ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 19 * * All Arts News On the Web * * July 9, 2015


      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.

     Franklin County's arts and music gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and occasional workshops. There are also booked and acoustic Open Mic Nights that feature music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.

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FRANKLIN COUNTY--The Big Music Weeks of Summer start with a bang today as venues fill to bursting with musicians from all over. Summer Sounds plays its roots to celebrate 25 years of concerts in Highgate. Rocky Horror takes over St. Albans and it's so busy that some of our performers will have to leave town to find space to play! We find concerts in Bennington, Burlington, Essex Junction, Highgate Center, Highgate Springs, Sheldon, South Hero, St. Albans, Stowe, and Butte, Montana.


HIGHGATE--The All Arts Council and the Town of Highgate bring the 25th Summer Sounds back home to Highgate with more of the sounds of New Orleans on Sunday at 7 p.m.
  ArtBits News Photo    Each summer concert will bring back a group that played the first decade of this popular series. We first introduced a southern jazz band from northern Vermont in 1996:
      "Doctor Jazz and the Dixie Hot Shots really will spice up Highgate Municipal Park this Sunday, presented by O. C. McCuin Sons.
      "Here's the Doctor Jazz recipe: take the horns of economist Bill Wicker, blend the tailgate slide trombone of cyberpunk manager Bill Brislin; mix in the 'mustard out' National Guard clarinet of Jim Howley, and plunk in the banjo of Immigration's Noel Induni. Beat soundly on the tiny drum set, whistles, and kazoos of Professor Peter Bridge. Pour the mix quickly into the delicate tuba of gourmet business owner John Dahl, and sprinkle lightly with the 88 keys and oogha horn of IBM manager Andy Ellenberger.
      "Doctor Jazz and the Dixie Hot Shots deliver jazz wrapped with the with the labels of Louis Armstrong, Jelly Roll Morton, and Fats Waller. Their recipe is Dixieland jazz and it's cooking in Highgate. 'Guar-an-teed'."

      The lineup has changed a little since they first played but the music has just gotten better. Guitarist Hazen Martel of Highgate will open the concert.
      The Sheldon United Methodist Church social promises finger goodies and maybe even popcorn starting around 6:30 p.m.
      The Summer Sounds concerts are sponsored by the Town of Highgate and the All Arts Council, and underwritten by Chevalier Drilling, Desorcie's Market, Drummac Septic Service, O. C. McCuin & Sons, and Ray's Extrusion Dies Tubing.
      The community based All Arts Council brings the performing arts to northwestern Vermont. The concerts are always on Sunday evenings at 7 p.m., always in a town park, and always free. Bring a blanket or a lawn chair as you settle in to enjoy outdoor family music and festivities. click here for posters, the schedule, and more info.


ST. ALBANS--Fairfax Community Theater Company presents the Rocky Horror Picture Show with a live cast on stage in the Bliss Room of the St. Albans Historical Museum starting this evening at 8 p.m. The run continues both Friday and Saturday evenings.
      The musical tells the story of newly engaged couple who break down in and seek help at the castle of Dr. Frank-N-Furter the sweet transvestite from transsexual Transylvania unveiling his new creation, the muscle man named Rocky Horror. The annual Transylvanian conventioneers, and a few lost monsters, sing and dance through this campy salute to horror movies and sexual liberation with music, lyrics, and a book by Richard O'Brien.
      The FCTC production features Sarah Brooks as Magenta, Dave Buckley as Brad, Candice Bryan-Broe as Columbia, as Anthony Modugno Rocky, and Sam Caswell, Frank Cossaboom, Amanda Graves, Katie Grubb, Peter Harrington, San Harrington, Patrick Houle, Maureen Houston, Sarah Koshinsky, Ken Lagro, Jeremy Laroche, Hillary Loggins, Courtney Meunier, Megan Rose, Karan Saini, Siera Schultz, Holly Ray Sherrer, Catie Smith, Brianna Steber, Ben Tague, and Heather Wilson. Meg Cossaboom is director, with assistant director Margie Cain, producer Kathy Hoffman, choreographer Molly Hartman, technical director Jean Paterek, Animation/Program Design by Ben Patton, set designer Adam Tougas, and stage master Heather Wilson.
      Come in costume! Opening night includes an audience costume contest. Think you're the ultimate Rocky Horror fan? Show up in your best outfit and do the Time Warp -- you could win a fabulous prize!
      General admission is $20 and VIP tickets are available for $30. Tickets are available online or at the door. All tickets will be held at the door.


SWANTON--Fill Swanton with color in the Sidewalk Chalk Day on Saturday between 10am-2pm.
      The Swanton Arts Council and the Swanton Free Public Library will turn the village into a work of art. Collect sidewalk chalk for free at the Library.
      Call Becky Rupp (802.868.2879), email or click here for more info. And follow the council on Facebook.

ST ALBANS--The Northwestern Medical Center Gallery hosts photographer Jennifer Theoret this month. Ms. Theoret is exhibiting flowers, scenery, and prints of her acrylic paintings.
      "My photography is usually about something," she said, and she always tries to "get a little story." That gives a similarity to her work even if the subjects are different. She looks for the light, light that draws attention to subjects that might be ignored. She also focuses on Civil War re-enactors although not for this show.
      The show continues through the end of July.


SOUTH HERO--Come dance in the meadow at the Supercharged Snow Farm Vineyard with Carol Ann Jones and the Superchargers this evening at 6:30 p.m.
      The live summer concert music series presents a variety of music from classical to jazz to swing to bluegrass to classic rock. Concerts are held every Thursday evening from June to September, weather permitting. Picnicking begins at 5 p.m. and music starts at 6:30 p.m. Bring your own chairs and blankets. All concerts are free. Click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--The One Fed Summer Concert Series presents Them Nakeds this evening at 7 p.m.
      The Rock/Reggae/Alternative band is made up of Shaun Chevalier, guitar and vocals; Matt Chevalier, keyboard, guitar, and vocals; Tony Henry, bass; and Tim Rousselle, drums.
      The summer concert series has performers under the tents every Thursday, rain or shine.

ESSEX JUNCTION--Justice keeps their rock On Tap for Post 4th of July Shenanigans on Friday night at 9:30 p.m. With Gary Greeno, lead vocals; Scott Belisle on bass and backup vocals; Rod Bushey, lead guitar; Mike Stella, drums; and Scott Guptill, rhythm guitar and backup vocals; Justice will party Uncle Sam.
      Call 802.878.3309 or email for more info.

Thursday through Sunday
ST. ALBANS--Twiggs starts the week with Coon Hill John tonight at 7 p.m. Next up is Sammich on the Window Side on Friday at 7 p.m. Saturday brings Dayve Huckett in the Dining Room at 7 p.m.
      Sammich isn't your typical jam band but Dylan and Sam do bring free form improv and deeply rooted folk-rock music. Their off-the-cuff jams are grounded with crafted song writing.
      Call 802.524.1405 or click here for more info or booking requests.

ST. ALBANS--A&M Rocks the Downtown Summer Concert Series in the E.A. Loomis Bandshell in Taylor Park on Friday at 5:30 p.m.
      Aaron Bachelder on guitar and Melinda Lussier on piano will play a mix of classic rock to modern tunes as well as a growing number of originals.
      The concert is free. Food and drink will be available.

BENNINGTON--The Bennington Museum Summer Party features the Woods Tea Company on Friday at 6 p.m.
      The group synonymous with New England since the 1980s play smooth sea shanties, folk songs, Celtic tunes, and rowdy Irish drinking songs. People have come and gone and the music has evolved, but the spirit of fun continues with Pete Sutherland, Patty Casey, and Howard Wooden of St. Albans.
      Admission is $35 for members and $45 for "not-yet-members." Call 802.447.1571 or click here for more info.

STOWE--Harrison's on Main Street has classic country pickin' & singin' with string magician Will Patton and ace flatpicker Mark Struhsacker on Friday at 6:30 p.m.

SHELDON--Summer Music at Grace continues with AnimA at the Grace Church on Friday at 7:30 p.m.
      The all-female a capella ensemble travels back in time to sing of Flowers in the Field, medieval and renaissance music plus a few original compositions, in celebration of summer's verdure and bounty.
      The group of 12 women was founded by artistic director Liz Thompson to sing the music of Hildegard von Bingen in 1988.
      There is no cookout or potluck this year.
      Admission is a $15 suggested donation at the door; there are no advance tickets.
      Click here for more info about the series and here for more info about the group.

BURLINGTON--Zen Lounge has the Saturday Blues with the Nobby Reed Project making their first lounging appearance at 8 p.m. Vermont's own blues trio includes Eric Belrose, percussion, Ray Bushey, bass, and Mr. Reed on lead guitar and vocals.

BUTTE, MONTANA--The Montana Folk Festival hosts Michele Choiniere with the Don Roy Ensemble on in the Dance Pavilion Saturday at noon and Sunday on the Original Stage at 2:30 and the Broadway Stage at 5 p.m.
      Champion fiddler Don Roy has roots deep in the Maritimes and Quebec, and a passion lies for the French Canadian tradition as well as Celtic music. Vermont's Michele Choiniere is a Franco-American folk singer, songwriter, musician, and teacher featured on a Smithsonian Folkways release, on Vermont Public Television, and in Yankee Magazine.
      One of the Northwest's Largest free outdoor music festivals, it features multiple stages with continuous live performances by some of the best traditional performers in the nation. Click here for more info.

SOUTH HERO--Singer/songwriter Carol Ann Jones hosts the Paddle Tuesday Night Open Mic on Tuesday at 6:15 p.m. Ms. Jones' invites patrons and friends to join her on stage.
      The Blue Paddle has limited seating and a small bar so call ahead (802.372.4814) to assure a seat.

HIGHGATE SPRINGS--Wednesday is Geraldine "Jerry" Dexter Day in Highgate Springs as the community gathers to celebrate the life of longtime postmistress of that vital post office. She passed away in December. There will be a plaque commemoration as well as cake at 3 p.m.! And the Little White Church will fill with her memorabilia--and her fans.
      The Citizens Concert Band performs at the Little White Church lawn on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. They are dedicating this concert to Jerry; Claire Hungerford and the Band will perform songs in her honor. Under the direction of Kevin Loomis, the Band seats about 45 musicians in all ages from high school soloists to working professionals.
      The event will move indoors in case of rain. Click here for more info about Citizens Concert Band.


      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 © 2015 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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