Emily Crosby

Oct 312017

Vermont Pride Theater at Chandler announces auditions for a January staged reading of Paul Lucas’ Trans Scripts Part I: The Women. Proceeds from this 7th annual pride benefit will go to GLAD’s transgender rights project across New England.


— When: Saturday January 27, 7:30 PM

— Where: Chandler Center for the Arts

— Content: Interwoven, themed monologues from Paul Lucas’ 4-year interview project with trans women world-wide

— Presentation: One act, followed by a talkback with the playwright attending


— Friday, December 8th, Unitarian Church, Montpelier

— Saturday, December 9th, Vermont Pride Center, Burlington

— Sunday, December 10th, Bethany UCC Church, Randolph

Auditions are open, though preference will be given to transgender actors to support the authenticity of the play.

Contact Director Cher Laston or Producer Sharon Rives to arrange an audition time and to obtain sides and the playwright’s character descriptions, in order to prepare for auditioning.

Oct 112017


The Chandler Center for the Arts invites craft artists, fine artists, and producers of specialty food items to submit their work for consideration for inclusion in its annual Holiday Artisans Market. The juried show, offering a beautiful and eclectic selection of fine art, crafts, and local products, will be celebrating its 16th year.

The 2017 Chandler Artisans Market will run from Friday, November 17, through Sunday, December 24. The Market will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 12 noon until 6 pm and on Christmas Eve, December 24, from noon until 3 pm. It will also be open during performances at Chandler throughout the holiday season.

The 16th annual Chandler Holiday Artisans Market will occupy Chandler’s Main Gallery, an elegant space perfect for showcasing handmade work. The Market strives to present a range of work that exemplifies the talent and creativity of area artisans and local food producers. It has earned a region-wide reputation as a rewarding place to shop for holiday gifts. Chandler looks forward to presenting work by both perennial favorites and new exhibitors, offering a gratifying shopping experience to area residents and visitors alike. The Holiday Artisans Market offers shoppers the opportunity to show support for local, independent businesses, while also helping to raise funds for future programming and exhibits at Chandler.

Artisans, craftspeople, and regional food purveyors interested in submitting work for consideration by the Chandler Gallery Committee should complete the online application. The deadline for submissions is Monday, October 23 at 5 pm. Artisans whose work is accepted for the Market will be notified no later than Friday, October 27. Dropoff dates for work will be Sunday, November 12, and Monday, November 13. There is a $20 submission fee for those artisans whose work is accepted for the Market, payable at the time work is dropped off at Chandler.

All applicants must submit a completed form to be considered. First-time applicants are required to submit images of work – please see the application for more details. Product samples may also be dropped off in person at Chandler. Previous exhibitors are only required to complete an application, provided that submitted work is the same.

If you have any questions or need more information, please contact Artisans Market Coordinator Anne Barrett at (802) 355-5557 or chandlermarket@gmail.com.

Jul 282017

An extraordinary array of acclaimed artists will grace the main stage at the Chandler Music Hall in Randolph during the coming months. It’s all part of the Chandler Center for the Arts’ mission to “strengthen and energize our community by offering opportunities for people to come together in pursuit and celebration of the arts.”

The 2017-18 Chandler MainStage Series kicks off with a special evening of stellar a cappella music featuring legendary vocal masters The Persuasions, who’ve carried the art form of unaccompanied vocal music forward, sometimes single-handedly, for well over 50 years. This Autumn A Cappella performance is set for Saturday, September 30. Joining The Persuasions on the Chandler stage will be two opening acts: Vermont’s own a cappella jazz octet, Maple Jam, and one of the country’s most respected collegiate vocal ensembles, the Dartmouth Aires.

This trio of scintillating vocal groups ushers in a series of standout folk, country, blues, gospel, jazz, Celtic, and pop performances throughout the Chandler season. Additional performances of note include folk and Americana icon David Bromberg and his hot quintet (October 5, 2017); propulsive Latin jazz with internationally acclaimed jazz trumpeter Ray Vega (November 3); bluegrass favorites the Gibson Brothers with openers the VT Bluegrass Pioneers (November 5); the first New England visit in nearly two decades by the glorious Howard University Gospel Choir (November 11; The Turning of the Year, a musical celebration of the holidays with Irish accordionist John Whelan, Scottish-American fiddler Katie McNally, and American roots band Low Lily (December 8); folk and singer-songwriter legend Tom Rush (February 23, 2018); New World Festival favorites De Temps Antan (April 6); and culminating with an enchanted evening with three critically acclaimed singer-songwriters, touring as The Texas Troubadours: Chandler favorite Ruthie Foster, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, and Carrie Rodriguez (April 13).

Classical music – long a Chandler tradition – will again have a strong presence on the main stage. Cellist Edward Arron and pianist Jeewon Park perform Beethoven’s Sonatas for Cello & Piano (October 7, 2017). The eclectic Sixth Floor Trio, including Teddy Abrams (clarinet, piano); Harrison Hollingsworth (bassoon, violin); and Johnny Tessier (clarinet) serves up a heady mix of music that interweaves classical sounds with hints of bluegrass, klezmer, jazz, and alt-rock (January 12, 2018). Chandler’s classical bill wraps up with Camerata New England, performing a trio of wondrous works, including piano quintets by Shostakovich and Dvorak (April 20).

Chandler’s Daytime Performance Series for regional school students and home schoolers features the Classic Repertory Company’s theatrical production of Harper Lee’s cherished coming-of-age story, To Kill a Mockingbird (October 5, 2017); a concert for kids with beloved Vermont folksinger and songwriter Jon Gailmor (October 27); ArtsPower’s lively staging of Judy Blume’s popular novel for grade schoolers, Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great (January 26); and a compelling dance theater work by choreographer and storyteller Lida Winfield – In Search of Air: Growing Up Dyslexic (March 23).

Contemporary dance glides across Chandler’s main stage for the first time in many years next spring. In its first-ever commission of an artistic work, Chandler will present the world premiere of a new work by Vermont dancer and theater artist Tracy Penfield, who is collaborating with California-based dancemaker Tamara Hurwitz Pullman on a powerful dance theater work dubbed The Passing Project (April 28). Passing will investigate the theme of dying in an uplifting, illuminating, multidisciplinary collage of seven dancers, four musicians, a soundscape, and a sculptural set. Far from being macabre or morbid, Passing is a moving examination of what is passed on to us, what we leave behind, and how life continues.

The 2017-18 season also includes the return of Chandler’s annual, ever-popular series of performances specially selected for families. This season’s offerings include the return of the No Strings Marionettes (November 25, 2017); the Mini Mud Youth Variety Show (March 24, 2018); and The Next Generation (May 18). The Chandler Family Series will also feature the debut Chandler performance by Jeh Kulu Dance & Drum Theater (March 11), bringing its high-spirited celebration of West African music and dance to central Vermont.

Join your friends and neighbors at Chandler for world-class music, award-winning festivals, innovative theater, and outstanding folkloric and contemporary dance this season. Tickets go on sale August 1st. For more information and tickets to all events, visit chandler-arts.org or call the Chandler Box Office, weekdays between 12 and 4 pm, at (802) 728-6464. Chandler Music Hall is fully accessible and equipped for the hearing impaired.

Jun 082017

Summer is finally in sight! But before you take off on vacation, we hope you’ll take a look at our 2017-2018 season of Daytime Performances, below, to start planning for next year. We encourage you to share this info with teachers, administrators, and families that might be interested in these opportunities.

Below you will find details about our four DPS shows this year, a funding opportunity from the Vermont Arts Council, and our cancellation policy. Reservations can be made at any time by contacting outreach@chandler-arts.org or 802-728-6464.

Enjoy your summer!

New Repertory Theatre presents To Kill a Mockingbird

Thursday, October 5,Ÿ 10 am

All seats $7

For grades 6-12

90 minutes

Harper Lee’s coming of age story set against the backdrop of 1930s’ Alabama explores themes of racial inequality, class, gender, and family. Classic Repertory Company – the New Repertory Theatre’s flagship educational outreach program – delves into this timeless story to ask a question seemingly torn from today’s headlines: What has kept this book in American classrooms for more than 50 years? The 90-minute performance is accompanied by a comprehensive study guide; a pre-show introduction; and a post-show discussion with the cast.

Jon Gailmor presents Be Who You Are: A Concert for Kids

Friday, October 27, 10 am

All seats $7

For grades K-6

1 hour

Celebrated singer-songwriter and folk musician Jon Gailmor is a Vermont and national treasure. In this special, participatory concert for younger children, Jon offers up songs both humorous and thought-provoking, celebrating our shared humanity while encouraging self-expression and the freedom to be who you are. Raucous laughter and spirited sing-alongs are at the heart of any Jon Gailmor performance for children. And who knows – your students may find themselves performing on stage with Jon at some point during the show!

ArtsPower presents Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great

Friday, January 26, 10 am

All seats $7

For grades 2-6

1 hour

Being a 10-year-old kid is kind of a pain. Having an older sister is really a pain. Being afraid of everything is . . . well, just plain painful!  Sheila Tubman – otherwise known as Sheila the Great – comes of age in ArtsPower’s lively and poignant musical, based on Judy Blume’s popular novel about discovering the person within.

Curriculum Connections:  Family Relationships, Language/Communication Skills, Literature-Based, Values-Based.

Lida Winfield presents In Search of Air: Growing Up Dyslexic

Friday, March 23, 10 am

All seats $7

For grades 9-12

1 hour

In this dance and theater performance based on her experience growing up with a learning disability, Vermont dancer, choreographer, and spoken word artist Lida Winfield shares the gifts and heartache that accompanied her struggle to learn to read – an accomplishment that did not occur until her early twenties. This show is a mixture of funny, sad, and ironic moments strung together in a creative, captivating format. Lida’s compelling stage presence expresses her life so clearly that it brings adolescents and adults alike closer to our own inner beings.


The Vermont Arts Council’s Cultural Routes program offers $200 grants to Vermont schools to help underwrite the cost of transportation to arts and cultural events; any remaining funds can be used to subsidize associated field trip expenses. FY2018 applications open August 14. We recommend applying early, as funding is limited.


Please note Chandler’s cancellation policy for school performances:

The show must go on!  Performances will only be canceled and refunds issued if the artist is unable to reach the theater.  Schools will be notified by phone as soon as possible if a performance is cancelled. We do not issue refunds for school snow days or delays. If school is canceled in your district, we will make an effort to transfer your reservations to another grade-appropriate performance, if space is available. Please note that this might not be possible due to our performance schedule.

Mar 282017


WHAT: auditions for the Vermont premiere of Deborah Salem Smith’s drama Love Alone and for the Northeast premiere of DC Cathro’s comedy Family Holiday

Love Alone: When a patient dies during a routine medical procedure, the aftermath can be agonizing, both for loved ones and for the medical team involved. This intelligent play explores how such a tragedy affects the long-time same-sex partner and the biological daughter of the deceased, as well as the young doctor who is experiencing her first “bad outcome”.

Family Holiday: RJ goes home for the holidays, hoping to have a relaxing time with his family and best friend. He arrives to find his sister newly single, his Nana on a health kick, his mother dashing in and out, and his father nervous about all of the strange behavior. Secrets are revealed and RJ is stuck in the middle of this fast-paced holiday farce for modern times.

AUDITIONS: Saturday April 1, 10 AM – 1 PM, Chandler Music Hall, Randolph

ROLES TO BE CAST in Love Alone

Helen Warren, 51, a realtor

Clementine, late teens/early 20s, Helen’s daughter, lead singer of a band (must be a seasoned musician, able to sing and play an instrument)

Dr. Becca Neal, 33, an anesthesiologist

J.P. Whiteman, 35, Becca’s husband

decedent services rep, nurse, lawyer, all to be played by one actress

ROLES TO BE CAST in Family Holiday

RJ (Ronald Junior), late 20s-early 30s, a veterinarian

Junior (Judith Junior), late-20s-mid 30s, RJ’s sister

Judith, mom, Ron’s wife, 50s, a tad neurotic

Ron, dad, Judith’s husband, 50s, no nonsense

Nana, Ron’s mother, 70s, feisty

Andy, RJ’s oldest friend, late 20s-early 30s, laid back

REHEARSAL SCHEDULE: To be set jointly by the director and the actors

PERFORMANCES: Twice during the weekends of July 21-30, the seventh annual Vermont Pride Theater Summer Festival. The festival presents onstage the issues and concerns of LGBTQ+ Vermonters in a context that encourages audience interaction with performers, via post-performance talkbacks and receptions. Actors will be expected to participate in these activities, and in advance of performances to be available for cast photos and an interview with area press.

During the festival, the LGBTQ+ Ten-Fest Out of the Closet will also be presented.

REMUNERATION: $150 stipend

COME TO THE AUDITION WITH a prepared monologue less than 2 minutes in length, plus your headshot and your theatrical resume

To audition for Love Alone, contact Margo Whitcomb at margonomy@gmail.com

To audition for Family Holiday, contact Nancy Manney at gardngal@hotmail.com

If you wish to audition for both, please let Margo or Nancy know when you contact her.

Feb 142017

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Feb 132017

Job Opening: Executive Director

Chandler Center for the Arts, Randolph Vermont


Chandler Description: Chandler Music Hall is an arts cultural facility located in the town of Randolph, in central Vermont. Built in 1907, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and considered one of the finest small concert halls in America, the building recently went through a $4 million dollar renovation bringing it up to modern standards. It includes a 575 seat acoustically impressive auditorium, an art gallery, and a multipurpose room which currently hosts yoga and dance classes, a film series, and smaller performances as well as being available for rental for private and non-profit events. Chandler Center for the Arts, our non-profit presenting organization, offers a full season of performances, festivals, gallery exhibits, films, community productions and educational activities.

We seek an executive director who will:

  • Provide direction and leadership for the Chandler mission*, strategy, goals and objectives
  • Position Chandler as an integral and essential element in the Central Vermont region
  • Embody Chandler values of inclusion, professionalism, diversity, collaboration, creativity and ethics
  • Provide effective professional management of Chandler programs, staff, volunteers and finances
  • Provide leadership in fundraising and grant writing to support goals of organization
  • Work closely and collaboratively with the board of directors
  • Demonstrate excellent communication skills, both written and oral, with a warm interpersonal style
  • Develop a vibrant and popular program series, negotiating effectively with performers and their agents
  • Be a champion for Chandler and the entire community


Job details: This is a full time job but some flexibility is possible, with the option of occasionally working from home. Some weekend and evening work during performances is required, with compensatory time off during the regular work week. We offer 3 weeks paid vacation per year as well as standard holidays.

For more information about Chandler and our programs, visit our web site www.chandler-arts.org.

Please respond by sending resume, with a cover letter outlining why you are interested in working at Chandler and why you are a good fit for us, to Janet Watton, president@chandler-arts.org or 71-73 Main St Randolph VT 05060


*Chandler Mission: Chandler Center for the Arts inspires and cultivates artistic expression and education in the performing and visual arts for people of all ages, deepens the cultural and artistic growth of youth, and strengthens and energizes our community by offering opportunities for people to come together in pursuit and celebration of the arts.


Feb 072017


Contact: Chandler executive director, 802-728-9878, director@chandler-arts.org

Chandler Center for the Arts, 71-73 Main Street, Randolph VT


Chandler Center for the Arts in Randolph (VT) is pleased to announce its third issues playwriting contest. With the renewed support of the Walter Cerf Fund of the Vermont Community Foundation, Chandler will again be using the contest to promote excellent writing for the stage, giving particular focus to plays that address social issues.

“Social issue” plays are, for the purposes of this contest, plays that frame and delve into pressing topics important to Vermont communities, topics which either affect Vermonters today or have affected Vermonters in the past. Writers from Vermont, or those with a strong Vermont connection, are invited to submit to Chandler original plays on social issues with a running time of at least 45 minutes. Submissions may be made by electronic or snail mail, and must either be received electronically by midnight on May 31st or be mailed with a postmark no later than May 31st.

Accompanying each submission must be a $20 entry fee, a description of the play’s record of past public presentation if applicable, and a statement confirming that the play has not yet been produced professionally. For an additional fee of $15, a second script may be submitted by the same playwright. Entry fees, sponsorship support, and ticket sales make it possible for Chandler to produce the contest. If fewer than ten scripts are submitted by May 31st, the contest will be canceled and the fees will be returned.

Scripts will be evaluated by judges with theater experience, who will select up to five finalists based on the quality of the writing (language, characterization, dramatic structure) and the clarity with which the focal issue is presented. Their selection will be final.

Finalists will be notified by August 31st, and each will receive a $100 cash prize. Each finalist play will be given a staged-reading production in Chandler’s Upper Gallery between September 2017 and May 2018.

The staged readings will be scheduled and promoted by Chandler as an Issues Play Series, readings being performed by non-Equity actors guided by experienced directors. After the readings, panelists with expertise in the issue(s) raised will participate in post-performance talkbacks moderated by the directors. The play’s authors will be encouraged to attend, but their costs to do so will not be covered by the contest.




The purpose of this third contest is again to promote excellent writing, by Vermont writers, for the Vermont stage. Its particular focus is “social issue” plays: plays that frame and delve into pressing topics important to Vermont communities, either those issues relevant today or those that have affected Vermonters in the past.


  • Any play entered into the contest must be original, and must not have been professionally produced before the end date of the contest (May 31, 2017). Plays that have received a workshop performance or a staged reading are eligible; plays that have been performed by Equity actors for a paying audience are not.
  • Each play entered must deal with a social issue:  for example, the rights of farm workers working illegally in the U.S. or Vermont’s early stand against slavery. The play may examine the issue in terms of its public ramifications (e.g., court cases, legislation, media coverage) or its private impact (e.g., personal and domestic relationships.) Eligibility of a particular topic should be confirmed with the contact below before time is devoted to writing a play on that topic for submission to the contest.
  • Plays for children, as well as for adults, are eligible.
  • Single-character plays are eligible, but monologues are not.
  • One-act plays are eligible, but any script submitted must have a running time of at least 45 minutes.
  • Scripts may be no longer than 120 pages, in 12-point font and with margins of 1 inch on each side of the page.
  • Authors may submit two plays, in which case two registration forms are required but only one application form is needed.


Submission process

  • Entries by electronic mail are preferred. Each entry must consist of a PDF of the script, accompanied by the author’s application form and the play’s registration form. The pages must be numbered, and the script must be fronted by a cover page containing only the title, not the author’s name. This submission must be sent to director@chandler-arts.org no later than midnight on May 31st. Incomplete submissions will not be accepted, nor will post-submission corrections.
  • Entries by regular mail will also be accepted. Each entry must consist of three copies of the script, accompanied by the author’s application form and the play’s registration form. The pages must be numbered, and the script must be fronted by a cover page containing only the title, not the author’s name. This submission must be sent to Chandler, ATTN: CONTEST, 71-73 Main Street, Randolph, VT 05060, postmarked not later than 5 PM on May 31st. Incomplete submissions will not be accepted, nor will post-submission corrections.
  • For a submission by regular mail, the entry fee of $20 for a single play or $35 for two plays should be included, via a check made out to Chandler. For an electronic submission, a check for the fee(s) should be sent to Chandler via regular mail.
  • Receipt of the script(s) and the fee(s) will be confirmed within two weeks.
  • If a playwright wishes the return of materials submitted by regular mail, he/she should include in his/her submission a stamped, self-addressed return envelope.


Limitations:  If less than 10 scripts are submitted by May 31st, the contest will be canceled and entry fees will be returned.


Judging criteria

  • Judges will evaluate scripts on the basis of the quality of the writing – specifically, the language, characterization, and dramatic structure — (65%) and of the clarity with which the focal issue is presented (35%). At the end of their review, the judges will also rate the overall impact of the play. If two scripts are tied on the basis of the numerical criteria, the overall-impact rating will be used to break the tie.
  • The judges will choose up to five finalist plays, and each play chosen will be awarded a $100 cash prize plus a staged reading.
  • Since the judges’ review of the scripts will be blind and authors may submit two scripts, it is possible that two finalist scripts may be written by a single author. Even should this be the case, the decisions of the judges shall be final.


Notification to the finalists:

  • Each finalist will be notified by August 31st. At that time he/she will be asked to confirm in writing the certifications made at entry: that the script submitted is his/her original work and has not been professionally produced, and that he/she does have a Vermont connection.
  • If such certifications are made, the cash prize will be sent to the winning playwright and planning will begin for the staged reading of the play during Chandler’s 2017-18 season.


Staged readings of the finalist plays

  • For each finalist play, Chandler will choose a director with experience suited to the particular character of the script; this choice will be final. The director will cast the play with experienced non-Equity actors from throughout the region; his/her casting will be final.
  • Between September 2017 and May 2018, the reading will be scheduled for performance in Chandler’s Upper Gallery based on both the availability of the director and the non-contest programming scheduled for that space.
  • After each reading, a talkback panel moderated by the director may include panelists selected for their connection to the current social issue with which the play is concerned. Audience comments about the script will be transcribed and shared with the finalist author if the author is not present.
  • Finalist authors will be encouraged to attend these readings and talkbacks, but the contest cannot cover any expenses they might incur to do so.

For clarifications about anything in the above material, or questions about topics not covered, please contact director@chandler-arts.org

Aug 242014

Jim Lowe’s Aug 24, 2014 editorial, Lowe Down: Why can’t we be more like Randolph talks about Chandler’s success coming from community.

Times Argus Article Applauds Chandler’s Sense of Community

At the opening concert of Randolph’s Central Vermont Chamber Music Festival, the usual attendance of 150 to 200 people had diminished to about 100. Anywhere else, that would be the mark of doom.

But not in this community — Randolph wants its chamber music and it will have it.

In a state awash with high – quality arts, one tiny community stands as a beacon. Randolph, with a population nearing just 5,000 with no significant suburbs to augment it, has an extravagance of arts activities — even when not considered on a per – capita basis.

Attendance w on’t be a problem next weekend when more than 1,500 are expected to attend Randolph’s New World Festival on Sunday. The Celtic and Quebecois traditional music festival and the chamber music festival are both celebrating their 22nd year in Randolph.

They have another thing in common — Chandler Music Hall.

The New World Festival is under the auspices of the Chandler Center for the Arts, the parent organization of the music hall. And while the chamber music festival has its own board, it is hosted by the Chandler and receives its support from largely the same people.

For, in Randolph, when it comes to the arts, the attitude is, “We’re all in this together.”

That’s because Chandler is all – inclusive. Not only did “Fiddler on the Roof,” its annual large – scale summer musical, draw its 100 – plus, high school – age cast and technicians from throughout the region, its annual Vermont Pride Summer Theater Festival presented three different productions celebrating the state’s gay and lesbian communities.

Chandler is also one of the state’s biggest supporters of classical music. Not only was it one of the first concert halls to install its own Steinway 9 – foot concert grand piano, it maintains a high performance level, attracting the likes of violinist Midori and pianist Simone Dinnerstein, with whom the Chandler has forged a special relationship.

More unusually, Janet Watton, Chandler’s president, has created the annual “Next Generation,” inspired by National Pubic Radio’s “From the Top.” Each year, Vermont high school classical musicians — selected by audition — strut their stuff before an appreciative audience.

It’s not just classical music. The coming season not only promises traditional stars like fiddlers Natalie MacMaster and husband Donnell Leahy, among othe rs, it offers intimate concerts in its upper gallery.

Visual arts are also important at the Chandler. It hosts exhibits by a variety of artists, largely Vermont and Vermont – based, in a main gallery and a downstairs gallery.

Chandler’s success comes from its community — Randolph.

Chandler Music Hall itself was a donation of summer resident Albert P. Chandler. After about 25 years as an arts hub, it lay fallow until the 1980s, when Martha Ostland and the Friends of Chandler Music Hall initiated substantial new activity.

Today, Chandler Music Hall is one of the most attractive and acoustically reverberant theaters in Vermont. Thanks to the recent $3.7 million renovation — paid in full by the community — the building has all the latest professio nal amenities.

Chandler is currently mourning the death last December of its first professional executive director, Laura Morris, and now the departure of Becky McMeekin, its longtime second one. Kurt Thoma, her lucky successor, takes over the reins in September.

“It was precisely the type of town we were looking for,” Thoma told M.D. Drysdale of the Herald of Randolph.

He became even more excited when, traveling here and there around town, he found that “everybody I talked to had some association with Chandler.”