‘Concerts Under the Sky’ is back

  • Davis Bates Contributed photo

Staff Report
Published: 6/17/2019 8:43:22 AM

The Cushman Library at 28 Church St. in Bernardston will host the second performance of its “Concerts Under the Sky” summer series June 20 at 7 p.m. with a rain date of June 25.

Davis Bates, an award-winning performer, will present “Celebrating New England in Songs and Stories for Everyone.”

The program will include farming stories and songs from the past and present, sea songs and chanteys, Native American stories, ghost stories and family tales.  There will also be plenty of sing-alongs and a short lesson in how to play music with spoons from a kitchen drawer.

Pete Seeger called Bates a “thoughtful, creative, human, and a fantastic storyteller.” Bates’ traditional and participatory style is refreshing and empowering, encouraging audiences of all ages to join in the fun and to take the songs and stories home with them to share with others. He also encourages listeners to remember and tell stories from their own family and cultural tradition.

Bates has been performing for 40 years, in schools, libraries, colleges and community settings around New England and across the country. His recording of “Family Stories” won a Parent’s Choice Gold Award and was named one of the year’s best audio recordings by Booklist Magazine and is available as a free download via his website, www.davisbates.com.  Bates has also served as director and consultant for several local and regional oral history and folk art projects.  Bates lives in the village of Shelburne Falls. When he isn't collecting or learning stories, he spends his time acting in local theater productions, gardening and working on various pollinator preservation projects.

The performance will take place by Powers Institute Pond, which is behind Cushman Library.

Folks are encouraged to bring along lawn chairs and blankets, and picnic dinners to enjoy during the performance. In celebration of the summer reading theme of space, the audience is invited to view the night sky through telescopes that will be shared by two library patrons at the end of the performance. This performance is funded in part by a grant from the Bernardston Cultural Council, a local agency that is funded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a State agency.  Cushman Library is open on Mondays from 2 to 6 p.m., Wednesdays 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

For more information on Cushman’s programs call 413-648-5402, or drop by during open hours.




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