Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

March 6, 2014

Out & About: Choral 'Sampler' from New England Classic Singes

The Andover Townsman

---- — New England Classic Singers celebrates the rich tradition of 20th century American choral music in “An American Sampler: Songs of Love and Nature” on Saturday, March 8, at 7:30 p.m. at the Rogers Center for the Arts at Merrimack College, 315 Turnpike St., North Andover.

Under the direction of David Hodgkins, the program will feature Ronald Perera’s “Why I Wake Early,” a selection of eight poems by Pulitzer Prize-winning American poet Mary Oliver. A resident of Provincetown, Oliver’s poetry is inspired by her observations of nature during her infamous walks in and around Cape Cod. Perera captures Oliver’s poetry in his colorful use of string quartet, piano and chorus.

Also on the program will be works by Aaron Copland, Irving Fine, Robert Stern and Eric Whitacre.

Perera will open the program with a pre-concert talk at 6:30 p.m.

Tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $15 for groups of 10. Children and students with ID are free. For more information, visit or call 978-474-6090 or the Rogers Center box office at 978-837-5355

Spotlight on women poster exhibit

Colorful posters highlighting International Women’s Day, which is celebrated worldwide annually on March 8, are the featured exhibit this month at Memorial Hall Library, 2 North Main St., Andover.

The display features examples from the collection of Stephen Lewis, who owns more than 4,500 posters. A long-time activist in the labor movement and the former treasurer of his union. Lewis has exhibited his posters at public libraries and state Heritage Parks in Massachusetts.

For more on Lewis’ collection, visit his Facebook page under labor/progressive political posters.

March Musical Madness at Faith Lutheran

Faith Lutheran Church on South Main Street hosts its March Musical Madness featuring a winter concert, Italian dinner and raffle on Saturday, March 8.

The musical program, which starts at 6 p.m., will showcase Faith’s senior choir, bell choir, the Children’s Chimes choir, Praise Band and acoustic guitarist Bill Hartzell.

An Italian feast follows at 7 p.m. and will include a raffle of more than 15 gift baskets.

Funds raised will help the church obtain a challenge match grant from Thrivent Financial for Lutherans to support its ongoing work with Creative Living in Andover, Bread and Roses soup kitchen in Lawrence and scholarships to Camp Calumet Lutheran Camp in West Ossipee, N.H.

The church applied for the Neighbor to Neighbor grant last fall. Thrivent will match 50 cents on every $1 raised by the church, up to $5,000. Faith is hoping to raise $10,000 to obtain the maximum $5,000 match.

The proceeds of the raffle on Saturday and a freewill offering to the performance will go toward the cause. A $10 donation is suggested. For more information or to donate to the event, visit or contact the church by email at info@faith-andover,org or by calling 978-475-4059.

English literature to a hip-hop beat

Canadian rap troubadour Baba (Dirk Murray) Brinkman Jr. turns English literature on its head with his performance of “The Canterbury Tales Remixed,” a show linking hip-hop lyrics with Geoffrey Chaucer’s timeless tales, on Tuesday, March 11, at 6:30 p.m. in the Writers House at Merrimack College, 315 Turnpike St., Andover.

Brinkman, who holds degrees in English literature, uses his literary know-how to unconventional and engaging use, bringing the tales of Chaucer and other literary works to life with his award-winning “lit hop,” hip hop rap.

The Writers House is dedicated to creative writing, reading and thinking, and welcomes students, faculty, alumni and the community at large.

Brinkman’s performance is free. Visit for more.


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