Mary Williams

Weekly Conversation on the Arts and Art Hounds Producer/Announcer

Mary joined VPR in October 2011. She earned a B.A. in Journalism from St. Michael's College and has spent the last two decades on-air and as a producer at several stations up and down the Champlain Valley radio dial.

Mary operated a baking business called, "Good Girls," and in the summer months, parked her hand-built vendor cart at area farmers' markets to try and change minds and bellies toward more compassionate eating, one vegan cupcake at a time.

 

Ways to Connect

Plainfield artist Michelle Wallace uses natural materials to create mandalas that she then photographs.
Michelle Wallace, artist

Michelle Wallace knows her gardens very well. "I have a deep love for the plants ... I think that's where this art is rooted," she said. Recently, those garden spaces have acted as her art supply store. The leaves, flowers, stems, seeds and pods that the Plainfield artist gathers become one-of-a-kind mandalas, which she photographs and then casts to the wind.

Actor, writer and director Rob Cunning relied on self-discipline, a group of supportive friends and resources he found online to create the film, "Haze." It took him the better part of three years to complete.
Rob Cunning, courtesy

With a with ton of self-discipline and 27 pages of script, Burlington's Rob Cunning made a featurette-length film with no money. Plus encouraging words from his film-making idol just days before beginning to shoot turned out to be priceless.

A new bluegrass band takes the stage in East Fairfield and two local actors read 50 years' worth of love letters in Middlebury.

Peacham Acoustic Music Festival, courtesy

An outdoor music fest, a chance to hear live Argentinian music performed by a diverse set of musicians and a step back in time and into some colonial homes.

Clever Girls' bandmembers are, left to right: Winfield Holt, Rob Slater, Diane Jean, and Tobias Sullivan.
Brett Marshall, Winwood LLC

If Diane Jean, from the Burlington-based band Clever Girls, was shipwrecked on a desert island, she knows just which five records she'd like to listen to until the rescue ship arrived.

Shape-note singing in South Hero plus a new exhibit of paintings in Greensboro are on the docket for arts events to take in around the region.

This photograph by Liam Lenel captures the detail of the finished murals by artist Sarah Rutherford in Jeffersonville. This marks the ninth year of the fine arts festival that fills Main Street in Jeffersonville with over 50 artists and artisans.
Liam Lenel

Main Street in Jeffersonville will be busy on Saturday. Its the 9th Annual Festival of the Arts presented by the Cambridge Arts Council. Over 50 artists in all media set up booths that line the street, ready to meet and talk about their life's work. And this year, a Lamoille Valley bike tour company is encouraging art lovers to take a new trail to get there.

This marks the 10th year that street performers will fill the Church Street Marketplace and City Hall Park with their craft during the Festival of Fools.
Andrew Krebbs/Burlington City Arts, courtesy

Celebrating the street performer is the spirit behind this weekend's 10th annual Festival of Fools in downtown Burlington.

A call to artists for theater submissions, a new art exhibit in Windham and a musical about headstones top this week's list of arts events.

(From l to r) Frog Hollow director Rob Hunter takes a floor mop to the interactive mural designs to make way for a new one; chalk pieces used to create mural; artist Tara Goreau pauses during drawing session; a young artist joins Goreau.
Rob Hunter/Frog Hollow, courtesy

The medium is impermanent but the artists and organizers behind the Community Interactive Mural project hope its imprint lingers.

Bookstock Literary Festival, courtesy

This weekend and next, plan on attending two unique concerts, a book and literature festival and a reading with a former poet laureate.

Next Stage Arts, courtesy

A prescription for a great weekend: try three very different plays and one night of tango!

Julia Luckett Photography

"When you're in a band and especially when you're touring, it's like being in a big marriage." That's the take from guitarist Nick Wood, with the Burlington-based funk-rock band, Gang of Thieves.

Wood and band-mate Tobin Salas, who plays bass guitar, recently sat down with VPR, fresh off the group's Work Together tour.

Last year's Do Good Fest welcomed over 5,000 spectators on the lawn at National Life headquarters in Montpelier. Again this year, the event is free and the $20 parking fee benefits Branches of Hope.
National Life, courtesy

This Saturday, the National Life building in Montpelier is opening up its "back lawn" and inviting a few friends over. It's the 4th Annual Do Good Fest, underwritten by the financial services company and boasting a musical line-up of national and local performers.

The 12th ShazamFest takes place this weekend, just a two-and-a-half-hour drive from the Burlington, Vermont area. The music festival boasts a wide variety of acts and performers, food and camping in a family-friendly atmosphere.
Mike Rigby, artist

This weekend is an overflowing clown-car full of arts events for every taste! Try an environmentally friendly music, arts and sports fest across the border in Québec, a block party in Waterbury or a play on the boards in Weston.

Lauren Palmer, courtesy

From outdoor concerts on meeting house lawns to open artists' studios, this weekend is packed with plenty to do in Vermont's arts-rich regions!

Live From The Fort logo
VPR

Live From The Fort features musicians from around the state performing live at the VPR studios in Colchester. Through music and casual conversation, the series connects music lovers with Vermont-based musicians.

Lots to do in the art world this holiday weekend like bluegrass music to raise awareness of blue-green algae and an auction of four-by-four-inch paintings in Stafford.

The 2016 Aphasia Choir in the McCarthy Arts Center;  Karen McFeeters Leary directing;  Jess McDonald, UVM speech pathology student (left) and Cheryl Lattrell, stroke survivor (right) enjoy a laugh during practice.
Jessica Clarke

How is it that survivors of stroke and certain brain injury are often unable to speak but they still can sing? The answer lies in the brain's physiology. By tapping into the undamaged right hemisphere, the stroke survivor can recall familiar melodies and express them through song. Enter, the Aphasia Choir.

Bill Hurd, Capitol Steps Press Secretary

Happy Independence Day! Vermont Edition has the holiday off and returns at noon and 7 p.m., on Wednesday, July 5. In the meantime, you can relax with special holiday programs on  VPR and VPR Classical.

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