ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 20 * * All Arts News On the Web * * April 14, 2016


      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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ST. ArtBits News PhotoALBANS--Good news! The Artist In Residence Gallery was one of the high points of the Franklin County art scene for a decade until it closed its doors December 31.
      The Artist In Residence Gallery is back, baby!
      The AIR will show off its new digs in a grand opening on Saturday at 3 - 6 p.m. The reception takes place in the fresh and exciting new home of their unique artwork with a chance to meet the artists and share a celebration of rebirth. There will be refreshments with beverages catered by 14th Star brewery.
      The artists' cooperative features paintings, fine art photography, fiber arts, stained glass, sculpture, lamps, pottery, folk art boxes, scarves, hats and more, all by artists who live in and around Franklin County. It is owned and operated by those artists. Peter Bartlett and Longina Smolinski are the featured artists this month.
      The gallery, located at 10 South Main Street between Rail City Market and Mimmos in St. Albans, is open Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Parking can be found within easy walking distance up and down Main street, behind the park, and in the parking garage.

FAIRFIELD--Bent Northrop Memorial Library hosts a Tea and Bristles Painting Party at the library on Thursday at 5:30 p.m.
      The evening out with friends will explore your creative side with no experience necessary. Artist Julie Griffis will teach you how to paint a 16"x20" concept piece, all while sipping tea and munching light refreshments.
      The cost is $25 and includes refreshments and all supplies necessary to create your own, personal masterpiece. Space is limited and registration is required. Call (802.827.3945) or Email.


SWANTON--The Swanton Arts Council extended the deadline for Spring into Creativity, the first Youth Art Show, to today. SAC wants K-12 and postgrad artists from FNWSU and Alburgh for the 2D and 3D show. Work will be exhibited at the Swanton Municipal complex. Entry is free but you have to submit by today.
      Date change: The Pinwheel Prep Work Group will meet at the Swanton Village Complex this evening and Tuesday evening from 6-8 p.m. to design and create pinwheels for the May Pinwheel Art Installation. Led by Anita Michele Parah, this work group is open to all adults of any skill level who want to make public art happen in Swanton.
      The SAC Artist Gathering takes place at the Swanton Free Public Library on Wednesday at 6 p.m. and every Wednesday in April and May. All mediums and crafts wgather and create each week.
      Email .


SHELBURNE--Franklin County's own physician-author Stephen Russell Payne and singer-songwriter-impresario Rick Norcross will hold forth with their "Stories & Songs" in the Shelburne Town Hall this evening at 7 p.m.
      Dr. Payne wrote Riding My Guitar -- The Rick Norcross Story. The book was released in conjunction with Mr. Norcross' 50th anniversary tour last year. Mr. Norcross invites "everyone to come and sing along to new Shelburne songs I have written for our upcoming CD recording sessions." They will have rock and roll photographs in the Pierson Library in the same building as the Town Hall.
      Admission is all free and open to the public, thanks to the Friends of the Pierson Library and the Town of Shelburne.

ST. ALBANS--Twiggs presents Sean Casey in the Window on Friday at 7 p.m. Twiggs' good friend and music maker, he first made a name for himself as a teenager singing Irish folk music in the style of the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem and the Chieftains.
      Call 802.524.1405 or click here for more info.

MORRISVILLE--River Arts presents WORD!CRAFT at the River Arts Center on Friday at 7 p.m. (sign up at 6:30)

     Word!Craft is not your ordinary open mic. It's a spoken word, hip hop, participatory experience for all ages featuring poetry and rhymes. The first half of the evening will be devoted to the spoken word and the second half to hip hop, including written pieces and freestyle cypher, in which each participant follows the next in an improv flow.
      Admission is by suggested donation of $5.
      click here for more info.

MIDDLEBURY--The Marquis Theater hosts Atlantic Crossing's CD Release Concert on Friday at 7 p.m.
      The Summer Sounds favorites will celebrate the release of their sixth album, Glory of the Day, and the first featuring Tristan Henderson. They will perform songs and tunes from Glory as well as old favorites. Atlantic Crossing is a mainstay of the Vermont folk music scene; they play the traditional music of New England, rooted deeply in the Celtic British Isles and in French and Maritime Canada, along with original material that interweaves seamlessly with the music of past generations.
      Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for students and seniors, and free for ages 12 and younger. Tickets are available at the door only.

ENOSBURG--The Opera House at Enosburg Falls presents Bella Voce Women's Chorus of Vermont in a special performance on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
      Bella Voce performs throughout Vermont, collaborating with local and visiting artists, as well as touring in as well as Austria and Italy (2011), and Ireland (2008). Their five CDs include Christmas Joy, Glorious Seasons, Now Let Us Sing Songs of Hope and Freedom, and their tenth anniversary album, Tapestry of Song. The non-profit has 40 auditioned singers, ages 18 to over 70.
      Admission is $15 for adults and $12 for students and seniors. Tickets are available online for a dollar less ($14 or $11) or purchase at the door. Click here for tickets and more info.

MONTGOMERY--Humanities for Everyone presents A Terrible Beauty in the Montgomery Town Library on Sunday at 2 p.m.
      Irish poet William Butler Yeats called the 1916 Easter Rebellion in Dublin "a terrible beauty." At this 100th anniversary of that watershed event, historian Vince Feeney will discuss the circumstances surrounding the rebellion, what happened that fateful week in April, and how Yeats found the "beauty" in an armed revolt that left most of its leaders dead or imprisoned.
      A VPR commentator, Mr. Feeney was Adjunct Professor of History at the UVM for nearly 30 years and has been a lecturer for the Vermont Humanities Council since 2003. His books include Finnigans, Slaters, and Stonepeggers: A History of the Irish in Vermont.
      Call Liz Leroux (802.326.3113) for more info.

Tuesday and Wednesday
EAST FAIRFIELD--Summer Evenings with Vermont Treasures begins the 2016 season with the return of Michael Hurley to the Meeting House on the Green this year on Tuesday and Wednesday at 7 p.m. The April 20 show is now sold out but tickets remain for the April 19 evening of outsider folk, snockography, and plunking away as a solo artist with tunes new and old. Special guests Jocko and Boone may make an appearance both nights.
      The legendary troubadour is touring the northeast this month with stops in Brooklyn, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont and Canada. "These were my old stomping grounds before I defected to the vast northwestern region."
      The concert series offers some of Vermont's best musicians in a unique and intimate venue. "It sounds cliche, but it's true. We do offer something for every taste, from honky-tonk to jazz and everything in between," said organizer Tyrone Shaw. "People love this venue, musicians and concert-goers alike. It really is magical." Proceeds help fund the ongoing restoration of the Meeting House.
      Admission is $18 in advance or $20 at the door and kids under 12 are free. His show sold out last year so advance ticketing is strongly advised. Call Michele Bessett (802.827.3275) to reserve tickets and pay at the door. Refreshments will be for sale at intermission.
      click here for more info about the 2016 summer music series.


      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 © 2016 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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