Avenues of Vermont’s rich musical and religious history will appropriately be given due homage through a series of organ shows taking place this summer. One of four remaining organs built during the 19th-century by Randolph Center native William Nutting Jr. is ready, through the directing hands of Green Mountain College music director James Cassarino, to melodiously embellish the walls of East Poultney’s St. John’s Episcopal Church. These 13 musical events are part of an Evening Prayer Series taking place every Saturday at 4 p.m, beginning June 7 and ending August 30th are held together by chair of executive committee Ida Mae Johnson. Nutting’s organs are described as a universal destination,“one that organists would actually travel to see and play”, by an ebullient Cassarino. Among other musicians taking part in this special event are Karl Moyer of Pennsylvania, and Carl Schwartz, a resident of Warren summer.
On Friday, May 2 at 7 p.m. in Ackley Hall The Green Mountain College Choir presents "In Nature's Realm,” a program celebrating nature and our relationship with it. Highlights will include works by Haydn, Hovhaness, Randall Thompson, Dvořák, Ann MacDonald Diers, and John Rutter. Several of the works are inspired by the nature writings of Henry Beston, Robert Frost, and Walt Whitman. The concert, directed by GMC music director James Cassarino, is free and open to the public.
Joanna Tebbs Young wrote a story on the Green Mountain College music program in her Circles of the Community column in the Rutland Reader. "Within the walls of the white-columned Ackley Hall in its adorable little theatre I have heard and been very impressed by GMC’s well-dressed (and well-traveled) choir, which, directed by associate professor and Music Department Chair, James P. Cassarino, is equally comfortable performing gospel, folk, or popular music as it is classical." The article promoted concerts at the College. Read the full article.
On Sunday October 20, at 3 p.m., The Church on the Hill in Weston, Vt. will host a recital titled a “Musical Bouquet ” as part of Weston’s annual Bachtoberfest Weekend. The recital will feature instruments, voices, and the church’s historic one manual Jardine pipe organ. The concert will include music from the Baroque era. Prof. James Cassarino (music) will serve as organist, accompanying music colleagues and several students from Green Mountain College in an afternoon of enjoyable music.
Internationally acclaimed pianist Diana Fanning will perform the first public recital on Green Mountain College’s new concert grand piano in the Clara Hitchcock Fitzpatrick Jones Concert Auditorium, Ackley Hall, on April 27 at 7:30 p.m. Her program will include works by Mozart, Brahms, Chopin, Gershwin, and Debussy.
In the spring of 2012 Green Mountain College exceeded its fundraising goal for the purchase of the piano, a Yamaha G5 professional grand. Diana Fanning, music professor at Middlebury College, has toured extensively as a solo performer throughout the eastern U.S. and in England, France, Austria, Switzerland, Holland and Germany. Ms. Fanning has also performed on numerous occasions as a concerto soloist with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra. Radio audiences hear her frequently over Vermont Public Radio, and she has also performed live on "Morning Pro Musica" (WGBH-FM) Boston and on WNYC, New York City.
The concert is free and open to the public.
Prof. James P. Cassarino (music) had his article “Welsh-American Congregational Singing and the Cymanfa Ganu (Hymn Singing Festival) in the United States” published in the spring issue of the journal The Hymn, of the North American Hymn Society.
Prof. Jim Cassarino (music) presented a series of lectures on Welsh-American musical traditions at the annual conference of the North American Festival of Wales held in Scranton, Penn., last weekend with over 450 people in attendance. In addition to Cassarino, presenters included faculty from the University of Wales (Cardiff), Brigham Young University, and the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point.
The GMC Choir and Cantorion performed a highly successful concert tour in Cape Cod and Newport, R.I. over the weekend for large and enthusiastic audiences, including many GMC alumni. Saturday’s program in Harwich Port was a joint concert with the all male chorus “We are the Men.” Sunday’s performance was held in historic St. Mary’s Church which is the oldest Roman Catholic Church in R.I. (1832) and was the location for the marriage of Jacqueline Bouvier to John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
Paul Emerson Opel worked as an adjunct in the music department for ten years, coordinating the applied music program and providing instrument lessons for students. He was deeply involved in all things musical at GMC.
He passed away at the age of 55 on March 1, 2012, surrounded by family in the home he lovingly restored.