ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 11 * * All Arts News On the Web * * August 23, 2007


      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 live music and more at the Fairfax Music Sessions at the Foothills Bakery in Fairfax most Saturday afternoons at 1 p.m., at various restaurants around Franklin County throughout the week, at the Bayside in St Albans Town most Sunday afternoons, and the Cambridge CoffeeHouses at 7 p.m. on the first and third Wednesday of every month.
     These gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and occasional workshops. The booked performances and acoustic Open Mike Nights feature music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.

      Find links to these events and more in our Spotlight!


      Sometimes it feels as if "All the News that Fits" is the slogan for this column. It has been a busy summer in the arts, particularly with so many performances in so many places; that meant the summer entertainment page(s) have been packed. It also means my coverage of some events has been later than I would like.
      In the coming weeks, I will continue the reports on the Art Center project, profile some interesting people in the arts, and look for new art every month on walls around the County.


ENOSBURG FALLS--The Artist-in-Residence Cooperative Gallery has four featured artists for August with over 45 pieces on exhibit. This month, the spotlight is on Melissa Haberman, Natalie LaRocque-Bouchard, Beth McAdams, and Maggy Young.
      Ms. Haberman works mostly in oil on canvas or board as well as wood block printing. Her work is semi-abstract. Ms. LaRocque-Bouchard has two large paintings and 11 digital photographs on exhibit. One wildlife painting is a deer and one is a new abstract. Ms. McAdams works primarily in watercolor and occasionally in acrylic on paper with realistic and abstract techniques. Her work includes animals and architectural themes. Ms. Young, a photographer, shows Vermont landscapes and portraits as well a variety of woven baskets and sculpture.
      The Artist in Residence art cooperative offers paintings, fiber arts, stained glass, sculpture, lamps, pottery, folk art boxes, scarves, hats and more by Franklin County and surrounding area artists. It is owned and operated by the artists and sponsors. The Village Frame Shoppe is located within the coop as a resident framer. The Blue Crayon, a small private studio in the building, is available for individual or small group lessons. The gallery, located at 349 Main Street, is open Wednesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call 802.933.6304 for more info.


ESSEX JUNCTION--The Lincoln Inn presents Jenni Johnson and Friends this evening at 7 p.m. and the Starline Rhythm Boys tomorrow at 9 p.m. Jenni Johnson will jazz up the blues. This active Vermont Arts Council Touring Artist is a favorite here as a regular performer in the AAC Summer Sounds, Discover Jazz, First Night, and at ChowBella! The Starline Rhythm Boys include singer and rhythmic foundation Danny Coane, songwriter Billy Bratcher on upright bass, and Al Lemery on guitar and harmony vocals.
      Call 878-3309 or click here for more info.

SUMMER MUSIC AT GRACE--Rebecca Hall and Ken Anderson returns to the popular Summer Music series tomorrow evening at 7:30 p.m. This concert will feature their folk, blues, and bluegrass originals.
      Rebecca Hallís songs combine the feel of the ancient ballads of the British Isles and their Appalachian counterparts with Ken Andersonís old-school musical arrangements and Ď60s pop harmonies. They call their style "retro folk."
      Grace Church is located at 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon. The suggested donation of $10 for adults or $5 for youth/seniors benefits the performers. Call 802.326.4603 or click here for more info about the Summer Music at Grace series and performers.

WILLISTON--The Dorothy Ailing Library presents Michele Choinere and Deb Flanders Saturday from 11 a.m. to 12 noon. Email Chris Rottler for more info.

ESSEX JUNCTION--The Champlain Valley Fair presents Jim Branca and his Mystic Mojo Music wailing on for kids (and their grown-ups) in three shows at noon, 2 p.m., and 4:30 p.m. on Satudray in the Ware Building (right near Gate "A")

ST. ALBANS--The St. Albans Concert Series the Chevaliers in concert in the Edric A. Loomis Memorial Band Shell on Sunday at 7 p.m. The concert features family harmonies in a program ranging from the Beatles to Chicago to Roberta Flack to the Mammas and the Pappas.
      Admission is free. The rain site is City Hall.


     The 2007 Summer Sounds concert series concluded in Highgate Sunday evening. Despite a rainy summer, we were blessed with good weather each Sunday evening. The series is presented in the community by the community. It depends on taxpayer and local business support. The concerts were sponsored this season by the Town of Highgate, the Town of St. Albans, and the All Arts Council, and underwritten by Chevalier Drilling, Desorcie's Market, O. C. McCuin & Sons, Pete Paquette Real Estate & Development, Ray's Extrusion Dies & Tubing, Scotty's Taxi, Sticks & Stuff, and The Tyler Place. There were no Summer Sounds concerts in St. Albans City in 2007.
      The 17th season featured the blues, bluegrass, jazz, classic rock, zydeco, and introduced an old favorite playing new music when Tammy Fletcher brought out her Mountain Girl for the first time here. Performers came from around Vermont, including Jim Branca and his Mystic Mojo Music, Ted Crosby's Young Vermont All Stars, Mango Jam, Rumble Doll, Shellhouse, Sky Blue Boys, Small Axe, and Ms. Fletcher. It was the first Franklin County appearance for Ted Crosby's group, Rumble Doll, and Small Axe.
      Before and during each concert, the Summer Sounds Dessert in the Park social was a chance to visit with friends, and to eat finger foods and sweet delights. The social is also a way to introduce community groups to the community. If your group wants to host a concert next year, email the All Arts Council for info.
      The community based All Arts Council brings the performing arts to northwestern Vermont. The 18th season of concerts will resume in 2008, always on Sunday evenings, always at 7 p.m., always in a Town Park, and always free.


     Crabgrass Puppet Theater has twenty-five years experience performing for children and family audiences in theaters, museums and schools. Coming in October, 2007: The Day It Snowed Tortillas. The site includes booking and contacts, performances, photos, and the all-important info about Crabgrass and Crabgrass notes.


      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 © 2007 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.