Acclaimed American ensemble the Brentano String Quartet will perform Friday at 8 p.m. in Robison Hall at Middlebury College’s Mahaney Center for the Arts as the opening event of the seventh annual Middlebury Bach Festival. The concert will feature J. S. Bach’s “Art of Fugue,” interspersed with dramatic recordings of related texts by writers ranging from Lewis Carroll to Carl Sagan. Professor of Music Larry Hamberlin will give a free pre-concert talk for interested audience members at 7 p.m. in Room 221.
Since its inception in 1992, the Brentano String Quartet has appeared internationally to popular and critical acclaim. The quartet has performed in the world’s most prestigious venues, including Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall in New York; the Library of Congress in Washington; the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam; and many others. The Quartet had its first European tour in 1997, and was honored in the U.K. with the Royal Philharmonic Award for Most Outstanding Debut. The London Independent raved, “…passionate, uninhibited and spellbinding.”
Additional Bach Festival performances will take place on Saturday and Sunday. Full information about the Festival is at go.middlebury.edu/bachfest.
Assigned seating tickets are $25 for the general public. For more information, or to purchase tickets, call 443-MIDD (6433) or go to middlebury.edu/arts. The Mahaney Center is located on the campus of Middlebury College, at 72 Porter Field Road in Middlebury, just off Route 30 south/S. Main Street. Free parking is available curbside on Route 30 or in the Center for the Arts parking lot.
DANIKA & THE JEB LIVE AT BRANDON MUSIC
She’s a songwriter who was almost a doctor. He’s a guitar aficionado who owns and operates his own guitar instruction company. Together they form the duo Danika Holmes and Jeb Hart, a soulful combination of acoustic Pop and Blues that hits the heart with their blended talents. Hear them perform at Brandon Music on Saturday, at 7:30 p.m.
Holmes initially started as a solo artist, her songs playing on Sirius XM’s Coffee House station and on 150 radio stations nationwide. She believes a well written song can embody all emotions of human existence and articulates that beautifully with her slightly raspy yet gentle voice and truthful lyrics.
The multi-faceted Hart began playing music at the age of nine; shortly thereafter he began a 16-year career of guitar instruction, opening his own company Six Month Guitar. Performing with various bands, ranging in genres from Blues to Rock, Country to Big Band, Hart found the partner he was looking for in Holmes.
Holmes and Hart are taking stages by storm, opening for mainstream heavyweights such as Lyle Lovett, Dierks Bentley, Phil Vassar and others. Their soulful and intoxicating sound lures in new fans daily.
Concert tickets are $20. A pre-concert dinner is available for $25. Reservations are required for dinner and recommended for the show.Venue is BYOB. Call 247-4295 or e-mail [email protected] for reservations or for more information. Brandon Music is located at 62 Country Club Road in Brandon.
“WORKING” IN MIDDLEBURY
The Middlebury Community Players presents the musical “Working,” at Middlebury’s Town Hall Theater. A celebration of the men and women who keep America humming, the show runs for two weekends, Thursday through Sunday, opening This Thursday, April 27, and closing May 7. Show times are 8 p.m. for the Thursday through Saturday performances, and 2 p.m. on Sundays.
Based on Studs Terkel’s landmark book of compiled interviews with hundreds of American workers, “Working” uses their stories to weave a tapestry of hopes, fears, ideals, realities, satisfactions and disappointments. Song styles range from show tunes to ballads to down-and-dirty Blues.
These are people you know, but maybe have never heard before, using dialog, song and dance to create a powerful and moving portrait of the country and time we live in.
Tickets are $15 for the Thursday shows, $23 for all other performances ($18 for students with ID), and can be purchased at the THT box office, 382-9222, or online at townhalltheater.org. MCP musicals tend to sell out; advance ticket purchase suggested. ASL interpretation will be provided at the April 30th show. More information about the production, as well as pictures and videoclips can be found at middleburycommunityplayers.org.
JEFF WARNER AT WALKOVER
The Cabin Fever Series presents Jeff Warner in concert Saturday, at 8 p.m. at The Walkover Gallery and Concert Room, 15 Main Street in Bristol.
Warner is among the nation’s foremost performer/interpreters of traditional music. His songs from the lumber camps, fishing villages and mountain tops of America connect 21st century audiences with the everyday lives and artistry of 19th century Americans. “Providing more than just rich entertainment, Jeff will leave you with a deeper appreciation of the land you live in” (Caffé Lena, Saratoga, NY). His songs, rich in local history and a sense of place, bring us the latest news from the distant past.
“Jeff is my nominee for the best folk singer in America. He has a mischievous sense of humor, he plays most any instrument you can name, and his repertoire is encyclopedic, ranging from black Gospel to shanties to music hall. In a time when most folk singers rarely sing a folk song, Warner sings, almost entirely, old songs,” says Bob Bossin, Canada’s String Band founder, British Columbia.
Admission is $15 in advance and $20 day of show. For reservations call 453-3188 x 2.
MULTIDISCIPLINARY PERFORMANCE AT COLLEGE POOL
The Dance Program at Middlebury College presents “Breathe,” a multimedia performance event in the college pool on Saturday and again on Sunday, at 8 p.m.
Artist in Residence Gabriel Forestieri, along with Loren Kyoshi Dempster (composer) and Adrian Jevicki (writer/visual artist), transform Middlebury’s natatorium with a contemporary water opera that combines song, movement, light, dance, water, music and text.
A live feed both underwater and on the deck displays to the board above the pool. A travelling choir mixes with a soundscape composed directly from the space itself, using contact microphones both out of and in the pool. The entire natatorium transforms into an interactive installation that plays on dimensions of air, water and light, blending these possibilities of sound, space and perspective.
The cast is a mix of athletes, performers and professionals, contributing to an unconventional performance with many surprises.
Tickets are $12 for general admission. Call the college box office at 443-6433 or order online at middlebury.edu/arts/boxoffice.
INTERNATIONAL FILM SERIES
The 2016-2017 Hirschfield International Film Series continues on Saturday at Middlebury College with the 2015 Chinese film, “Mountains May Depart,” directed by Zhangke Jia.
China, 1999 — In Fenyang, childhood friends Liangzi, a coal miner, and Zhang, the owner of a gas station, are both in love with Tao, the town beauty. Tao eventually marries the wealthier Zhang and they have a son he names Dollar.
China 2014 — Tao is divorced and her son emigrates to Australia with his business magnate father.
Australia — 2025. 19-year-old Dollar no longer speaks Chinese and can barely communicate with his now bankrupt father. All that he remembers of his mother is her name….
The film, in Cantonese with English subtitles, will screen at 3 and again at 8 p.m. in Dana Auditorium on College Street (Route 125). It’s free. Some of the films in this series may be inappropriate for children.
TWO BROTHERS TAVERN
There will be two live performances this week at Two Brothers Tavern located at 86 Main Street in Middlebury. Join Two Brothers every Wednesday at 9 p.m. for The Open Mic, an evening of music, comedy or anything else. Alternately hosted by Mark Sikora and Kai Stanley, come cheer on your friends or let loose on the stage. It’s free to enter and there is no cover charge.
Then, on Friday, the tavern presents The Starline Rhythm Boys at 6 p.m. The Starline Rhythm Boys are the real deal. These cool cats play an authentic mix of rockabilly and country that’ll make you feel like you’re in a Texas Juke Joint. Two Brothers is thrilled to welcome them back for a special dinner-hour performance. Reservations and walk-ins welcome.There is a $3 cover charge. For more information, call Two Brothers at 388-0002.
LIVE MUSIC AT 51 MAIN
There will be two live musical events this week at Middlebury’s 51 Main. At 7:30 p.m. on Friday, the Erin Cassels-Brown Trio take to the stage. Erin Cassels-Brown is a songwriter and musician from Burlington who has toured the East Coast and American south as a member of the honky-tonk outfit the North End Honeys and is a well-known face in the Burlington scene as a solo act.
Then, at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Root 7 will perform. Root 7 is a small, mixed ensemble a Capella group whose passion for music brings them together from across the Champlain Valley.
All ages, no cover. For additional information visit www.go51main.com or phone 388-8209.