Category Archives: Music

Nantucket Arts & Festival News

Pirate Radio, a new rock and roll comedy film, will be shown in a special advance screening on Tuesday, November 10th, 2009 at the Tribeca Grand Screening Room (2 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY). The screening will be followed by a conversation with the movie’s writer/director Richard Curtis, moderated by Vanity Fair Special Correspondent Maureen Orth and a cocktail reception to benefit the Nantucket Film Festival. Tickets are $150 and can be purchased via email at or by calling 212.708.1278.

Starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, Bill Nighy, Rhys Ifans, Nick Frost, and Kenneth Branagh, Pirate Radio is the newest ensemble comedy from filmmaker Richard Curtis (screenwriter of Four Weddings and a Funeral and Notting Hill, and writer/director of Love Actually), spinning the irreverent yet fact-based tale of a seafaring band of rogue rock and roll deejays whose “pirate radio” captivated and inspired 1960s Britain. The film will be released nationwide on Friday, November 13th.

The fifteenth annual Nantucket Film Festival (NFF) takes place June 17th-20th, 2010. They are currently accepting submissions for next year’s lineup and for Showtime’s Tony Cox Award for Screenwriting. Submissions will be accepted through the official festival website ( and at beginning in January. The deadline for submissions is March 12th.

The new album from Jake Vohs is available at CD Baby.

The Artists Association of Nantucket’s Fall Classes & Workshops is registering for fall classes.

Children’s classes begin on Oct. 31, and include Exploring Autumn, Sculpture, Arts & Crafts, Comic Book Creations, Draw, and Print & Paint.

For adults and teens over 15, classes begin October 27 and include Beginner/Intermediate Wheelthrowing, Clay Holiday Votives, Figure Drawing, Drawing, Charcoal Drawing, Figure Drawing Open Studio, Watercolor Painting, Multi-Level Oil Painting, Oil Painting, Beginning Painting Critique, Digital Photography Workshop, Intro to Mac, Intro to Photoshop, Intermediate Photoshop, and Graphic Design Principles for Web Design.

Click, or stop by One Gardner Perry Lane for details.

The Nantucket Dreamland Foundation “ENCORE!” arts education program is in full swing. Some of the classes that have not yet begun are: Acting the Ingenue…:(The Villian, and the Comedic Character), Acting for the Little Ones: Story Telling With Many Hats, Tiny Stars: Dress-Up Workshop, Hip Hop/Jazz Dance Classes, Blast from the Past Dance Class, New Stars Hit Broadway, Beginner Tap Class, Make Your Own Fall Centerpiece, Make Your Own Winter Centerpiece, A Holiday Gift Giving Idea for Little Ones, A Holiday Gift Giving Idea for Teens, and Gingerbread House Making.

The “ENCORE!” programs will be held in Saint Paul’s Church and The Nantucket Yacht Club. The Programming guide is online at


Grace Potter on Nantucket

Grace Potter & the Nocturnals

Tuesday, August 4th, 2009 at The Chicken Box

By Regan Flynn</i

Photos by Amanda Morgan

Waiting anxiously for Grace Potter’s sold out show to begin, I noticed that I was at a decidedly different Chicken Box. The predominately over twenty-five crowd pushed closer to the stage as the countdown to show time began. In addition to the more mature and far less raucous audience, there were large metal barricades blocking off the entire stage, something I personally have never seen at the Box. My lucky proximity to the bouncer at the secret-knock side door allowed me to overhear several comments from ticket holders indicating I wasn’t the only one who thought this level of security was strange.

It’s now past 11, the fans are eight deep against the barricades, and I find myself wondering, what’s the deal with this chick anyway?

My questions were about to be answered, as Grace Potter & the Nocturnals were ushered in with secret service-like intensity by a guy wearing a gas station attendant shirt with ‘Elmo’ stitched on the breast. Grace was as hot or hotter than everyone had said, and the male Nocturnals could’ve been mistaken for Stillwater (the rock band in Cameron Crowe’s award-winning Almost Famous), were they not dressed in their best business-casual attire: slacks, button-downs, and vests.

“Well, well, well” is all Grace said before they launched right into “Joey,” a funky, sultry jam with a screaming crescendo that left me feeling like I’d just been spanked – in the good way. The next two tracks brought Grace to the keys and the crowd to attention. “Mastermind” had a bit of a pop/country feel and was an easy connection for the audience, while “Toothy” provided that bouncy, reggae feel that islanders love so much. The two and a half that followed brought us back down, with a bluesy, R&B-style grind. Halfway through “Ah Mary,” however, we were jolted back to life with some straight up killer rock & roll, which resulted in mass amounts of head banging pioneered by Grace herself. I was blown away by the strength, range, and mystifying quality of Grace’s voice and was equally drawn to Matthew Burr, the captivatingly happy drummer with the handlebar mustache.

The next few songs were all about Ms. Potter. The tantalizing mood was set off not only by red lighting, but Grace’s sexy dancing, impeccable vocals, and intense lyrics had everyone enthralled. Knowing we were hooked, the band went right into “Some Kind,” a ho-down, happy hippie jam session that had everyone jumping and left Grace “warm”.  What a perfect time for the “White Rabbit” cover we were all hoping for. For reasons I’ll never understand, Grace nailed the first verse and chorus, but then it was abruptly over. I have to assume there were technical difficulties, because the next song started just as suddenly and was loud as hell – in the bad way.

Lucky for all, they got it together and busted some serious funk with a major jam session followed by a fun a cappella sing along. To say that the last encore left me feeling satiated would be an injustice. The track, which ended in the entire band on the drums together, was “Ballroom Blitz” meets the Allman Brothers and B52’s on one stage.

I think I get it now. This is an extraordinarily talented and borderline upscale jam band with a smokin’ hot front woman, something we’ve not seen in the past. The fact that we were just lucky enough to go on a musically intricate journey with them and all the while watch Grace’s well . . . everything . . . makes us feel like it must be our lucky day.

Grace Potter and the Nocturnals have something so exceptional and flat-out hot that we, unfortunately, may never see them on Nantucket again. If they do decide to keep coming back to our special island, I doubt we will get to see them for twenty bucks. And that, quite simply, is the deal.

Regan Flynn is a freelance writer living and working on Nantucket for the summer.

Nantucket Youth Concert

At student performances here on the island, I’m always surprised by the caliber of the performances, the seriousness and aplomb of these young artists, and the acceptance, encouragement, and appreciation of the student audience – a well played difficult and esoteric classical cello piece is applauded as enthusiastically as a lively acoustic rock tune. Their teachers, their parents, and their peers all should be applauded. And we are blessed to have River Bennett on this island.

The Youth Benefit Concert took place on Monday, July 27, 2009 at the Methodist Church, produced by NHS grad River Bennett. It included performances by The Cobbletones, Caleb Kardell, River and Zeb Bennett, Lia Newman, Isaiah Williams, Nick Davies, Evelyn Hudson, Kerry Fee, Aiden Sherry, and more. Donations benefited Play Pumps International, the Nantucket School of Music and The Methodist Church. I missed the first half, but here are some photos of the second. More at

Nantucket Arts

Nat Philbrick’s book “In the Heart of the Sea”, the National Book Award winner about the Nantucket whaling ship Essex, will be made into a major motion picture directed by Edward Zwick, according to Variety. Zwick has written, directed, and/or produced “thirtysomething”, “Once and Again”, “Legends of the Fall”, “Glory”, “About Last Night…”, “The Last Samurai”, “Blood Diamond”, “I Am Sam”, “Traffic”, “Shakespeare in Love”, “My So-Called Life”, and many more.

The script was written by Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz, who has partnered with Zwick on most of his projects. Fox is likely to distribute the film, and production is expected to begin later this year. There is no indication that any scenes will be shot on Nantucket.

Songwriting Workshop with Pierce Pettis

What makes a good song work? Songwriter and musician Pierce Pettis answers that question in this two hour workshop designed for anyone who loves music and loves the musicality of language — you don’t have to be a musician to participate. Pettis will discuss the songwriting process, illustrate by playing examples, and work with workshop participants to create new music. Pierce Pettis will perform a concert of his work at the Nantucket Whaling Museum on Sat. March 28.

Pierce has released 7 albums, has been a writer at Muscle Shoals Sound Studios, recorded for Fast Folk Musical Magazine, won the New Folk competition for songwriting at the Kerrville Folk Festival, and was a staff songwriter at Polygram and Universal Music Publishing in Nashville. He received a 1999 Country Music Award for ‘You Move Me’, recorded by Garth Brooks on his album, Sevens.

Workshop space is limited. Sign up at 508-228-1110 ext 118. $20 admission payable on the night of the workshop. Friday, March 27, 6:30PM-8:30PM in the Gallery of the Nantucket Atheneum.

The Artists Association Winter Workshops begin on March 21, and include:

  • Katie Trinkle Legge: Painting with Water-Mixable Oil
  • George Thomas Workshop: Watercolor, Pastel & Beyond
  • Alison Hall Cooley: Create-a-Postcard Workshop
  • David Lazarus: Oil Painting Workshop
  • Azra Willmot-Smith & Beth English: A Moveable Feast of Fashion Workshop Series
  • Brendan Lawlor: Computer Animation for ages 12-18
  • Lou Guarnaccia: Plein Air Oil Painting
  • David Lazarus: Watercolor Workshop
  • Kelly Knight: Weaving and Tapestry
  • Ashley Mott: The Artist’s Journal
  • Russell Wieland: Digital Photography for Beginners

Register by calling 508-228-0722 or onlin eat

An article in the I&M this week by Josh Gray talks about the impact of the economy on the arts, often the first funds to be cut in a bad economy. Reggie Levine and Gene Mahon speak for the Nantucket Arts Council. Also interviewed are Mollie Glazer from the Nantucket School of Music, Molly Anderson from the Nantucket Atheneum, Steve Young from WCAI-WNAN, Susan McGinnis from Seaside Shakespeare, Jane Karakula from the Theatre Workshop of Nantucket, and Bruce Beni of the Nantucket Artists Association. Read the full article on the I&M website, and if you are able, make a donation to your favorite arts organization.

The Nantucket Arts Council is now accepting applications for grants and scholarships of $500 to $2500 each. Application forms are available at the Nantucket Atheneum, High School main office, online ay, or by calling 508-325-8588. Applications must be mailed or received by Monday, March 16, 2009 for the 2009 awards. Mail to the Nantucket Arts Council Grants & Scholarships, POB 2176, Nantucket, MA 02584. The Arts Council grants and scholarships are made possible in part by the generosity of Dr. and Mrs. Walter Boyd and Family and the Weezie Foundation.

This Week on Nantucket 1.26.09


Nantucket School of Music Faculty Concert
Sat, Jan 31, 2009 at 2:00pm at Preservation Hall

Classical, Baroque, Jazz, Popular, Blues, Folk and original compositions.
Cherie Cseley and Robert Behrman: Messiaen theme and variations for violin and piano
Mollie Glazer: Pieces for solo viola da gamba of C.F Abel and Marin Marais
Jason Sullivan & Aiden Sherry: Jazz selections for two guitars
Mollie Glazer and Andy Bullington: Andy’s original composition “Mexico” and jazz standards on guitar and piano
Marcia Hempel: Political Science, by Randy Newman & The Cloud Factory, by Bill Caddick — Voice and Piano.
Tom Stoddart & Andy Bullington: Chicago Blues Style music, via harmonica / vocal / guitar
Suggested donations at the door.

The Shingles
Sat, Jan 31, 2009 from 4:00pm – 5:00pm at Chicken Box

$5 for adults, children under 16 free.


Superbowl Sunday “Sex & the City”
Sun, Feb 1, 2009 from 1:30pm – 4:30pm at Rose & Crown

“cock”tails, and demonstrations by Athena with product available for purchase. LADIES ONLY from 1.30pm-4.30pm,
guys allowed in after 4.30.

Air Hockey Tournament

Friday, January 30, 9:00 pm, Rose & Crown


Poker Night
Mondays at 7:00pm at Rose & Crown

Trivia Night
Tuesdays at 8:00pm at Rose & Crown

Earth and the Blues
Thursdays from 6:00pm – 8:00pm at Rose & Crown

Eric Wendelken – Upright Bass, Andy Bullington – Guitar, Jake Vohs – Drums and Tom Stoddart – Sax and Harp.

Thursdays from 10:00pm – 1:00am at Rose & Crown

80’s Video Dance Party
Fridays at 9:00pm at Rose & Crown

Open Mic Night
Saturdays at 8:00pm at Chicken Box

Runs every Saturday night through the winter. All musicians or singers should be there at 8 pm to see Joel to sign up.

Top 40 w/ DJ Bri Guy
Saturdays at 9:00pm at Rose & Crown

Nantucket Winter Concert Series


“Opera, Operetta & Art Songs,” a performance by internationally renowned soprano Maria Ferrante on Sunday, February 8, will lead off the Nantucket Arts Council’s Winter Concert Series. Under the direction of Arts Council board member Dr. Gerry Mack, the four concert series will bring professional artists to the island for performances at affordable ticket prices from February through April.

“The Winter Concert Series is dedicated to carrying out the Arts Council mission of providing year-round arts programming to the Nantucket community,” said Dr. Mack. “This winter more than ever it’s important for us to carry out this mission to benefit our year-round residents, many of whom can’t afford to go to performances of this caliber in Boston, New York and even on the Cape.”

Series tickets are available by contacting the Nantucket Arts Council at 508-825-8588. Download the Winter Concert Series brochure, or pick one up at the Atheneum, The Bean, Bookworks, Mitchell’s Book Corner and Dan’s Pharmacy. Tickets are available at Bookworks, Mitchell’s Book Corner and Dan’s Pharmacy. Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for members, and students are free. All of the Sunday afternoon performances will take place at 4 p.m. at the Coffin School, located at 4 Winter Street.

Sunday, February 8, 4 p.m.
“Opera, Operetta and Art Songs”
Maria Ferrante, soprano
Brett Maguire, piano

World class talent Maria Ferrante, winner of the prestigious Mario Lanza Voice Competition, has appeared with major orchestras and in recitals throughout the U.S. and in Vienna, Prague and the Virgin Island. Her opera credits span Verdi (La Traviata, Otello, A Masked Ball); Mozart (Magic Flute, Cosi Fan Tutte, Marriage of Figaro); and Puccini (Turandot, La Boheme, Madame Butterfly); to Pergolesi’s La Serva Padrona and Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel. The Nantucket program will include favorite arias from opera and operetta as well as compelling American art songs and musical gems from Broadway shows. Accompanying Ferrante will be pianist and organist Brett Maguire, who has performed widely in the U.S. and Europe. He won first prize in the Andre Marshal International Organ Composition in France and has performed with the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops and the Tanglewood Summer Festival Orchestra. For more information, go to

Sunday, March 8, 4 p.m.
“Classical Duo”
Armen Ghazaryan, violin
Levon Hovsepian, piano

Armen Ghazaryan, an accomplished violinist and a favorite of Nantucket classical audiences, will be joined by pianist Levon Hovsepian, a prize winner at the Arlington Concerto Competition, who made his successful New York debut in 1994. The classical duo will perform monumental classical romantic and contemporary compositions by Beethoven, Chopin, Schumann, Fritz Chrysler and Donald Fox.

Sunday, March 22, 4 p.m.
“Jubilee Trio: Songs of Struggle and Resolution”
Robert Honeysucker, baritone
Marion Dry, mezzo soprano
Leslie Amper, piano

The Jubilee Trio, founded in 1995, was inspired by the biblical tradition of the jubilee spirit celebrating the freeing of the slaves. Their music is moving and uplifting and ranges from the highly sophisticated to the pure and simple, featuring great African-American spirituals, folk and art songs.

Sunday, April 19, 4 p.m.
“International Chamber Ensemble”
Julian Milkis, clarinet
Borislav Strulev, cello
Sima Kustanovich, piano

This acclaimed trio’s diversified program ranges from the romantic music of Mendelssohn and Brahms to the rhythmic, contemporary, jazz-like compositions of Astor Piazzolla.

Nantucket Arts News

Joe Landry who wrote the adaptation for “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play”, will be in the audience for the Friday, December 12th production, and will do a Q & A either before or after the show. Joe Landry’s plays have been produced across the country, and include “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play”, “Reefer Madness”, “Eve & Co.”, “Beautiful”, “Hollywood Babylon”, and “Numb”. His other adaptations include “Death in Venice” and “Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play”. A reception will likely be added to the program that night. Curtain is 7:00 pm at the Coffin School. The play is performed as a 1940s live radio broadcast in front of a studio audience, directed by Laura Gallagher Bryne

I met with Executive Director Colin Stanfield and Artistic Director Mystelle Brabbée from the Nantucket Film Festival here on-island this past weekC looking for feedback from people involved with the Festival. Colin is now the Executive Director of the NFF, after Festival co-founder Jill Burkhart stepped down last month after 13 years, assuming the position of Chairman of the Board of Directors. Colin was the Festival Programmer for the 2008 Festival. He’s a film producer for Amerique Film (“Puffball” and “Restless”), has been a Festival Producer at Silverdocs AFI Discovery Documentary Film Festival, and the Manager of International Programs at IFP/New York.

Audrey Obremski has published a compilation of weekly columns written for The Inquirer and Mirror, entitled “Audrey on Nantucket”. “It’s an overview of year-round, everyday life in a summer playground for the rich and famous written from the perspective of someone who is neither rich nor famous.” Audrey offers her opinion on the disappearance of small businesses and the middle class, rampant consumerism, colonoscopies, bake sales, the futility of war and fruit flies, and more. The book is illustrated by island artist and actor John Devaney. Married with four daughters, she currently resides in Costa Rica and is working on a second book entitled “Audrey Goes Wild”. It should be in our local bookstores.

Quidley & Company has opened their new gallery in Boston on Newbury Street, under Gallery Director Sara Boyce, formerly of the Brigham Gallery on Nantucket.

Miss Fairchild’s new album “Won’t Be Your Kept Woman” is available for purchase at iTunes and Amazon (recommended for highest quality). It’s a four song EP of original music that includes a redo of “Excuse Me Mr.” entitled “Excuse Me, Sister”.

Cecil Barron Jensen will become the Managing Director of the Artist’s Association of Nantucket beginning December 8.

Donick Cary and The Irresistibles

Comedy writer Donick Cary celebrated his 40th birthday at the Muse on August 23rd with the reunion of the Irresistibles, the 1980s legends first appearance in more than 20 years, with Nantucket High School graduates David Yacus, Chris Glowacki, and Henry Hastings. Other members were Geoff Mattoon, Cal Farney, and Ted Donat. With the help of the Nantucket Education Trust, and in coordination with all the music department heads, was created MUSACK (Music Underwriter Service and Concert Klub), a non-profit fund that will buy instruments, lessons, equiptment, and help fund travel for the program. There will also be a fund that students can apply to for music related causes: software, travel, etc. To contribute to the fund, send checks to NET/MUSACK, c/o Donick Cary, 6 Dukes Rd., Nantucket MA 02554 Donations are tax deductible. Photographs by Gene Mahon.

Click on any photo to see more from this event or the archive of past events. For a high quality digital file you can use to make as many prints as you like, contact me. To order a copy of any photograph, click on the photo, then click on this event on the list on the left and find the ID number. Send an email with the photo number to me at

If you see anyone you know in these photos, please forward the newsletter to your friends and encourage them to subscribe. Go to the very end of this newsletter, and click the “Forward email” link. (Forwarding through your own email program will not send the correct newsletter version.)

Nantucket Arts Festival Live & Local

The Nantucket Arts Council presented several Live & Local concerts at the Rose & Crown during the Nantucket Arts Festival between August 29 and September 7. Photographs by Gene Mahon and Amanda Morgan.

Nantucket ClamStock Music Festival

Nantucket Arts Festival ClamStock, Saturday, August 31st. Photographs by Gene Mahon.

Click on any photo to see more from this event or the archive of past events. For a high quality digital file you can use to make as many prints as you like, contact me. To order a copy of any photograph, click on the photo, then click on this event on the list on the left and find the ID number. Send an email with the photo number to me at

If you see anyone you know in these photos, please forward the newsletter to your friends and encourage them to subscribe. Go to the very end of this newsletter, and click the “Forward email” link. (Forwarding through your own email program will not send the correct newsletter version.)