VSO to visit Grafton

GRAFTON — The Vermont Symphony Orchestra's annual TD Bank Summer Festival Tour, presented by Northstar Fireworks, returns for 2019 with a July 3 performance at the Grafton Ponds Outdoor Center.

Gates open at 5:30 p.m. for picnicking, and the concert begins at 7:30 p.m. In case of rain, the concert will be moved to the Bellows Falls Union High School Auditorium in Westminster.

Making her VSO debut, guest conductor Sharon Lavery will showcase composers who set America to music: Gershwin, Joplin, Bernstein, Copland, and one of the most prominent film composers of this generation, John Williams.

Lavery has served as music director of the Downey Symphony Orchestra since 2007 and maintains an impressive career that includes multiple instances of conducting at Carnegie Hall.

Performing in a jazzy concerto by Artie Shaw, the VSO's own principal clarinet Kelli O'Connor is the tour's featured soloist. O'Connor is a founding member of the Chameleon Arts Ensemble of Boston and Radiance Woodwind Quintet. A former member of the U.S. Coast Guard Band, she also performed at the inauguration of President Bill Clinton.

Strike Up The Orchestra! will also include the patriotic Liberty Bell March and Stars and Stripes Forever; compositions from popular films like Captain Marvel, Superman Returns, and Jurassic Park; and many more selections - complete with closing fireworks at each location.

Smoking and animals (except assistance and service animals) aren't allowed at any VSO show, but patrons are encouraged to bring a picnic, blanket, folding chairs, and whatever they need to comfortably enjoy the outdoors, such as insect repellent and water. Sun umbrellas are welcome until the start of the concert. Flashlights are also suggested for after the show.

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