The Vermont Chapter of the American Guild of Organists has designated prof. James Cassarino (music) as the “2014 Artist of the Year.” The award is in recognition of his work at GMC, his work as an organist, and for his scholarship in hymnology. Acknowledging the honor, Cassarino will perform a recital in the spring that will include music for organ, choir, brass, and woodwinds. Assisting artists will include colleagues whom he has collaborated with throughout the years.
The Green Mountain College Choirs, GMC Festival Brass and guest musicians will present their annual spirited holiday concert in the Clara Hitchcock Fitzpatrick Jones Concert Hall (Ackley) Saturday, December 6, at 7 p.m. This popular event will offer lively music for the season and provide opportunities for the audience to join in the singing of favorite carols. A festive reception with refreshments in Withey Lobby follows the performance. The Green Mountain College Jazz Ensemble will also perform its annual concert in the Gorge on Monday, December 8 at 7 p.m. Directed by Gary Schmidt, the ensemble will perform an eclectic program of jazz standards. Both concerts are free and open to the public.
On Saturday, December 6, at 7 p.m. the Green Mountain College Choirs, GMC Festival Brass and guest musicians will present their annual spirited holiday concert in the Clara Hitchcock Fitzpatrick Jones Concert Hall (Ackley). This popular event will offer lively music for the season and will provide opportunities for the audience to join in the singing of favorite carols. A festive reception with refreshments in Withey Lobby follows the performance. The Green Mountain College Jazz Ensemble will also perform its annual fall concert in the Gorge on Monday, December 8 at 7 p.m. Directed by Gary Schmidt, the ensemble will perform an eclectic program of jazz standards. Both concerts are free and open to the public.
The GMC/Community Concert Band will perform its annual fall concert on November 21 at 7 p.m. in Ackley Hall. Directed by prof. James Cassarino (music), the ensemble will play works by Monteverdi, Vaughan Williams, Mendelssohn, Mozart, and Ravel. Highlights will include Monterverdi’s Toccata for double ensemble, and the second movement from Mozart’s Piano Concerto # 21. The piano soloist will be Jean Sutton, director of applied music at GMC. The band includes students, faculty, and members of the community. The concert is free and open to the public.
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.