ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 12 * * All Arts News On the Web * * May 29, 2008


      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!

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      Summer Music at Grace begins the 2008 season with the sixth annual Farewell Reunion Concert tomorrow evening at 7:30 p.m. at Grace Church in Sheldon. The concert is a benefit for the Tom Sustic Scholarship Fund.
      Mark Sustic hosts the Franklin County musical tradition. The eclectic concert will feature Matt Bean, Bread and Bones, Michele and Fabio Choiniere, Roland Clark, Hannah Carr, Glass of Water, Frank Heyburn, Tom MacKenzie, Jim McGinniss, Will Patton and the Fabulous Spiders, Doug Perkins and Kristina Stykos, Anna Roberts-Gevalt, Pria Schwall-Kierney, Pete and Karen Sutherland and many more.
      Bread and Bones is an acoustic folk trio made up of award-winning songwriter and baritone Richard Ruane on guitar, mandolin, banjo and ukulele; alto vocalist Beth Duquette, and Mitch Barron on double bass, fretless electric and vocals.
      Singer-songwriter Michele Choiniere began performing traditional Franco-American music with her father, harmonica player Fabio Choiniere, as a child. Her performances blend traditional folk songs, original compositions, jazz standards, and covers.
      Young fiddler Roland Clark was concertmaster of the Vermont Youth Sinfonia. He appeared at Higher Ground in Burlington with the Yonder Mountain String Band and makes regular guest appearances with the Mud City Ramblers and Bob Degree and the Bluegrass Storm. He has played the part of the fiddler in Fiddler on the Roof.
      Glass of Water's Emily Steele Hurst and Sophia Smith-Savedoff sing traditional and traditional-inspired songs from New England, Appalachia, and the British Isles, all arranged for two a capella voices.
      Frank Heyburn is well known as a New England fiddler who plays Quebecois, Scottish, and Irish styles. He lives in Waterville, Vermont, with his wife Michele Lajoie and two children.
      Tom MacKenzie has been a musician for most of his life. His Banjo, Hammered Dulcimer, Guitar, Keyboard, and Ukulele bring to life the world of traditional music from French Canadian to American Old Time to Scandinavian to Ragtime to Classical. He has been known to play the Clarinet Polka on the Dulcimer and Hall of the Mountain King on Banjo right in Highgate.
      Jim McGinniss on the guitar and upright bass is strongly influenced by music from the Appalachian Mountains.
      The Fabulous Spiders, Pat LeBoeuf, Marcia Brewster, and Debbie Patton with Will Patton on strings, have been singing together for more than 25 years with a repertoire from Motown, jazz standards, and folk tunes, to a capella doo-wop.
      Doug Perkins is best known for his role in the newgrass band Smokin' Grass. Kristina Stykos began playing solo gigs in Massachusetts clubs and restaurants, took time off, then founded Live Art to bring national folk music to central Vermont.
      Anna Roberts-Gevalt plays fiddle and banjo but is often seen with a playing washboard, double bass, guitar, and kazoo.
      Pete and Karen Sutherland are known for traditional music, songwriting, and joy. Singer and multi-instrumentalist Pete Sutherland brings life to his originals as well as age-old ballads and fiddle tunes.
      A potluck dinner with live music begins at 6 p.m.
      Admission is a $10 suggested donation at the door. The proceeds benefit the Tom Sustic Scholarship Fund; the Tom Fund awards scholarship assistance to Franklin County high school seniors who plan to become teachers of young children.
      The concert is presented with support from the All Arts Council of Franklin County, Events for Tom, Foothills Bakery, Franklin County Early Childhood Programs, Messenger Print and Design, Mousetrap Pediatrics, Northwestern Medical Center, People’s Trust Company, and Vermont Tent Company.
      Call Mark Sustic (802.849.6968) or email for more info about the concert. Click here for more info about the Summer Music at Grace series.


      Do you like live music?
      Do you want to relive it?
      Buy at least one CD by one of the performers in this week's events. That is the best way to support our local musicians and to keep the music playing at home.


BURLINGTON--Art's Alive presents the Sidewalk Chalk Pastel Competition in City Hall Park on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The competition "celebrates 'live' art on a temporary canvas, allowing artists of all abilities to participate."
      Artists may bring a photo or other copy of an original or other artwork to reproduce.
      Each artist will work a five foot square of sidewalk and will receive a set of chalk pastels for their use during the event (while supplies last--arrive early, folks). Participants may work individually or as teams. Reproductions of masterpieces are permitted.
      Prizes will be awarded in four categories: Adult, Youth 15 to 18, Youth 11 to 14, and Youth 7 to 10. Judging will take place at 4 p.m. with the awards made at 4:30 p.m.
      The Sidewalk Chalk Pastel Competition is open and free to the public. The event is produced by Kasini House and is underwritten by the Main Street Landing Company and sponsored by Dore & Whittier Architects, Freeman French Freeman Architects, Black Horse Fine Art Supply, and the Discover Jazz Festival. Email for more info.

RANDOLPH--Imagining the Future, a new show at the Gallery at Chandler, features artists Brooke Burgee, Paul Calter, and George Lawrence. Ms. Burgee will hold free public artist demonstrations on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
      The show continues through June 22. Click here for more info.


BRATTLEBORO--First Sundays presents Balkan dancing with Xopo (Anna Patton plus Miamon Miller, Becky Ashenden, Chuck Corman, Barbara Blumenthal and Joe Blumenthal) at the Church in Brattleboro on Sunday at 7 p.m. Admission is $8-12. and soft soled shoes are required.
      The First Sundays series runs from April through December. Call 802.257.9513 or email for more info.

BARRE--L.A.C.E. presents Paris Bathtub (Don Haley, Noah Hahn and Tim Lang) on Sunday at 11 a.m. This has nothing to do with Franklin County but I liked the name (they play freak-folk mando-accordion jazz). Mr. Haley and Mr. Hahn were the original Lovesick Bandits. Click here for more info.


     Vermont artist Charles Meunier of Swanton has organized his site into three basic galleries featuring drawings, paintings, and photographs. "This web site," he wrote, "is a testimony to these shifts of interest in different art mediums, but exhibits the same basic concerns for the questions of composition and thematic content - some social, some intellectual and emotional, some chromatic."


      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 © 2008 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.