ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 20 * * All Arts News On the Web * * July 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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      "Summer is truly taking off, leaving [artist Gail Salzman] a bit breathless with possibilities for procrastination!" she said. There is a lot going on this week, so we'll have you on the run full time!


FRANKLIN COUNTY--The Big Music Weeks of Summer continue as some of our friends play multiple gigs. Summer Sounds continues 26 years of concerts in Highgate with a favorite folk duo and we find shows in Burlington, Enosburg Falls, Fairfax, Grand Isle, Jeffersonville, Middlebury, St. Albans, South Burlington, Stowe and more.


HIGHGATE--O. C. McCuin & Sons, the All Arts Council, and the Town of Highgate continue the 26th year of Summer Sounds concerts at home in Highgate with Anderson-Gram on Sunday at 7 p.m.
      Anderson-Gram play an easy-going blend of folk, country, and bluegrass, often originals that paint pictures of everyday life. Gayle Anderson has a fine contralto folk voice, often called "a little bit sweet" and usually takes the lead. Bob Gram brings the strong baritone harmonies as well as lead vocals. They have played together since they met at an open mic 25 years ago.
      The husband and wife duo disappeared to California shortly after playing Summer Sounds almost 20 years ago (yes, that was a coincidence) but they are back in Massachusetts. They have played Bethlehem Musikfest, Cambridge Center For the Arts, San Francisco Folk Festival, Seafest of Nova Scotia, Sonoma Songwriters Showcase, and many more.
      Anderson-Gram can be heard on folk and acoustic radio stations and radio shows across North America, in Belgium, and in Siberia. They have released four albums, Across the Great Divide, Ring of Fire, Small Town Saturday Night, and Cover to Cover.
      Come early! The Foster Grandparents Ice Cream social will hit the spot on our summer night of music.
      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 the schedule.


FAIRFAX--As one show ends, the next starts. Fairfax Community Theater Company will hold auditions for A Shot in the Dark at BFA-Fairfax today and tomorrow from 7-9 pm. All rehearsals and performances will be at the Westford Brick Meeting House.
      The call is for eight actors, five men and three women. Click here for more info.


ST. ALBANS--The Eloquent Page has invited local writer (and escaped Messenger columnist) Leon Thompson to sign copies of his fourth book, Fore!, at the store on Saturday from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.
     Fore! The Grand History, Glory Days and Golden Future of Champlain Country Club is the 100-year story of the club told by its people with more than 25 interviews, photos, a course map, and tournament histories. It is Mr. Thompson's fourth book.
      Saturday also features the Kingman Street Classic Car Show and downtown sidewalk sale.


SHELDON--Village Harmony is returning to Summer at Grace Church on July 24; Beth Crane is looking for people willing to house some of the kids.
      The current tour and July 24 concert features two teens from Macedonia who participated in the Village Harmony camp there last summer. The performance will feature Balkan folk dancing and singing inspired by the two girls, and Village Harmony alumna Zoe Christiansen will lead a Balkan band with member instrumentalists. click here for more info about the concert.
      Would you like to host performers for one night? Call Ms. Crane (802.326.4603) for more info.


SHELBURNE--The Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery celebrates its 25th anniversary with the show Being Present that showcases several new paintings by Fairfield artist Gail Salzman plus 25 other artists, The opening reception is this evening at 6-8 p.m.
      Being Present refers to "what the creative process is about, what we as individuals strive for in artistic endeavors as well as in the fine art of living," said owner Joan Furchgott.

ST ALBANS--The Northwestern Medical Center Gallery hosts photographer Leif Tillotson in a solo show this month. Mr. Tillotson is exhibiting the scenery of Vermont.
      Mr. Tillotson was born in Bakersfield and grew up working on dairy farms. After college, he spent 12 years in teaching before falling in love with photography. He has taken photos of people, landscapes, and motorsports since 1995. He now works in Restaurant and Catering Services at NMC.
      The show continues through the end of July.


STOWE--Harrison's Restaurant hosts Will Patton and Mark Struhsacker playing bluegrass this evening at 6 p.m.

BURLINGTON--Young Tradition-Vermont presents a Bastille Day Concert with the Yves Lambert Trio and with Vermont legends Michele Choiniere, Dono Schabner, David Gusakov and Clyde Stats at Main Street Landing, this evening at 7 p.m.
      The French National Day commemorates the Storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789, as well as the Fête de la Fédération which celebrated the unity of the French people on July 14, 1790. M. Lambert has performed throughout the world and influenced an entire generation of tradition Quebec musicians as founder and long time member of the group La Bottine Souriante.
      Admission is by $20 suggested donation at the door. There are no advance tickets but reservations can be requested from Email

SOUTH BURLINGTON--The Northern Exposure Summer Series has returned to Higher Ground after a three-year hiatus. The series presents up-and-coming Vermont bands in the Showcase Lounge. Coon Hill John, Will Pellerin, Troy Millette & Dylan Gombas, and Steve Hartmann take the stage this evening at 8:30 p.m.
      Admission is $6. click here for more info.

ENOSBURG--The Opera House Rock Camp took over the House this week. The week-long camp has covered music basics, improve, playing as a band, and jamming, and it will culminate in a performance Friday evening.
      Call 802-933-6171 or click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--The One Fed Summer Concert Series continues with No Left Turn tonight and Rumblecat tomorrow evening at One Federal Restaurant. Both concerts begin at 7 p.m.

ST. ALBANS--Twiggs has three nights of entertainment with double headers tonight and Saturday. Get your laugh on and maybe get behind the mic yourself at Open Comedy Night or have dinner to the tunes of Bob Young. The Duel takes the stage tomorrow then split your attention between Left Hand and Black on Saturday. Shows begin at 7 p.m.
      Call 802.524.1405 or click here for more info.

MIDDLEBURY--The Middlebury Summer Festival on the Green winds up today through Saturday with Summer Sounds and Franklin County favorites including Rik Palieri and culminating with a Vermont Jazz Ensemble street dance.
      Festival events are held rain or shine. Free admission but donations are welcome. click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--The 14th Star Brewery celebrates the 5th annual O-Show with Jay Taylor and the O-Can Release Show at the tap room on Friday at 6 p.m.
      The "O" Show Tribute beer cans were inspired by the late Brooke Ostrander. Mr. O "was a second father to me as well as an educator," wrote 14th Star Owner Steve Gagner. "I spent countless hours and weekends at his house, not to mention his classroom... His tragic passing in 2011 was the spark that caused me to stop planning the brewery and to get it in motion. Mr. O didn't talk, he did. I think we can all use a little more Mr. O in our lives. I miss him, every day."
      Admission is free and the show is open to the public. All ages are welcome.

JEFFERSONVILLE--The 6th annual Cambridge Music Festival takes over the future Cambridge Community Center site on Saturday starting at 2 p.m. The CMF showcases New England-based musicians, singers, and songwriters.
      All proceeds benefit Cambridge 360, a local organization that raises funds for projects like building a community center.
      Admission is $15 for adults, $10 for youth and senior, and $5 for JSC students. Children 10 and under are free. Tickets are on sale now.
      The CAC online fundraising auction continues through Sun, Aug 14. Click here to see the items. Keep the bids coming!

JEFFERSONVILLE--Martell's at the Red Fox presents the Nobby Reed Project Saturday at 9 p.m.
      The pub and sports bar has pub favorites, local draft beers, and an open stage for local bands and other live entertainment on weekends.

Sunday and Wednesday
GRAND ISLE--Island Arts has a music double header this week, too.
      First. the Vermont Jazz Ensemble at the Grand Isle Lake House on Sunday at 6:30 p.m. The 17 member instrumental group performs Jazz or Big Band music as well as Latin, rock, fusion, and popular music.
      Admission is $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Ages 12 and under free. The grounds open at 5:30 pm for picnicking and food from My Kids' Kitchen will be available for purchase, also starting at 5:30. click here for more info.
      Next up, the Citizens Concert Band takes over the Grand Isle Lake House on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m.
      Admission is $10 in advance, $15 at the door. Ages 12 and under free. Profits support the Island Arts Youth Scholarship Fund. The grounds open at 5:30 pm for picnicking. Click here for more info.


St. Albans--The Saint Albans Museum presents The Hills of Home: Mountains & Identity in Vermont History in the Bliss Room this evening at 7 p.m.       Cultural historian Jill Mudgett will discuss our pride in Vermont's landscape how our shared identity became rooted in the land. The story begins with the state's founders and moves through Vermont history to explain how environmental understandings changed over time.
      Dr. Mudgett is engaged in collaborative scholarship with other Vermont researchers and is a commentator on Vermont Public Radio.
      This program is part of the Museum's 50th Anniversary series. Call Alex Lehning (802.527.7933), email, or click here for more info.


      ArtBits features a quick weekly peek at library events in and around Franklin County. That popular feature has a page of its own at the Franklin County Bookshelf here on the AAC site at We also take an occasional peek at the bookshelf or night stand of the folks you know in and around Franklin County. Those reviews can be found on the ArtBits Bookshelf.


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