Coming up: Concerts, Annual Meeting, and Workshop!

Join us for our busiest winter yet!

This week: 

sm2014-01-05 11.24.49 copyHands on Harps

Thursday, January 28th, 6:30pm
Union Church Hall, 133 Old Church Rd, Claremont, NH

Only a couple spaces left! Have you always wanted to play the harp, but don’t know where to start? Learn how to navigate a harp, some harp-y techniques, and play a simple tune. No music experience necessary. Harps are provided; fee is by donation (suggested $10): For more info click here.

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_MG_0006Songs of Grief, Hope, and Love, part 1

Sunday, January 31st, 3:00pm
Union Church, 133 Old Church Rd, Claremont, NH
Admission by donation

Celebrate the the expressive power of music at this performance, featuring Angela Biggs, soprano, half of a two part journey for performer and audience. For more information click here

Events in February:
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Hopstop event in Claremont, New Hampshire on Saturday, November 22, 2014. Copyright 2014 by Rob Strong

Claremont HopStop Free Family Show
Copyright 2014 by Rob Strong

Claremont HopStop: Gerry Grimo and the East Bay Jazz Ensemble & the Dartmouth Swing Dancers

Saturday, February 6th, 3:00pm
CSB Community Center, 152 South St, Claremont, NH
FREE admission

Big Band Swing 
Get “In the Mood” and ready to “Jump, Jive and Wail” with local jazz musicians and swing dancers. While the music swings, dancers demonstrate their moves. Audience members get an introduction to the sounds and steps so they can keep swinging after the show.

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WCCMA Annual Meeting

Thursday, February 11th, 6:30pm
Union Church Hall (upstairs), 133 Old Church Rd, Claremont, NH 03743
Light refreshments will be served

Join us to hear about and celebrate a tremendous 2015, and hear about some exciting projects coming up. Friends and community members are invited to join us and meet members of the board.

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Songs of Grief, Hope, and Love, part 2
Saturday, February 13th, 2:00pm
Union Church, 133 Old Church Rd, Claremont, NH
Admission by donation

Celebrate the the expressive power of music at this performance, featuring Angela Biggs, soprano, half of a two part journey for performer and audience. Featuring music by Schubert, Caplet, and more. For more information click here.

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print-floor-mediumThe Great Arc: Dana Lyn, violin; Kyle Sanna, guitar

Friday, February 19th – 7pm
Union Church, 133 Old Church Rd, Claremont, NH
Admission by donation

Hailed as “ground-breaking” by noted folklorist and NEA Award-recipient Mick Moloney and “bursting with creativity” by renowned fiddler Kevin Burke, Dana Lyn and Kyle Sanna connect the dots between their experience as composers and improvisers in New York City’s rich musical community and their deep admiration for traditional Irish music. For more information click here

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Coming up: Music for Syria benefit, and Hands on Harps

We are diving right in to January, and will have lots of activities this winter to keep you busy (no need for cabin fever!) Want more updates? Like and follow us on Facebook!

_MG_8538Music for Syria: A Benefit for Refugees
Tuesday, January 12th, 7:30pm
Union Church, 133 Old Church Rd, Claremont, NH
Admission by donation

Local Musicians and students come together for this benefit concert for Syrian Refugees in the US and in Turkey. Omar Salem from the Karam Foundation will join us to talk about the work they do, and what is happening currently. Music from Mozart to excepts from our friend, Syrian composer, Kinan Azmeh‘s Concerto for Flute and Orchestra (piano reduction by Hugh Keelan). Musicians from Claremont and Brattleboro will come together, including Angela Biggs (voice), Hugh Keelan (piano), Jenna Rae (voice), and Melissa Richmond (flute).

All funds raised at this event will be split between the Karam Foundation (working with refugees in Turkey at the Syrian border), and Catholic Charities resettlement services for Onondaga County NY.

More about the Karam Foundation: karamfoundation.org

More about Catholic Charities resettlement: http://www.ccoc.us/services/refugee-services/refugee-resettlement

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Harper Angela Biggs teaches the beginner harp workshop.

Harper Angela Biggs teaches the beginner harp workshop.

Hands on Harps
Thursday, January 28th, 6:30pm
Union Church Hall, 133 Old Church Rd, Claremont, NH

Have you always wanted to play the harp, but don’t know where to start? Good news: Claremont’s popular Hands on Harps workshop is back! Join the West Claremont Center for Music and the Arts at Union Church hall to learn how to navigate a harp, some harp-y techniques, and play a simple tune.

No music experience necessary. Harps are provided; fee is by donation (suggested $10); class size is limited, and this workshop fills fast. Register by January 26th: contact Angela at 603-558-8174 or angela.biggs@gmail.com. Brought to you by the Opus Arts Project through the West Claremont Center for Music and the Arts.

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Hopstop event in Claremont, New Hampshire on Saturday, November 22, 2014.  Copyright 2014 by Rob Strong

Hopstop event in Claremont, New Hampshire. Copyright 2014 by Rob Strong

Claremont HopStop: Gerry Grimo and the East Bay Jazz Ensemble (with Swing Dancers!)
Saturday, February 6, 3pm
CSB Community Center
Free

The tremendously popular HopStop FREE Family Shows return from winter break!

Big Band Swing: Get “In the Mood” and ready to “Jump, Jive and Wail” with local jazz musicians and swing dancers. While the music swings, dancers demonstrate their moves. Audience members get an introduction to the sounds and steps so they can keep swinging after the show.

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Save the Date:

_MG_0006January 31st, 3pm – Winter recital I: Music for Soprano and Flute
Music performed by Angela Biggs, Soprano, and Melissa Richmond, flute
Admission by donation

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Welcome Elected Officials!

We would like to welcome elected officials from our geographical region to our mailing list. Though most of our programs take place in Claremont, and occasionally Charlestown, about 50% of our participants come from outside Claremont and in particular: Newport, Cornish, Windsor, Charlestown, Plainfield, Grantham, and Springfield to name a few. Several of our programs are funded by state and regional grants, including the NH State Council on the Arts and the New England Foundation for the Arts, making our newsletter a great way for you to become familiar with our programs! If you would rather not receive emails, you may unsubscribe through the link at the bottom of your email.

Season of Thanks: Welcoming the New Year!

Dear Friends,

Happy New Year! This will be the final post in our Season of Thanks Series, we hope that you have enjoyed revisiting all that we have accomplished together. As we begin the new year, we would like to encourage you to make a donation to support these programs, help us start this year knowing we can offer even more in 2016. 2015 was a triumphant year, but there were several junctures where we nearly had to suspend funding for our youth programs. Thanks to major contributions by the Mascoma Savings Bank Foundation, Union Episcopal Church, and the NH Episcopal Diocese we will be able to continue funding our programs for at least 6 months from today. Together those organizations contributed over $10,000 to support education, and the broader WCCMA YAE programs (including Taiko Drumming, the Bach Tree, instrument loaning, and new program development). With that $10,000 we deliver over $50,000 in services to the community, but with your help we can do so much more.

Roger Smith, of New London, right, and Jason Beaudry, of Claremont, second from right, applaud as from left, Melissa Richmond, Mariauna King and Hayley Valdivia, finish a Christmas song at the Revolution Cantina in Claremont, N.H. Wednesday, December 23, 2015. King joined Richmond and the WCCMA flute ensemble for flute Christmas caroling at several locations around downtown Claremont. (Valley News – James M. Patterson)

Just this Sunday the Valley News featured Mariauna, a student in our program. They featured more than a page of photos and an article on Mariauna and her experience with WCCMA’s program. They followed her through a couple weeks of music making, and talked to her about how important music and the YAE program has been for her. You can check out the article here. Mariauna joined our private lesson program this summer, due in part to a $250 donation by Claremont Financial Services, and to all those who contributed to our spring and summer fundraising efforts where we raised over $1,000. Since then just though WCCMA she has been able to have weekly music lessons, perform at our fall student recital and the Firehouse 6 Holiday performance, participate in a flute ensemble, attend a masterclass with Peter Bloom, and carol with other students in downtown Claremont. We would like to help more students like Mariauna, but we can’t do that without your help. Our program from 2015 to present has provided assistance to 6 families, helped facilitate lessons for 6 additional families, and provided supplemental in school group instruction to 15 students. We have requests for support, lesson space, and instructors from at least 10 additional families waiting for funding or supplies (such as our need for a new performance piano) to come through.

It is our hope to achieve all that and more, and we hope that you will consider making a donation in any amount to help.

Thank you for making 2015 such a wonderful year filled with music, art, and inspiration for our students, yourself, and your neighbors. We are looking forward to an amazing new year, with a busy 2016 to come. Our first event for 2016 with be Music for Syria: a benefit for refugees on January 12, 7:30. Here’s to a great year!

WCCMA Executive Director with Gov. Maggie Hassan and Roger Brooks, accepting the Governor’s Arts Award for Distinguished Arts Leadership for 2015. With thanks to the NH State Council on the Arts.