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Art, Drama, Music and Books
Art, drama, music & books

Princeton Nassoons to Perform December 16 at Bronxville Public Library PDF Print Email

Dec. 11, 2013: The Princeton Nassoons, one of the nation's oldest collegiate a cappella groups, will perform a holiday concert at the Bronxville Public Library on Monday, December 16, at 7:00 pm.

The concert, sponsored by Friends of the Bronxville Public Library, is free and open to the public. A reception will follow the performance.

The Nassoons' website says, "Founded in 1941, we have sung our signature four-, five-, and six-part harmonies alongside the likes of Ella Fitzgerald, the Lettermen, and Ben Folds. We tour the globe three times a year, sharing our music, dancing, and jokes with audiences that have included three U.S. presidents, the King and Queen of Jordan, vacationers in Cancun, screaming school children in Taiwan, and socialites in Monte Carlo."

Pictured here: The Princeton Nassoons.

Photo courtesy Bronxville Public Library

Sing We Enchanted to Perform Holiday Concert Saturday, December 21, at Reformed Church PDF Print Email

Dec. 11, 2013: Celebrating its 20th year, the a cappella group Sing We Enchanted will present a light-filled program of early to contemporary carols--from the casual to the sublime--on Saturday, December 21, at 1:30 pm at The Reformed Church of Bronxville.  

Take a little time out from your holiday preparations and relax to the sounds of American, English, French, and German carols. The family-friendly program features Christmas gems of Costeley, Victoria, Reger, Howells, and Macdonald, as well as other traditional tunes, fun jazz arrangements, and familiar favorites. Audience members are invited to meet the artists at a reception following the concert. 

Sing We Enchanted, now in its twentieth season as a Westchester-based a cappella ensemble, performs in venues across the tristate area. Repertoire includes early music, sacred and secular works in a variety of languages, and contemporary American and English selections. Sing We Enchanted is committed to entertaining audiences with new and old a cappella musical works that are typically not widely performed. 

Ensemble members include Nell Macdonald, artistic director, mezzo-soprano; Nancee Adams-Taylor, soprano; Randi Alberino, mezzo-soprano; Kate Ashby, soprano; David Eggers, tenor; Linnea Johnson, mezzo-soprano; Erik-Peter Mortensen, baritone; Lauren Palazolo, soprano; Miran Robarts, soprano; Spencer Smith, bass-baritone; and Laurie Thomashow, soprano.

The suggested donation is $20 and $10 for seniors and students. Donations are also being accepted for Elizabeth's Hope, an organization that provides funding for research for pediatric brain cancer. 

For more information, please visit, e-mail CLOAKING , or call 914-610-6701. You can also visit our Facebook page at

Pictured here:  Members of Sing We Enchanted singing in The Reformed Church of Bronxville

Photo by Amanda Pendleton

'A Christmas Carol' to Be Performed by Concordia Conservatory December 6 to 8 PDF Print Email

Dec. 4, 2013: More than 85 local students will perform in a holiday production of the musical A Christmas Carol, presented by Concordia Conservatory from December 6 to 8 at the Schoenfeld Campus Center on the campus of Concordia College. Performance times are below.

All performers and crew members are from the region, hailing from the Bronx, Bronxville, Cos Cob, Eastchester, Larchmont, Mount Vernon, New Rochelle, Pelham, Old Greenwich, Scarsdale, Tuckahoe, and Yonkers.

This is the conservatory's fourteenth annual musical production and features children ages 8-18 who complete an audition and interview to participate. The productions are part of the conservatory's tuition-free community outreach program. The yearly musicals are funded through private donations to Concordia Conservatory.

A Christmas Carol is based on the Charles Dickens holiday classic about Ebenezer Scrooge, a miserable old man who mistreats everyone in his life. Mr. Scrooge is transformed by the spirit of Christmas when he receives a visit from three ghosts on Christmas Eve.

The cast and crew are led by stage director Kathleen Suss and music director Greg Suss, with set designer Eric Zoback, lighting designer John Flanagan, and choreographer Jen Littlefield. Marcy Damasco and Sharon Shearon are the production's producers.

Performance Schedule:

December 6:  4:30 pm and 7:00 pm
December 7:  11:00 am and 1:30 pm
December 8:  1:00 pm and 3:30 pm

Tickets are $22 for adults and $11 for children/seniors. To purchase tickets and for more information, please call 914-395-4507.

Pictured here:  The cast of a Concordia Conservatory production in a recent musical.

Photo courtesy Kathleen Suss, Executive Director, Concordia Conservatory of Music & Art

James Joyce's 'Dubliners' to Be Performed at Sarah Lawrence College December 12, 13, 14 PDF Print Email

Dec. 4, 2013:  An original theatrical adaptation of James Joyce's Dubliners will be performed on December 12, 13, and 14 at 7:00 pm in the Suzanne Werner Wright Theatre at Sarah Lawrence College. There is no charge, but tickets are limited. Please call 914-395-2412 or email CLOAKING . for reservations. 

The brainchild of Sarah Plotkin '14, the concept of exploring the Joyce text in a theatrical way was born in a course President Karen Lawrence, a Joycean scholar, teaches at the college.

Plotkin took the course Who's Afraid of James Joyce in her sophomore year. "Karen showed me a different way of looking at Joyce, a way that allowed us to study and discuss the characters without judging or condemning them," she said. "She also encouraged the class to apply our study of Joyce to our other interests."

During her junior year abroad, Plotkin mentally refined the concept of adapting the work. When she returned to campus this year, her studies included a theater course in which she constructed an outline of events she wanted to include, along with blocks of text she thought would work well in a show, and pulled together an ensemble she directs.

The professor lent her time to the production. In October, President Lawrence attended a rehearsal and led a discussion with the cast, giving some background on Dubliners and Joyce's life. "Karen has been very helpful in our process of understanding the text as an ensemble," said Plotkin. "Her passion for the book was contagious."

Created collaboratively by the ensemble over nine weeks, the unusually long rehearsal period allowed the group to incorporate movement, music, improvisation, and puppetry into the production--part of the theater department's mainstage fall season. Using the book's text as a structure for the show, Plotkin explained, the ensemble experimented to create an original production.

In Dubliners, fifteen stories unfold in a parade of moments as the characters share their memories, nightmares, and dreams. "It is an event of struggle and epiphany," explained Plotkin. "The characters are trapped in a metaphorical cycle of struggle and realization, never actually leading to action."

Pictured here:  Members of the cast of Dubliners in rehearsal.

Photo courtesy Judith Schwartzstein, Director of Public Affairs, Sarah Lawrence College

Photo by N. Bower

Kyle Swanson, Bronxville High School Senior, Named to All-State Band PDF Print Email

Nov. 27, 2013:  Flutist and piccolo player Kyle Swanson, a Bronxville High School senior, has been named to the 2013 All-State Symphonic Band. The announcement came from the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA), which sponsors the All-State Conference each year for high school juniors and seniors. The 2013 conference will take place December 5-8 in Rochester, New York, with concerts in the Eastman Theatre.

Swanson has been a student of Joseph Piscitelli's at Hoff-Barthelson Music School in Scarsdale since he began recorder lessons as a kindergartener, switching to flute in third grade and adding piccolo in seventh grade. At Bronxville High School, he plays in the band, orchestra, and pit orchestra for the high school musicals. At Hoff-Barthelson, he plays in the elite Festival Orchestra and in a chamber ensemble during the school year and works as a teaching assistant during the summers. This year, he is also taking an advanced music theory course there with Edmund Niemann, with whom he has studied music history and completed the Advanced Placement Music Theory course, earning the highest possible score on all components.

Sharon Slote, director of the Bronxville middle and high school bands, said that Swanson "plays both the flute and piccolo with astounding technical prowess. His preparations for performances and auditions alike are far beyond those of a typical high school student. It has been an absolute pleasure to work with Kyle for the last six-plus years, and I will miss him and all he has to offer musically when he attends college next year."

Over 6,500 sophomores and juniors throughout the state auditioned for All-State at their local NYSSMA solo festivals last spring, performing solos and sight-reading before adjudicators. Approximately 900 students were chosen to perform in one of eight vocal and instrumental ensembles at the conference.

The last two Bronxville High School band members selected for All-State honors were flutist Holly Rudd in 2008 and clarinetist John Devlin in 2002. Rudd is now a first-year graduate student in flute performance at the New England Conservatory; Devlin is a doctoral student in orchestral conducting at the University of Maryland School of Music.

Pictured here:  Kyle Swanson.

Photo by Donna Devlin

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