“Fine & Dandy” Gala Celebrates Gershwin’s Muse, Composer Kay Swift

West Brattleboro, Vt. – Friends of Music at Guilford’s tenth annual celebration of Women in Music begins at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 14, and salutes Katherine Faulkner “Kay” Swift (1897-1993). She was a classically trained composer who became George Gershwin’s trusted musical advisor and companion. After Gershwin (1898-1937) encouraged her to compose popular music, Swift became the first woman to write a hit Broadway musical, “Fine and Dandy” (1930), now the borrowed title for FOMAG’s gala.

Some of both genres of music will be performed at this house-concert benefit for FOMAG’s current 53rd season. The program opens with a piano transcription of the Overture to “Fine and Dandy,” performed by Virginia Eskin, and later includes Swift’s Theme and Variations for Piano and Cello, performed with cellist Rebecca Hartka. Eskin will also accompany several songs from Swift’s musical theater and film scores featuring vocals by Jessica Gelter and Tony Grobe.


“Stolen Jewels”: Gems for Flute & Piano

FOMAG artists

Guilford, Vt. – Friends of Music at Guilford, now in its 53rd concert season, presents “Stolen Jewels,” its Midwinter Musicale, on Saturday, February 23, at 3:00 p.m. in the sanctuary of Guilford Community Church. Alison Hale, flute, and Christopher Lewis, piano, both busy teachers and guest artists, will perform four romantic duets transcribed for flute that were originally scored for other instruments with piano. The program of chamber favorites includes the Brahms Sonata in F minor for clarinet, the Schubert Arpeggione Sonata for Cello, the three Romances for Oboe by Schumann, and the Sonata in A Major for violin by Fauré.


53rd Labor Day Weekend Festival: Organ Recital & Orchestra Lawn Concert

Guilford, Vt. – As it has done for over a half-century, Friends of Music at Guilford (FOMAG) opens its 53rd annual music season with a concert in a rural barn on Saturday night of Labor Day Weekend. The Organ Barn is in an idyllic setting near the state line where Guilford meets Leyden, Massachusetts. The intimate Barn seats close to a hundred concertgoers, and on Sunday afternoon, two hundred or more people flock to the lawn outside the Barn for picnicking and an orchestra concert.


A Cappella à la Carte on June 8: Supper and Songs

Guilford, Vt. – Friends of Music at Guilford (FOMAG) presents its 52nd season finale on Friday, June 8, an annual three-part event dubbed “A Cappella à la Carte.” Set at two neighboring churches in the Algiers village of Guilford, just over a mile south of Exit 1 off I-91, the evening’s menu includes a short meeting, a potluck picnic, and a 7:30 concert of vocal music. Each optional segment is open to the general public; admission to the concert is by donation.

Beginning at 6 p.m. in Christ Church, at the corner of Melendy Hill Rd. and Rt. 5 south, the FOMAG Annual Membership Meeting is typically short and entertaining, and offers a summary of the year, a look ahead to next season, and election of the board of trustees.