Jerry’s spent a lot of time around books! He talks about the old days at Brooks Library, the beginning days of our Literary Festival and the Words Project – and how he’s now helping folks find their roots as a genealogist. Tune in for some great stories and insights about delving into the past – in our town and in our families.
The Next Stage Bandwagon Summer Series and Sandglass Theater’s Puppets in the Green Mountains festival present a musical folktale about courage in relation to the modern-day themes of migration.
Many stories from Africa have traditionally been passed down by word of mouth. Tears by the River is one of these stories. Krystal Puppeteers sing, drum, puppeteer and dance in this vibrant and joyous performance. A brave monkey, LIBENDI, leaves his land after a great famine has killed many of his fellow monkeys. His adventurous “safari” takes him far off to a river where, after losing his energy from days of walking through valleys and mountains, deserts and barren land with no food and water, he dies beside the river before he can taste the life-giving water. Animals from the forest come to honor him by naming the river after Libendi. This prompts the “bigger” animals and “kings” of the jungle to be jealous to the point of doing crazy things to become famous as well.
Traditional theater in Kenya is distinguishable by its masks, drums, chants, and narratives. The Giriama people of the east coast of Kenya often perform with gigantic wooden figures. Turkanas, Maasai and Kamba tribes use fertility clay and wooden dolls called ikideet or gnide dressed in leather and decorated with coloured glass beads and costume jewelry. All of these elements can be found in Tears by the River, a contemporary puppet theater show that unfolds through images, sound and movement. Celebrating the oral traditions of Africa, these kinds of traditional stories are meant to prepare young people for life, and so, each story teaches a lesson or a moral.
Gordon Clark and his Vermont Comedy All-Stars return for a night of stand-up comedy at Next Stage Arts, following their enormously successful shows in November and March. Featured performers will include several contest-winning and touring comedians most often seen in the Burlington area.
“We all need reasons to laugh, and the Vermont Comedy All Stars do an outstanding job,” says Keith Marks, Executive Director of Next Stage Arts. “Comedians will be coming from all around the state to perform – partnering with the All Stars allows them to reach a new audience in the southern part of the state, and build a new following.”
The cast of stellar performers includes:
Next Stage Arts Project and Twilight Music present an evening of swing and Americana music by Zara Bode’s Little Big Band and StompBoxTrio, as part of the 2022 Next Stage “Bandwagon Summer Series,” on Sunday, August 28 at 4:00 pm on the lawn at New England Center for Circus Arts in Brattleboro, VT.
Zara Bode’s Little Big Band performs classic American swing to delight the ears, eyes, and feet. Inspired by the likes of Duke Ellington, Django Reinhardt, and Ella Fitzgerald, the Little Big Band features top shelf chanteuse Zara Bode (of Signature Sounds artists The Sweetback Sisters) and a sizzling horn section led by clarinetist and arranger Anna Patton. From chic to cheeky, the southern VT-based septet digs into the classics with aplomb and affection, creating vibrant new takes on the old radio hits.
The Next Stage Bandwagon Summer Series and Twilight Music present an outdoor concert with the Soggy Po’ Boys on Saturday, August 20th at 6:00 PM, at Putney’s Cooper Field.
“Although New Hampshire isn’t the most obvious home for a group so devoted to the culture of The Big Easy, the Soggy Po’ Boys seem genuine in their ambition to spread the word about jazz New Orleans style, and they’re creating an accessible and fun way into this world.” -London Jazz
The Soggy Po Boys, native to New England, have quickly become an institution. They are spreading the good news of New Orleans music across the northeast and beyond, playing at concert halls and street corners; music festivals and burlesque festivals; bars and libraries; wherever the party requires. Part of the beauty of New Orleans music is that it’s celebrated and appreciated wherever it goes, from the street to the theater.
Next Stage’s Bandwagon Summer Series presents Slavic Soul Party! on Sunday, August 14 at 6pm at the Retreat Farm: “New York’s Official #1 Band for BalkanSoulGypsyFunk”
“Easily one of the most exciting artists we’re bringing this summer, Slavic Soul Party checks all the boxes,” says Keith Marks, Executive Director of Next Stage Arts. “They’re masters of the Roma style of music that encapsulates dancing energy, old world sounds, and they make it so fresh and new that audiences from around the world have hailed them as one of the greatest contributors to the genre. This show is going to be fun!”
International artists Sackett and Ahmed Zaghbouni aka MR MiC join forces to bring a fun and energetic performance entitled “BeatBox MEETS Popping.” Amirah is a hip-hop dancer, choreographer, and educator based in Chicago, IL. Her signature style is the funk style dance known as ‘popping’. As a proud Muslim American, she combines Islamic themes with her dance to share the universal beauty of her faith with audiences of different faith backgrounds to promote unity and understanding. Ahmed Zaghbouni is an international beatboxer and filmmaker from Sousse, Tunisia. His performance always entertains the audience with disbelief by the sounds he creates only using his mouth and voice as an instrument. He is proud of his Muslim heritage and the Sufi faith traditions native to his home of Tunisia. These two Muslim artists, bonded by faith and their love of hip-hop, offer a counter narrative to the media’s portrayal of Muslims. Both Ahmed and Amirah are dedicated to preserving and sharing hip-hop culture with the next generation and audiences around the world, as well as being examples of using art for social change.
Authentic Polish food, stories of leaving the homeland, and all Borscht sales donated to the Ukraine – plus everything served up with humor and heart – Andrzej and his Polish Food Stand – a Brattleboro treasure, indeed. (now located in West Bratt.)
STEPHEN DOTSON is all over the place! As Brattleboro’s Sustainability Coordinator he talks to everyone – from our road crews to the Rich Earth Institute – and collaborates to find real, practical and creative ways to help all of us live healthier and happier lives in this community.
Putney, VT- Sandglass will present their own newest show for families, Oma, with a special musical score composed by Molly Gawler and the Gawler Family Band. Oma says that knitting is not just pom pom hats and sweaters. Oma’s knitting contains whole stories! This new family show by Shoshana Bass and Jana Zeller is an intergenerational tale that revolves around Grandma or “Oma.” It is her birthday and all are preparing for the celebration. While the grown-ups manage work phone calls, playdate logistics and other such tasks, the children get into mischief with party decorating, present wrapping, cake baking. Finally they all gather around for one of Oma’s stories told in yarn. One character emerges from the tangle of wool and nearly ruins the party. But not to worry, all ends well at Oma’s house.
We say Farewell and Happy Trails to one terrific man who managed and supervised Brattleboro’s infrastructure for 47 years – trouble-shooting from the hip and getting the jobs done. Steve retired at the end of 2021, leaving us in good hands with Dan Tyler who worked with Steve for many years.
A press release announces the fun:
“Antiques Roadshow is Coming to Shelburne Museum!
Time to rummage through your attic! ANTIQUES ROADSHOW will make its first visit to Vermont on July 12 at the Shelburne Museum for an all-day appraisal event as part of the series’ 27th production tour.
For Sara Coffey, people come first. In this show, Sara shares stories of how anthropology, dance, and early travels widened her experience and her curiosity — and how she discovered community engagement as a mighty force that creates and connects, from the Arts arena to being a Vt. State Representative.
We always get a new perspective when talking to local youth!
Thank you, AVA WHITNEY for sharing your stories, insights and experiences of growing up here in Brattleboro.
I thought we could retire this one last year, but now it’s a becoming a regular holiday special. Here it is again, the COVID Christmas Anti-Viral Holiday Special… stay safe everyone!
Join Mara Williams as she tells stories about her adventures as Curator for the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, featuring Red Grooms, Wolf Kahn, Jim Dine and the many local luminaries who helped put BMAC on the map.
Next Stage Arts, Yellow Barn, Vermont Jazz Center – Julian McBrowne, Audio Engineer extaordinaire brings great sound and harmony wherever he goes – from our local venues to world tours and even a Caribbean island. Take a listen!
I had to laugh last night during the Selectboard meeting. Dick DeGray, a former board member, called in to suggest putting lights in a park to illuminate a monument at night. It’s a good idea – flags and monuments should be lit, in my view – but it reminded me of our sock puppet selectboard special in which the sock puppet board debates putting lights in a park.
Enjoy the memories:
Addiction, trauma, abuse – Don Cuerdon helps folks to heal and recover. He also talks about the early days of the ever-popular West Hill Shop and lots about cycling!
We will be having our Veteran’s Day Ceremony Thursday Nov. 11th at the Brattleboro VFW located at 40 Black Mountain Road. Doors open at 10 am and the ceremony starts at 11 am. The public is welcome to attend. There will be no Legion Band this year, but we are having a free meal for those who attend the ceremony.