Arts Beat for July 6: Festival on-the-Green offers entertainment for the whole family

Middlebury’s exciting Festival on-the-Green continues on Tuesday. Here are the highlights. At noon, Stephen Gratto will present a Brown Bag Special performance for the whole family. At 7 p.m., the Miles Donahue Quintet, described as “a jazz treasure,” hits the stage. Then, at 8:30 p.m., Darlingside will perform. “A quartet with a rich line in acoustic textures and chamber-rock dynamics,” says one enthusiastic reviewer.
On Wednesday, at noon, No Strings Marionettes, the husband-wife team of puppeteers Dan Baginski and Barbara Paulson, presents entertainment for the whole family. At 7 p.m., Caitlin Canty, a Vermont native who has been described as “the next great Americana star,” will perform. Then, at 8:30 p.m., festival audience members will be treated to The Mike & Ruthy Band. You can expect “jubilation, as exciting and powerful as any quintet currently mixing up fiddle plus banjo with drums, bass and pedal steel.”
On Thursday, at noon, Robert & Gigi will perform for young and old alike. Then, at 7 p.m., the six members of The Bluegrass Gospel Project, “infuse their sound with one part melancholy, two parts celebration, giving (their music) depth that’s never heavy.” Then, at 8:30 p.m., Heather Maloney hits the stage. “Her music is riveting, her voice adventurous, her lyrics thought-provoking,” says one reviewer.
On Friday, at noon, magician Tom Verner will present magic for the kids in all of us. Then, at 7 p.m., Vance Gilbert, described as having “the voice of an angel, the wit of a devil, and the guitar playing (ability) of a god,” will perform. That will be followed at 8:30 p.m. by Ray Vega, “one of the innovators of the international jazz and Latin music scenes.”
As always, the festival comes to a spirited conclusion on Saturday evening at 7 p.m. with the Vermont Jazz Ensemble Big Band Dance. Come early for dance lessons with Jim Condon.
Although all festival events are free, donations are always gratefully accepted. For more information call 462-3555 or visit festivalonthegreen.org.
On Friday, at 7:30 p.m., the Salisbury Congregational Church will sponsor an evening of the lively traditional music of Atlantic Crossing.
Having performed across the U.S. and UK, and having been designated “American Masterpiece Artists” by the Vermont Arts Council and the Vermont Folklife Center, Rick Klein, Viveka Fox, Peter Macfarlane and Tristan Henderson will be returning with their fiddles, banjo, mandolin, bouzouki, bodhran and vocals to perform their special mix of songs from Quebec, Maritime Canada, the British Isles and New England.
In recent performances and recordings, they have introduced original songs based on regional lore and arrangements of songs drawn from the Flanders Collection of New England folk music at Middlebury College.
This will be the second event in Salisbury’s 36th annual Summer Performance Series, which will continue on Friday evenings through Aug. 7 at the historic, but handicap-accessible, 1838 church in Salisbury Village. Although the church tower will be scaffolded for repairs during this season, the sanctuary will still be readily entered through the front doors and the on-grade rear entrance.
Although admission is free. a donation in support of the series will be appreciated.
Jocelyn Pettit and her band will perform at Brandon Music on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Hailing from the West Coast of British Columbia, Pettit is a vibrant fiddle player, stepdancer, singer and composer. She delivers an engaging and uplifting performance of original and traditional music inspired from the Canadian and Celtic cultures of Cape Breton, Québec, Ireland, Scotland, Brittany and Galicia.
The four-piece band performs a high-energy fusion of folk traditions they call “Blazing New-Trad Celtic” with Canadian stepdancing, lively fiddling, podorythmie foot rhythms and vocals, backed by piano, guitar and percussion.
Pettit has performed on stages across Canada, the U.S., Scotland, France, and Malaysia and received two Canadian Folk Music Award nominations for World Artist of the Year and Young Performer of the Year.
Tickets are $20. A pre-concert dinner is also available for $20. Reservations are highly recommended for the show and required for dinner. 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.
There will be four live musical performances this week at Two Brothers Tavern in Middlebury. Join Two Brothers every Wednesday at 9 p.m. for the Open Mic, an evening of music, comedy or anything else. It’s free to enter, and there is no cover charge.
At 6 p.m. on Friday, Two Brothers presents Shaded Gray, featuring local musicians Simon Broucke, Olivia Cacciatore, Matias Van Order Gonzalez, Micah Rubin and Tobias Broucke. They play melody-driven indie rock that combines powerful vocals with intricate instrumentals.
Then, at 9 p.m. on Friday, Second Half will perform. Second Half features the classic rock-inspired compositions of local guitarist Ken Burton.
Finally, at 9 p.m. on Saturday, Hamjob returns to the Tavern’s stage. A trio of talented musicians from the greater Rutland area, Hamjob combines different musical blends and backgrounds to create a profoundly unique mash-up of funky, bluesy, fuzzy, and progressive tones. There is a $3 cover. For more information, call 388-0002.
After playing to a full house last year, Middlebury native Mike Sommers is returning to Middlebury’s Town Hall Theater in “Uncle Buzzy’s Hometown Theater Show” on Sunday at 5 p.m.
Sommers has spent the last 20 years acting and writing in California alongside such stars as Cate Blanchett, Robin Williams and Christopher Walken. “Uncle Buzzy” has grown since 2004 out of the creative explorations of three entertainers of varying agricultural backgrounds. Accompanying Sommers are Bay Area actors, writers and composers Ted Wee (originally from Madisonville, Ky.) and Lawrence Radecker (hailing from Metairie, La).
Over the past decade, the trio has concocted an evening of hilarity with a deeper goal: “attracting attention to the plight of small farmers and creating a greater awareness of our environment.”
Tickets are $15 and may be purchased at townhalltheater.org, 382-9222, at the THT box office (Monday-Saturday, noon to 5 p.m.) and at the door, if available.
LC Jazz, a 17-piece “big band,” is back for their third show-stopping evening at Lincoln Peak Vineyard Friday, July 10, from 6 to 8 p.m.
The ensemble has been playing jazz standards from the big band era — Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Sammy Nestico and other swing jazz greats — for 20 years. Don’t forget your dancing shoes.
For all Wine Down Friday shows, the “doors” open at 5:30 p.m. for picnicking. Food will be for sale by Almost Home, and wine will be sold by the glass.
Admission is free. Bring lawn chairs or a picnic blanket. The Wine Down Friday series happens rain or shine — there’s room on the winery porch in the case of rain. No alcohol may be brought onto the grounds, and please leave your pets at home. Lincoln Peak Vineyard is located at 142 River Road in New Haven. For more information visit lincolnpeakvineyard.com.
The Rochester Chamber Music Society opens the Green Mountain Suzuki Institute Week with a kick-off concert, “Seeing Double,” on Sunday, at 4 p.m. in the Rochester Federated church.
“Seeing Double” is a unique concert of all duo violin music, proving that the music of two violins can be much more than the sum of its parts. The audience will be taken on a journey from Baroque to Jazz, with compositions by Telemann, Bunch, Mozart, Suk, Bart?k, Summer, R?sza and O’Connor, to name just a few.
Although admission is free, a donation in support of the series is always welcome. For more information call 767-9234 or visit rcmsvt.org.
The Middlebury College Summer Carillon Series continues its 30th year of concerts with a 5 p.m. performance on Friday in Mead Chapel by Gordon Slater, Canadian Dominion Carillonneur Emeritus.
Enjoy the sounds of the carillon bells from the chapel steps or, weather permitting, on the surrounding lawns. The free series continues every Friday through August with a different performer.
There will be one live musical event this week at Middlebury’s 51 Main at 8 p.m. on Saturday, when the DuPont Brothers will perform. Sam and Zack DuPont’s versatile songwriting stylings, blood harmonies and finger-style guitar arrangements have lead them to be paired up with a wide variety of national acts.
All ages, no cover. For additional information visit www.go51main.com or phone 388-8209.
In celebration of its 21st Summer Season, the Rochester Chamber Music Society presents its annual Bach Bash concert on Saturday in the Granville Town Hall. Professional and amateur musicians celebrate the music of Bach and others in this 7 p.m. public performance.
Although the concert is free, donations in support of the series are always appreciated. For more concert information call 767-9234 or visit rcmsvt.org.

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