Arts & Entertainment

The North Country Community Chorus brings Spring Concert to the St. Kieran Community Center for the Arts

BERLIN--Under the direction of Christian Labnon, the North Country Community Chorus will bring their voices together to raise the roof and our spring spirits on two separate occasions; Friday, May 16 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, May 18 at 2 p.m.

This enthusiastic group will be performing a diverse selection of music to include "Joshua Fought the Battle of Jericho" and "You're the One that I Want" from Grease. The spring performance is the first of what we at the Art Center hope will be another yearly tradition with the chorus. The idea, according to Christian, is to have the strength of the event grow every year and evolve into something to which we can all look forward as we try to escape from the long cold months of winter. Whether you are in the chorus or the audience, the music is sure to please!

We hope you'll join us to hear the beautiful sounds of this local group as well as for these upcoming events:
June 20, 7 p.m. – Symphony NH Brass Quintet
July 15, 7 p.m. – International Musical Arts Institute
July 28, 7 p.m. – Annalivia (part of a special series with Skye Theatre)

Tickets for this program will be available at the door ($12.00 for adults and $6.00 for minors). Series ticket holders may simply present membership cards. Colonial Theatre members presenting their membership cards will receive a $2 admissions discount. Don't forget to like us on Facebook at St Kieran Community Center for the Arts!

Sunday's program is made possible by the support of the N.H. State Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the N.H. Charitable Foundation, North Country Art Ventures fund, an Anonymous Fund, the Libby Family Fund, the North Country Region Community Fund and the Stanton and Elizabeth Davis Fund.


Letter Carriers Food Drive Saturday

ANDROSCOGGIN VALLEY – Don't forget to leave out your food donations for the annual National Association of Letter Carriers Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive this Saturday, May 10.
Letter carriers in the Berlin, Gorham, Milan, Randolph, and Shelburne area will be collecting donations of non-perishable goods when they deliver your mail. The food items will be sorted and given to local food pantries and soup kitchens.
Postal customers are asked to use a plastic or paper bag and donate non-perishable foods only. For safety reasons the carriers cannot accept anything that has been opened or anything like cookies, bread, meats or foods that can spoil. They will accept factory-sealed boxes of cake mix or cans of frosting to put on that cake. The drive also will accept personal hygiene, cleaning products and paper products.

Hiroya Tsukamoto in concert May 12

GORHAM- The Medallion Opera House will host Hiroya Tsukamoto in Concert on Monday, May 12 at 7 p.m. Admission: Adult-$10.00, Students $5.00. Hiroya is a one of a kind composer, guitarist and singer-songwriter from Kyoto, Japan. He began playing the five-string banjo when he was thirteen, and took up the guitar shortly after. In 1994, Hiroya entered The Osaka University and while at college in Japan, Hiroya was introduced to a musical and social movement in South America called Nueva Cancion headed by musical legends such as Victor Jara and Violeta Parra.

In 2000, Hiroya received a scholarship to Berklee College of Music and came to the United States. He is also the recipient of the Professional Music Achievement Award. Hiroya completed a debut album entitled "The Other Side of the World" with his band INTEROCEANICO, released in 2004. His composition entitled "El Otro Lado del Mundo" was nominated as the finalist of The USA Songwriting Competition 2004 and "Samba de Siempre" in 2005, also "Seventh Night" was the finalist of International Acoustic Music Award in 2006. Hiroya released his second album entitled "Confluencia" in 2006 and the third album "Where the River Shines" in 2008. Hiroya's recent album is "Heartland" which was released in August 2012 from 333discs. In October 2012, Hiroya performed live on Japan Public TV (NHK) on the program "El Mundo".

Hiroya has been performing concerts with his group including several appearances at Blue Note in New York and he performed with Esperanza Spalding, Marta Gomez, Kendrick Scott (The Crusaders), Pete Kennedy (The Kennedy's) and Dave Maxwell (Muddy Waters Band).
Trevor Lewis of the Rochester City Newspaper recently published a concert review: "All I knew about Hiroya Tsukamoto before seeing him play Fringe Fest at Bernunzio's Thursday was that he is from Japan, plays guitar, and he played Jazz Fest this year. Of course his appearance at Jazz Fest had to be during the only summer I've spent outside of Rochester, so I didn't get the chance to see him. His style can be described as a blend of folk, jazz, and world music, so I really didn't know what to expect (and if anyone knew what to expect from a description like that, pat yourself on the back). What I didn't expect, though, was to witness one of the best live guitar performances of my life. But that's exactly what happened.

Tsukamoto took the stage and he played an hour-long set with a "VH1 Storytellers-esque" kind of vibe. Before most songs he would take a moment to tell the tale of the song's origin, making the already intimate show seem that much more so. While he sang in his native tongue, in some cases he would read the translated lyrics for the crowd before he played the song, a gesture that was much appreciated. In terms of musicianship, Tsukamoto's guitar work was just ridiculous.

Right from the beginning of his first song, it was obvious that the folks in Bernunzio's were in for a treat. His brand of finger-style guitar is so intricate, and so blazingly fast at the same time, I kept imagining how many clones I would need to make of myself to accurately replicate his sound. There were times it sounded as if there were two or three guitars playing simultaneously. One song that drove that point home was his set opener, "From Coast to Coast", a song that had some of the fastest harmonic runs I've ever heard."
Hiroya's concert on Monday, May 12 is sponsored by Yokohama Restaurant in Gorham.


Wit and Wisdom: Humor in Nineteenth Century New England

Whatever did New England villagers do on long winter evenings before cable, satellite and the internet? On Wednesday, May 14, at 7 p.m., Humanities scholar Jo Radner will come to the Gorham Public Library to give some surprising answers to that question. A writer, storyteller, and oral historian, Radnor's been studying wintertime amusements in rural nineteenth-century Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont.


It is not surprising that our ancestors warmed up those long, cold evenings with social entertainments from music and dancing to charades, sewing circles, and neighborhood suppers. In the decades before and after the Civil War, farmers and their sons and daughters would also compose and read aloud homegrown, handwritten literary "newspapers." Sometimes serious, sometimes sentimental but mostly very funny, these "papers" revealed the hopes, fears, humor and surprisingly daring behavior of our rural ancestors. Radner will talk about these lyceum "newspapers" and will share examples from nearby communities in Maine and New Hampshire.
Please join us in this free lecture and discussion on May 14 at 7 p.m. at the Gorham Public Library. This program is co-sponsored by the Library and the Gorham Senior and Adult program made possible by the Humanities To Go Program of the N.H. Humanities Council.

Jo-Radner-credit-Heather-KelleyPhoto taken by Heather Kelley.


Exploration of Pondicherry Wildlife Refuge May 24

Come explore the ecological diversity of Pondicherry. We will focus on the returning migrants but also will explore the refuge's ponds, wetlands, and spruce/fir forests. Bring binoculars and a lunch.

Exploration of Pondicherry Wildlife Refuge on Saturday, May 24 from 6:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. Participants will meet at Grant's Parking Lot in Glen. Donations of $5 per family or $3 per person are appreciated. For more information on Tin Mountain and upcoming nature programs visit, or call Tin Mountain at 603-447-6991.

Tin Mountain Nature Programs are sponsored in part thanks to L.L. Bean and the Evenor Armington Fund. Special thanks to the Residence Inn by Marriot, North Conway.