote Love Letters in 1989. His other works include the Middle Ages, Show Me the Way to Go Home, and the Broadway production of Sweet Sue which starred Mary Tyler Moore and Lynn Redgrave.
      Please note that Love Letters contains mature themes and brief occurrences of adult language.
      The Brick Meeting House is home for a number of community organizations, from the Scouts to a play group to the players. "Back in 1997, we joined with them. It gives us performing and rehearsal space and we can contribute from our profits toward them," Mr. Townsend said. The house seats 75 or 80. "We have tight packed over 100. People were sitting in the window sills."
      The doors open at 7:15. Love Letters will begin each evening at 8 p.m. on February 7-8 in the Brick Meeting House on Route 128 in Westford Village. Tickets are $5.00 and will be available at the door. Some of the proceeds will contribute to the ongoing restoration of the Brick Meeting House.
      Call 849-2923, email E-mail or Click here.


ST. ALBANS--The Kept Writer presents rhythmic, acoustic singer/songwriter Ian Alexy from Plainfield with original jazz/folk songs and unique guitar work, Friday at 7 p.m.

FAIRFAX--The regular Music Session offers acoustic instrumentalists playing traditional songs at the Foothills Bakery on Saturday, 1-4:30 p.m. Admission is free by donation.


      Choreography has been copyrightable since 1978. Although a number of legal commentators have analyzed the new copyright protections, many questions remain unanswered for the dance community. This article provides an overview of this legal history in terms understandable to laymen and identifies the philosophical issues presented by the copyright of choreographic works.
      Copyright of Choreographic Works was written by Julie Van Camp, Professor and Chair, Department of Philosophy, California State University-Long Beach.


      Holly Sherman works at Barry Callebaut and lives with her husband, Anson, in East Highgate.

CURRENTLY READING: She just finished Legend by Jude Devereaux and has begun Quilting for People Who Still Don't Have Time to Quilt by Marti Michell.
      "The only trouble is that when I start to read a book, I don't do anything else," she said. "It's not that good for my home life, so I took a break from [fiction] and picked up on quilting. I'm interested in getting involved in a project with an aunt of mine. My mother wasn't a quilter so I have to teach myself. I like to read, so" that's a perfect match.

RE-READ: "Once I've read it, I know what happened and I don't reread books," she said.

FAVORITE KIDS' BOOK: Holly and Anson have daughters Monica, 4-1/2, and Erica, 6-1/2. "I love the Sandra Boynton," author of Horns to toes (and In Between), she said. "They were fun to read when the kids were younger."


      ArtBits features a quick weekly peek at the bookshelf or night stand 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.


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      This article was originally published in the St Albans Messenger and other traditional print media. It is Copyright © 2003 by Richard B. Harper. All rights reserved. Archival material is provided as-is. Links are not necessarily maintained (if a link in this article fails, try or your favorite search engine).
      Thanks to recent misuse of copyright material on the Internet by individuals and archival firms alike, we emphasize that your rights to this article are limited to viewing it and printing it for personal use only. You must receive explicit permission from the All Arts Council and the author before reprinting or redistributing this article in any medium.