Play Every Town

251 252 Community Concerts for a Cooler Climate


Concert Fifteen: 10/7/22 at the Chandler Music Hall

...donations benefited VPIRG Votes

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White River Valley. Randolph village is the little line of white in the center

The a statue of the performer

Teaching on 10/31/18. That statue is a pretty good representation!

The hall’s stately 1907 façade

The Randolph concert was in the magnificently restored Chandler Music Hall, built in 1907 and rescued from a state of total decrepitude in the 1970s by a devoted and persistent group of Randolphians headed by Martha Ostlund. This was just our second concert in a full-fledged dedicated concert hall (as opposed to a church, Grange, art gallery, or other multi-purpose building, or a performance space converted from another use). It is worth mentioning that thus far, every venue has generously made its space available to us free of charge. In the case of the Chandler, this represents a substantial in-kind donation to the project.

The program

Chandler executive director Karen Dillon filled in Randolph

With Jennifer Grout and her daughter Kamar. The flowers are actually Jennifer’s

On this concert I had the privilege of accompanying Randolph’s Jennifer Grout جينيفر جراوت. Jennifer studied Western classical music at McGill University, but early on found her way to Arabic classical music and is now an internationally acclaimed vocalist in traditional Arabic and adjacent styles. This concert marked her return to Western classical performance after a long hiatus. I don’t know if I was more impressed by her artistry or by her ability to shift gears between European classical technique and the Arabic vocal style of the Jad Salameh song, which entail quite different modes of vocal production. The title of Salameh’s touching song, “Grow Where Your Roots Are”, is an apt motto for this whole project.

Jennifer sings “Ganymed” by Franz Schubert    lyrics

“Grow Where Your Roots Are” by Jad Salameh

× Grow Where Your Roots Are (Jad Salameh)

Against a hurting heart, I hold you
Dear son, I have loved you
On my cheek, a running tear
In my heart, a growing fear

You are leaving, you’ll be wandering,
With little hope of returning

You are leaving, you’ll be wandering,
Just keep on remembering

Against an aching heart, I hold you
Don’t you let go, I beg of you
Droplets of tears, stream down my cheeks
On my face, a smile disappears

You are leaving, you’ll be wandering,
With little hope of returning

You are leaving, you’ll be wandering,
Just keep on remembering

A wanderer never forgets the lay of the land
In his own heart, a secret love commands

Scarlatti Sonata in E minor, K.15 (preceded by 15 ii-V-I’s)

Schubert Sonata in A major D.664

“Another Time” by Eve Beglarian

...about the piano

Martha Ostlund, the driving force behind the massive rehabilitation and renovation of the Chandler in the 1970s, determined in 1983 that the once-again magnificent space required a commensurate piano. She began a capital campaign to purchase a new Steinway D concert grand. When some board members expressed concern about the $25,000 goal, Martha said “There are people out there who want to make a contribution, if you just give them the opportunity.”

The largest donation came from Clara Hendin, in honor of her mother, Marian Tully Dimick (sister of Alice Tully, namesake of the NYC concert hall). Vermont pianist and technician Dale Howe accompanied concert pianist Robert Schrade to the Steinway showroom where they selected serial #483118 Model D, manufactured in 1983. Roman Markowicz gave the dedicatory concert on Oct. 13, 1984, playing a propgram of Bach, Beethoven, and Chopin (Martha’s favorite).

I did not play any Chopin, and I played a bit of modern music, which was not Martha’s bag. But as then-director Janet Watton reassured pianist Steven Masi in 2004 when he expressed concern about programming Stravinsky at Martha’s memorial concert: “Without Martha’s great work, Chandler would not have moved into the 21st century—but now it has!”

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last updated June 19, 2023