The Vermont women's chorus Bella Voce didn't take a lot of time to rest on the laurels of last fall's well-received CD, Now Let Us Sing! The latest project of the 40-voice group directed by Dawn Willis is an ambitious work entitled Lessons from the Sea, a cantata by Vermont composer Gwyneth Walker featuring texts from the Ann Morrow Lindbergh bestseller Gift from the Sea. The author's daughter Reeve Lindbergh, herself a writer who lives in the Northeast Kingdom, will perform as Narrator at three concerts this weekend. Bella Voce presents Lessons from the Sea on Friday, April 4, at Bethany United Church of Christ, Montpelier, 8 p.m.; Saturday, April 5, at North Congregational Church, St. Johnsbury, 7 p.m. (at this show, Walker will be presented with the 2008 Athenaeum Award, honoring her achievements in the arts); and Sunday, April 6, at Shelburne United Methodist Church, 3 p.m. Tickets at the doors are $15.
Visitors to Burlington this summer could find themselves stumbling onto a movie set. Rich Docherty of Burlington and John Oliver of Williston have arranged with the Vermont Film Commission to shoot their $500,000 comedy Dumping Lisa over 22 days in June. The movie concerns two buddies who hire themselves out to help "confrontation-challenged" men dump their girlfriends, but get more than they bargained for when they meet the titular Lisa Klinger. Docherty, who wrote and is co-producing, says it's "in the Superbad, Wedding Crashers, Knocked Up vein."
Docherty - a recent Vermont transplant - and director Oliver both have extensive experience in television production; the former won an Emmy for documentary cinematography, and the latter snagged two for producing NBC coverage of the 1996 Summer Olympics. Though they're casting the principal roles in New York, Docherty says they're "using a lot of local help," including production assistants from Burlington College and BC grad Nate Beaman as lighting director. "The community's really been supportive," says Docherty, who's scouted 24 downtown locations. He adds that a Burlington shoot doesn't entail as much bureaucratic red tape as, say, one in Manhattan: "Economically, it's much more feasible than going somewhere else."
Writers and artists, take note: Burlington College is currently taking submissions for a new literary journal, The Queen City Review. The biannual magazine, to debut next fall, is the brainchild of Editor Heidi Berkowitz, who teaches in the college's department of Writing and Interdisciplinary Studies. She'd like the journal to have a national profile, and to showcase "physical art, photography, creative writing, nonfiction, essays of all sorts."
Berkowitz describes the Review as "a product of the community, even though it will be published by Burlington College. I've been blown away by the artwork and the creative writing and the essays that my students have worked on, and the artists who are working in the Burlington community." Send queries by May 1 to
firstname.lastname@example.org; artwork should be sent as .jpg files.