Together In Song
Public television station WGBY presents its 5th season of the choral music series “Together In Song” beginning March 7. Many area choirs and choruses submitted audition tapes that were reviewed by a panel of judges. Those selected taped their segments last month, and now compete for a chance to be selected to perform in a live performance in late April.
WGBY General Manager Russ Peotter conceived “Together in Song”, and Springfield Symphony Orchestra Maestro Kevin Rhodes hosts the series for the fifth year.
“I’m honored to be hosting ‘Together in Song'”, says Rhodes, “And it’s a highlight of my season to support all of the fine work of the singers and choral directors in this way. I particularly admire how the groups which appear clearly have gotten more comfortable with the format since we began. Their performances have grown which says the whole program is having an incredibly positive effect on the level of singing going on. In the case of the children’s groups this represents an immeasurable gain in what those children are gaining from the unique educational experience that singing in a chorus represents”.
Some of this year’s 24participating choirs include: Gateway Grade 7-8 Choir; Young Singers of Greater Westfield; Holyoke High School; Springfield Central High School Madrigal Singers; Choir of the Springfield High School of Science and Technology; and The Chill Harmonics.
The Select Choir at Kurn Hattin Homes in Westminster, VT, is participating in “Together in Song” for the third year. Thirty five talented 6th-8th grade musicians, under the direction of Grammy nominee Lisa Bianconi, have a passion for music. According to Connie Sanderson, Executive Director at Kurn Hattin Homes, “Participating in “Together in Song” has been a highlight of Kurn Hattin’s music program the past three years. We are thrilled to be a part of this exciting competition, which has introduced many viewers in Western New England to the programs and services of Kurn Hattin Homes”.
For the schedule, participants, airtimes, and more: http://togetherinsong.wgby.org/
Summer’s Coming II
***Shakespeare and Company’s new season includes three plays by the Bard (“Henry V” (starring Ryan Winkles), “The Comedy of Errors” and “Hamlet”) and two premieres, according to new Executive Director Rick Dildine. Tina Packer will star in the world premiere of Jane Anderson’s “Mother of The Maid”, a tale about Joan of Arc’s mother. In addition, the summer season includes “The Unexpected Man” by Yasmina Reza, and opens with the provocative new play by Sarah Treem, “The How and the Why”. The season runs from Memorial Day through the Fall on their Lenox campus. For details: 413-637-3353 or www.shakespeare.org.
***Silverthorne Theatre Company, founded by two former Northfield Mount Hermon theatre people, has moved its operation to Sloan Theater at Greenfield Community College. Their summer season includes a production of Thornton Wilder’s expansive “The Skin of Our Teeth”, a new play chosen during a playwrighting competition this year, and Yussef El Guindi’s award-winning comedy “Pilgrims Musa and Sheri in the New World”. They’ll also present Steve Henderson’s “Jerry and Ed” as a fundraiser on March 27-29. For details: http://www.silverthornetheater.org/.
New England Public Radio has announced its honorees for the 2015 Arts and Haminities Award. The Community Music School of Springfield (outstanding organization), musician and instructor Andrew Lawrence (Outstanding Individual) and poet Karen Skolfield (Emerging Talent) will be feted at a gala on May 12 at The Log Cabin. NPR Morning Edition host David Greene will emcee the event. For details: http://nepr.net/events/2014/08/01/2015-arts-and-humanities/.
Keep in Mind…
***Erik Larson, best-selling author, talks about his new book “Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania” at Mount Holyoke’s Chapin Auditorium on March 11. The event is sponsored by The Odyssey Book Shop, For tickets: 413-534-7307 or www.odysseybks.com.
***The Hartford Jewish Film Festival (March 12-22) hosts screenings of “The Outrageous Sophie Tucker”, a bio of the Hartford native who became “the last of the red hot mamas” on March 12, and “Above and Beyond: Bruce Sundlun’s Incredible WWII Journey”, narrated by his daughter WFSB anchor Kara Sundlun on March 15. For details: http://hjff.org/
***The Chieftains, six-time Grammy winners, return to the UMass Fine Arts Center in Amherst on March 8. They’ll be performing their brand of traditional Irish music with founder Paddy Moloney and many special guests (including traditional Irish step dancers). For tickets: 413-545-2511 or 800-999-UMAS, or www.fineartscenter.com.
***Yesterday and Today: The Interactive Beatles Experience, brings the music of the fab four to Springfield’s CityStage March 6-7. For tickets: 413-788-7044 or www.citystage.symphonyhall.com.
***Reformed Whores, Marie Cecile Anderson and Katy Frame, bring their hilariously bawdy country music to the Mark Twain House and Museum on March 7. They’ve been featured on MTV’s Guy Code blog, Nerve.com, BUST Magazine, CBS’s The Doctors, and the Yahoo! web show Mansome. For over a year they’ve been on tour opening for the legendary bass player and Primus front-man Les Claypool and his Duo de Twang. For mature audiences only. For tickets: 860-280-3130 or www.marktwainhouse.org.
Mark G. Auerbach studied theatre at American University and the Yale School of Drama. He’s worked for arts organizations and reported on theatre for newspapers and radio.