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2017/2018      OUR 52nd CONCERT SEASON  
Scroll down through the listings below to see future events, notes on our occasional Community Outreach Programs for Seniors and Guilford Central School, and then a section with summaries of past events as they happen during the season.


APRIL 21     
9th Annual Women in Music Celebration: 蠟O, Britannia!蠡   
A Private Home in West Brattleboro 

SATURDAY, 6:00 p.m.: Our annual fundraising house-concert gala has featured a variety of programs showcasing work by women composers from across the centuries, recently including a couple of iconic singer-songwriters, Edith Piaf in 2015 and Billie Holiday in 2017. Between these two programs we enjoyed chamber music by Parisian sisters Lili and Nadia Boulanger. Our 2018 concert, beginning at about 7:00 p.m., will present chamber works by three noted British women: actress and theater composer Madeleine Dring (1923-1977), famed suffragette and author Dame Ethel Smyth (1858-1944), and folksong collector-singer, pianist, and poet Lucy Broadwood (1858-1929). We蘗ll enjoy a festive and filling pre-concert buffet of hearty hors d蘗oeuvres, salads, fruit and cheese, as well as wine and other beverages. The post-concert reception will feature an array of delectable desserts donated by area restaurants and specialty bakers. A Silent Auction of 2-for-1 tickets to regional concerts, plays and cinema, plus a few special items and gift certificates, is a popular addition to the evening; attendees avail themselves of some real entertainment bargains while supporting our current season of events. This annual benefit carries a suggested donation of $25 to $35 per person. For a complete invitation packet, contact the FOMAG office by phone at (802) 254-3600 or email


MAY 27     
10th Spring Organ Concert & Holiday Cookout
The Organ Barn, 158 Kopkind Rd., off Packer Corners Rd., Guilford 

SUNDAY, 3:00 p.m.: University of Vermont college organist and music professor David Neiweem, who performed for our 2014 Messiah Sing, returns to this corner of the state to present solo and ensemble works on the c. 1897 Tracker Organ in the Barn. His program will include vocal and instrumental members of the Guilford Chamber Players. Watch this space for repertoire details as they emerge! A festive holiday cookout follows on the deck and back lawn, with optional gathering space in the Barn in case of inclement weather. Grilling options are offered for vegetarians and carnivores alike, along with sides, salads, and sundae fixings. Admission is $15 for the concert, with a $10 fee for the optional meal.

DIRECTIONS TO THE ORGAN BARN: From the North and East, take Interstate 91 to Exit 1 in Brattleboro. Take Rt. 5 South 1.3 miles to the Guilford Country Store on your left. This is 蠟Algiers蠡 village in Guilford. Take a RIGHT across from the store onto Guilford Center Rd. Go for just over 2 miles to your first LEFT, which is Weatherhead Hollow Rd. Follow this road for about 4.9 miles to Packer Corners Rd. on the RIGHT, just after the Franklin Farm. Follow this well-groomed dirt road for 2 miles till you see a G-clef sign saying 蠟Concert蠡 that is pointing left into Kopkind Rd. . . . . From the South, you can save several miles of travel by taking Exit 28B for 蠟Bernardston.蠡 At the end of the ramp, turn RIGHT and head about a 1/2 mile to the T-junction with Rt. 5. Turn RIGHT on Rt. 5 and proceed for just under 4 miles to Keets Brook Rd. on your LEFT. Take this road, which turns to dirt and leads you to the crossroads with Weatherhead Hollow Rd. in Guilford, Vt. Turn LEFT at the crossroads. The Franklin Farm is on your right as you turn. Take a RIGHT onto Packer Corners Rd. just after the farm. Proceed 2 miles to the sign for the Concert at Kopkind Rd.


A Cappella  la Carte   
Christ Church, cor. Rt. 5 and Melendy Hill Rd., Guilford 
Guilford Community Church, 38 Church Dr., Guilford

FRIDAY, 6:00-6:45: The Annual Meeting for Friends of Music members begins at 6:00 in the sanctuary of Christ Church. We蘗ll cover what we蘗ve done this season, what蘗s planned for next year, and election of the 2018-19 Board of Trustees; open to all interested folks, it蘗s possible to sign up for membership on the spot to vote for trustees and a few other agenda items.

FRIDAY, 7:30: Note: Parking at Guilford Community Church will be accessible only after 7:00 p.m., so please delay your arrival accordingly. The A Cappella Concert at GCC features the Guilford Chamber Singers, led by Tom Baehr, and the Cantabile Vocal Ensemble, an early music quintet of professionals from the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts. Program repertoire details with be added as it becomes available. A dessert reception caps the evening. Admission is free, with donations welcome.   


IN ADDITION TO OUR REGULAR SEASON OF CONCERTS & BENEFITS, posted above, we established two Community Outreach Programs in 2008-09 . . . . . 

CONCERT SERIES FOR SENIORS: These enthusiastically received performances at Windham County retirement homes, public housing villages, senior activity centers, and rehabilitation/nursing home facilities feature a wide variety of local musicians offering classical music, jazz standards, popular music from several past decades, as well as original material and World Music with an audience that clamors for more! These programs require member donations, grant funding and other targeted sponsorship support since we offer them free of charge but are committed to paying honorariums to our performers.

MUSIC ENRICHMENT PROGRAM at GUILFORD CENTRAL SCHOOL: From 2007-08 through 2014-15, we received annual grants from the Max Y. Seaton Trust for partial support of this program, which offered rhythm and voice workshops for students in upper grades in a 3-day residency led by drummer-percussionist Todd Roach and colleagues. We have also arranged for performances by groups from the high school for an additional bit of inspiration and encouragement for Guilford students to continue their involvement with music. Watch this space for other Enrichment Program news.

PAST EVENTS in 2017-18, fondly remembered, will be moved here as they occur. 


52nd Labor Day Weekend Festival  蠔The Organ Barn, off Packer Corners Rd., Guilford 

SEPT. 2, SATURDAY, 7:30 p.m., Concert in the Barn: Performing on our c. 1897 Tracker Organ, Edwin Lawrence and soloist Thomas Gregg, tenor, performed 蠟A New England Organ Sampler,蠡 works by 19th-20th century American composers Dudley Buck, George Whitefield Chadwick, John Knowles Paine, Horatio Parker, and Lawrence.   

SEPT. 3, SUNDAY, 2:00 p.m., Orchestra Concert on the Lawn: Because of winds and rain from Tropical Storm Harvey, this event was moved to the Broad Brook Grange. The Grange opened at 12:00 noon for picnicking and lunch sales. At 2:00, conductor Ken Olsson led the Festival Orchestra in Mozart蘗s Symphony #40, Elgar蘗s Serenade for Strings, Nov軏ek蘗s Octet for Winds, and a Mozart aria featuring soprano Julie Olsson. Our traditional finale sing-in of Randall Thompson蘗s Alleluia brought the concert to a close.
Raylynmor Opera: 蠟Viva la Voce!蠡   
Guilford Community Church, 38 Church Dr., Guilford 

OCT. 1, SUNDAY, 3:00 p.m.: In collaboration with New Hampshire蘗s Raylynmor Opera, Molly McCoy and Julie Olsson, sopranos, and Tom Cochran, bass-baritone, delighted us with favorite arias from La damnation de Faust by Berlioz, Hansel and Gretel by Humperdinck, The Old Maid and the Thief by Menotti, Don Giovanni and The Magic Flute by Mozart, Gianni Schicchi and La Boh峻e by Puccini, Tannh吟ser by Wagner, and A厤a and La Forza del Destino by Verdi. Piano accompaniment was provided by Kenneth Olsson. Information on Raylynmor蘗s 2017-2018 season (including works by Hoiby, Humperdinck, Puccini, and Gilbert & Sullivan) is online at   

47th Community Messiah Sing: A Benefit for the Homeless   
Centre Congregational Church, 193 Main St., Brattleboro 

DEC. 2, SATURDAY, 1:00 p.m.: Conductor Kenneth Olsson led 250 or more regional singers and our four soloists癩Junko Watanabe, soprano; Justina Golden, alto; James Anderson, tenor; and Cailin Marcel Manson, baritone癩in Handel蘗s masterwork. We performed the full the Christmas portion and a few favorite passages in Parts II and III, including the Hallelujah Chorus! William McKim served as organist for a 30th season, and trumpeter Melissa Griffin performed with us for the first time. As usual, a goodly number of area folks come just to listen to such a grand choir. Door donations totaled $2,280, helping us surpass the $20,000 milestone in donations passed along to Groundworks for its shelter and food programs for the area蘗s homeless and needy population since 2007. Several bags of warm winter outerwear, non-perishable food, and new toys were also gathered at the door by a Groundworks volunteer. Sponsors covering most of our costs for the event this season癩with service trades or cash donations癩include Brattleboro Reformer, C&S Wholesale Grocers, The Marina Restaurant, Richmond Auto Repair, and Centre Congregational Church. Additional support comes from FOMAG蘗s newly established Miriam Adams Howland Memorial Fund.

45th Christmas at Christ Church   
Christ Church, cor. Rt. 5 South and Melendy Hill Rd., Guilford 

DEC. 15, FRIDAY, 7:30 p.m., and DEC. 16, SATURDAY, 4:00 p.m.: The Guilford Chamber Singers, under director Tom Baehr, presented 蠟Such Wondrous Tidings蠡: Medieval to Modern English Carols Set to Ancient Texts (10 selections from 14th and 15th century source materials) with instrumental interludes by the Guilford Chamber Players. . . . Don McLean then read an audience favorite, his entertaining version of 蠟A Child蘗s Christmas in Wales蠡 by Dylan Thomas. We all joined in on a few traditional carols before heading away into the night. Door donations of just over $930 were divided between FOMAG and the Christ Church Preservation Fund (it was built in 1817 as the first Episcopal church in Vermont but has not had an active congregation since the early 1900s).

Midwinter Musicale: 蠟The Last Dance蠡  
Guilford Community Church, 38 Church Dr., Guilford 

FEB. 17, SATURDAY, 3:00 p.m.: This program was inspired by Jessica Gelter蘗s interest in performing composer David Lang蘗s song cycle 蠟Death Speaks蠡 (2012), a companion piece for his Pulitzer Prize-winning 蠟Little Match Girl Passion蠡 (2007). Jess performed Lang蘗s 26-minute work with baritone Tony Grobe, violinist Michelle Liechti, guitarist David William Ross, and pianist Keane Southard.
       The R.I.P. SIngers performed a few of Tom Baehr蘗s settings of humorous epitaphs from his 蠟Rest in Peace蠡 project (2014) and his 2017 setting of Dylan Thomas蘗s 蠟Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night蠡 (2017), dedicated to the memory of Guilford Chamber Singer, pianist, and actress Jeanne Austin. . . .
       Readers Adrienne Major and Tom Green shared a range of inspirational poetry, including works by Kahlil Gibran, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Henry Scott-Holland, and Valerie DuBois, a Chicago poet. Major also read selected "Haiku for the Grieving" by Beverly Miller, with interpretive dance and hand-signing by the author癩Beverly serves as local chapter organizer for The Compassionate Friends, a national organization founded forty years ago to provide support to families after the death of a child. A slide show of the photographs Beverly had paired with each haiku, as well as other images throughout the performances and readings, was projected on the wall for an added visual element of this multimedia event.
       Poet and author Verandah Porche read her poignant essay on late husband Richard Coutant's close bond with the property they shared at Packer Corners. Veterinarian Laurie Schneski read a chapter from retired colleague Robin Truelove Stronk's irreverent memoir "Vet Noir: It蘗s not the Pets, It蘗s the People Who Make Me Crazy." Serving as a sort of forward-looking coda for the program, Valerie Abrahamsen shared an uplifting excerpt from her 2015 book "Paranormal: A New Testament Scholar Looks at the Afterlife," based on research into near-death experiences. . . . 
       A teatime reception of Warming Soups, Sides, Salads, and Desserts, and lots of good conversation, was enjoyed by a large crowd of performers and attendees.