ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 16 * * All Arts News On the Web * * January 12, 2012


      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, and at the Bayside in St Albans Town most Sunday afternoons.
     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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      Fairfax Community Theater Company will hold open auditions for Flavors of Love tomorrow and Saturday United Church of Fairfax. Auditions are at 7 p.m. tomorrow evening and 3 p.m. Saturday afternoon.
      The production will be a cabaret-style musical review so they want "performers who can flirt with the audience while singing romantic songs from Broadway or reading romantic poetry." Singers should bring any song and be prepared to sing from People Will Say We're In Love.
      Call 802-363-1336 or click here for more info.


ESSEX JUNCTION--Backstage Pub presents Justice rolling their rock on Saturday at 9:30 p.m. The band is Chris Fleury, lead vocals and drums; Scott Belisle on bass and backup vocals; Todd Dunn, lead and rhythm guitar; and Scott Guptill, rhythm guitar and backup vocals.
      Call 802.878.5494 for more info.

MONTPELIER--Summit School presents the second annual Winter Folk Music Festival Saturday and Sunday around downtown Montpelier. The event features Sheesham and Lotus, Pete Sutherland, Jeremiah McLane and Sarah Blair, Mayfly, the Speckers, and Brendan Taffe in a weekend of workshops, performances and jam sessions.
      Email or click here for the festival schedule and tickets.

BURLINGTON--The UVM Old Time Music Club hosts a Shape Note Sing in Ira Allen Chapel at UVM every Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. Mason Gohl holds pitching/leading/sight-reading lessons before the Sing at 6 p.m. Check for occasional changes in time, date and location. Email for more info.

MORRISVILLE--River Arts holds a Farmers and Artisans Market at the River Arts Center every Wednesday from 3 - 7 p.m. Click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--Chow Bella offers Music to Dine By with relaxed music and the arts. They may have live piano, violin, or light guitar any day of the week. The Chow! Cabaret offers live performances by musicians, visual artists, poets, and more
      Call 802.524.1405, email, or click here for more info or booking requests.


      2012 will be another busy year in the arts with over 250 concerts, exhibits, recitals, and shows from more than 40 organizations. This column finishes our roundup of the Other Major Presenters around Franklin County.

      The AAC helps promote many other Franklin County presenters and individual artists. Our regularly updated online calendar is found at
      Art in Bloom Festival will bring a day of music, a gazillion exhibits, and plenty of food to Swanson's Farm and Nursery in Fairfax in July.
      Bay Day will celebrate on July 1 this year with continuous entertainment and family activities all day plus a Summer Sounds concert and fireworks to cap this Independence Day blowout.
      Fairfax Community Theater Company will stage Flavors of Love, A Celebration of Romance in Word and Song, in February at the Brick Meeting House; auditions are this weekend. They have Charlotte's Web in July and Short & Sweet -- 0riginal works by local authors in the Fall. This is the FCTC's 21st season.
      The company needs directors, actors, stage hands, and more. This is your chance to join one of the great community troupes and to stage work that you want to do. Email or click here for more info.
      Franklin County Court Diversion's popular fifth annual fundraiser, the Mardi Gras Party at Chow! Bella will be held in March. The dinner and dance will feature The Fabulous Spiders.
      Island Arts has brought arts activities to Grand Isle County for almost 30 years. This year they will have wide ranging concerts, theater performances, and craft fairs for children and adults including Island Arts Academy 2012, Honoring Native Ways and a Yang Bao Piano Concert in August. The group needs Island Arts Academy Instructors with a "particular passion ... to share with others." Any activity/hobby from visual arts, music, dance, photography, to theater is fair game. Click here for more info.
      County-wide, our public Libraries have a slew of plans including readings, lunchtime concerts, art shows, and kids' performers.
      The eclectic Music at Grace series at Grace Church in Sheldon will offer exceptional performers to Franklin County for several concerts this summer and fall including the 11th annual Farewell Reunion concert, a perennial favorite, which kicks off the series on May 25.
      Restaurants in and beyond Franklin County have our art on the walls and music in the halls. Chow!Bella will continue to feature artists and exceptional music. The Bayside, On Tap at the Lincoln Inn, and Overstreet all have a regular roster of Franklin County musicians.
      The St. Albans Historical Museum will have a lineup of performances, exhibits, and educational programs in the third-floor Bliss auditorium. Click here in the Spring for more info.
      The Northern Vermont Artist Association has a new Fletcher Free Library show in February, the two-month long, non-juried show at the Red Mill Gallery in Jericho, the famous June Juried Show at the Visions Of Vermont Gallery, and several other venues including an online gallery. Click here for more details.
      School art shows should include FNESU's annual Art Gala and the annual FCSU Art Show. The shows bring together hundreds of two and three dimensional pieces in schools and halls around the County.
      The Vermont Youth Orchestra programs include three orchestras, three ensembles, and two choruses. They teach and showcase over 500 students of all levels of musical ability from Vermont, NY, and New Hampshire. The VYO Winter Concert takes place this month. Click here for more info.
      Young Tradition-Vermont and Fiddleheads have a monthly lineup planned that started with a contra dance last week and continues with Young Tradition Showcase, the Bright Wings Chorus, Dirk Powell and Riley Baugus, the Irregulars in February, the UVM Folk Music Festival in March, Peggy Seeger and Greg Brown in April, the Young Tradition Weekend and the Farewell Reunion in May, Trad Camp and more. Fiddleheads will hold a number of benefit events and will play at Chocolate by the Pound in March. The Young Tradition Weekend featuring players, singers and dancers from Franklin County and many other places.


     Jeff Moreau "treated [himself] to a nice DSLR Camera set-up and plans to reengage in video and still photography." The railroad image is a painting by his father of the St. Albans Railroad. He will have a limited number of prints available for sale. The site has a slideshow gallery of images, a biography, and contact info.


      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 © 2012 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).
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