Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Symphony Sampler, August 28, Newport

Symphony Sampler is a lakeside event in Newport offering music, dinner, and raffles, to benfit the VSO's activities in the North Country. The Dancing Sail will provide a gourmet buffet (cash bar), and there will be a multi-prize raffle. There are two grand prizes: an overnight at the Doubletree Hotel in Burlington plus tickets for the VSO’s October 24 Masterworks concert in Burlington; and a handmade “Symphony Sampler” quilt created by Carolyn Ferrara. In addition, an Adirondack chair with original artwork by Earl Whitmore will be auctioned off during the course of the evening.

Musical entertainment will be provided by “Harp & Soul” (VSO musicians Heidi Soons, harp, and Anne Janson, flute) as well as two local high school musicians: cellist Sylvia Woodmansee of Westfield and flutist Emily Wiggett of Barton. “Harp & Soul” will perform excerpts from their popular school program, and the young musicians will join them for selections by Vivaldi, Bach, and others.

Emily Wiggett, age 17, was born and raised on a dairy farm in Barton, Vermont. She enjoys exhibiting her registered Jersey cattle at local shows. She will be a senior at Lake Region Union High School, where she is a member of the National Honor Society. She has studied flute and piccolo with Berta Frank of Jericho for the past four years. Emily is a member of the Vermont Youth Orchestra and will perform as a soloist with the Vermont Youth Philharmonia during the coming season.

Sylvia Woodmansee, age 16, lives in Westfield and attends North Country Union High School. She has been playing the cello for five years, and studies with Mary Lou Rylands in East Craftsbury. She also studies piano (equally seriously) with Paula Ennis in Stowe. Sylvia has participated in the All State Orchestra as well as various chamber music camps. Aside from music, she enjoys hiking, kayaking, reading, and gardening.

Carolyn Ferrara is a member of the VSO’s regional board of trustees (the North Country Friends of the VSO). She says “I was motivated to design and make this quilt after listening to a marvelous performance by the VSO. Without the composers who wove notes into glorious scores, there would be no VSO. Their genius created music that has endured through the ages. The Vermont Symphony Orchestra and its exceptionally talented musicians have continued to convey the rich heritage of these composers to the public’s appreciation and delight.” The quilt, which measures 55" x 66."

Earl Whitmore, Sr., is Case Manager at Eagle Eye Farms of West Burke, and also serves as the Jay Peak Ski Area Children’s Program Director. Michael Racine, Eagle Eye Farm Vocational Program Director, will assist with construction of the chair. The tradition of auctioning off a painted Adirondack chair began at last year’s Symphony Sampler event, where the “chair art” was created by Katy Kavanagh.

The cost for the event is $30 for adults; $25 for ages 13-17; $20 for under age 13. Attendance is limited. All proceeds go towards VSO concerts and educational programs in the North Country. Last season the VSO’s SymphonyKids programs reached over 2500 school children in 17 presentations serving 27 schools in 23 different communities in Orleans and Caledonia Counties.

Good music, good company, good food, and a good cause! To make a reservation or to get more information about “Symphony Sampler,” call 802-334-8110 or 1-800-876-9293 ext. 10.
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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The VSO Store is open for business!

Check out our newest selection of VSO merchandise, designed by me, Rebecca Kopycinski. Click here to visit the store. Keep reading!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Vermont Music Now Episode 8: Jorge Martin

Vermont Music Now is hosted by our New Music Advisor David Ludwig. When the series was filmed, David also served as Music Alive Composer-in-Residence. His guest in this installment is Jorge Martin, Vermont composer featured in our March 2009 Masterworks and Sunday Matinee concerts.

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Tech Talk: Now That It's Over

Hello, again, friends! This is your Technical Director, Rebecca, reporting on the now-complete Summer Festival Tour. I have to admit, I was shooting to post more than I did during the tour. What stopped me? Well, for one, getting wifi in the middle of a field in Vermont is not something one can count on (maybe I'll get an iPhone for next year?!). Secondly, I wasn't expecting to be so darn tired during this tour. Am I getting too old? I am almost 26, after all. More likely, it was the rainy days that sapped my energy. Despite my slacking during the tour, I wanted to write one last time before hanging up my walkie-talkie until next year (oh, how I miss those walkie-talkies!).

The goal in writing these blog posts was to shed some light on the immense manpower behind this tour, and the around-the-clock caravan of crews, musicians, and audiences that make it all happen. There are many, many people involved in this production. Let's start from the beginning:

6 a.m. Tent crew erects tent (and I'm still sleeping off the day before!)
9 a.m. Stage crew builds stage (John Miller ROCKED!)
12 p.m. VSO crew (pictured below, from left, Micah, Sean, me, and Emily) and sound and lights crew arrive

3 p.m. VSO Volunteer Coordinator (Ralph Thomas below, with light sabers and Christopher Jordan) and VSO box office staff (pictured below, Samantha Talbot and Mike Peluse) arrive

4 p.m. Volunteers arrive (pictured below are Karl Brosch, volunteer co-coordintor, with volunteer Pat Pranger), Don and Ellie arrive, our SUPER VOLUNTEERS staffing the merchandise table

5 p.m. Gates open, caterers arrive (on the good days, at least)
7:30 p.m. Concert! (Panoramic shot by Bill Jalbert)

c. 9:30 p.m. Fireworks! (Photo by Bill Jalbert)

Nine concerts over eleven days. Can't wait for next year. See all the photos from tour on our Facebook page.
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