Tapestry Singers presents Songs of Maine

Mon, 05/27/2024 - 8:30am

Tapestry Singers will perform concerts on Saturday, June 15 and Sunday, June 16 at 4 p.m. at the Damariscotta Baptist Church as a belated celebration of the Maine Bicentennial. The group had planned the concert for June 2020 and then the pandemic shut everything down. The concert will feature Castlebay, a local duo who specializes in collecting and performing the music of Maine. The program includes folk songs of the woods and the waterfront, Algonquin and Penobscot water songs, and arrangements of Shaker tunes. One hymn is by so-called "Yankee Tunesmith." Supply Belcher, who created sacred vocal music for local choirs. Also on the program are arrangements of French Canadian and Scottish folks songs. Three of the pieces on the program are based on the works of some of Maine’s most prolific poets (Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and Philip Booth).

Tapestry Singers is also pleased to feature two current composers from Maine. The a cappella piece, “Guiding Light” by Matt LaBerge combines lofting melodies and stunning harmonies to present his poignant poetry. It invites the singer and the listener to heal and strengthen themselves by reaching out to find inner peace. Tapestry Director Beth Preston first heard “Guiding Light” sung by her Lincoln Academy students who were participants in the Maine All State Festival Choir under the direction of Bob Russell. Stuart Gillespie’s arrangement of the folksong, “Mary’s Dream”, was tailor-made for soprano soloist, Julia Lane with a tender choral refrain, “Oh Mary weep no more for me”. Julia found this beautiful ballad of a lover lost at sea and shared it with Stuart awhile back. The two of them revisited it and Stuart finished this arrangement for Tapestry Singers.  

As part of the Bicentennial Celebration, Tapestry Singers will also present Castlebay in a free lecture performance at the Lincoln Home in Newcastle on Sunday, June 2 at 2 p.m. The duo, Julia Lane and Fred Gosbee, will present musical stories of Maine: romance, ramblers and rogues, woven with history and humor. 
Tickets for the June 15 and 16 concerts can be purchased online. https://www.tapestrysingersmaine.org/tickets/
Limited tickets may be available at the door.