Arts & Leisure


Meg Madden’s mushroom interest has blossomed on Instagram. This Middlebury artist has found a new niche with mushroom photography. Follow @megmaddendesign on Instagram to see what she's finding in the woods.
When the pandemic locked it all down last March, Meg Madden and her almost 10-year-old daughter, Daisy, started going out into Battell Woods behind their house in Middlebury.  “We got to see the entire forest wake up, species by species,” said Madden, an artist and photographer who recently joined the Independent as a part-time advertising administrator. “I was out there every day.” What did Madden find? Mushrooms. “I started taking pictures and putting them on Instagram last summer and all of a sudden started getting a lot of interest,” she said, adding that by December she had about 1,000...

MOIRA SMILEY WILL perform for The Walter Sessions April show on Friday, April 23, at 7 p.m. This monthly online music series is recorded live from the Burnham Hall in Lincoln and broadcast through NEATV. All shows are free, with any donations benefiting the performers. PHOTO / MICHAEL WILSON
Take two: the Walter Sessions are on! This may sound familiar… because it is. The new online music series broadcast from Burnham Hall in Lincoln was slated to kick-off in late March, but had to call a Mulligan after one-too-many technical difficulties. All the glitches are fixed — co-founder and musician Nate Gusakov even tested it out himself with a last-minute performance on April 2.  In collaboration with Josiah Jackson and Shawn Kimball from Northeast Addison Television (NEATV to you and me), Gusakov is excited to finally kick off these monthly sessions.  “Although the series is just in...

GARY MARGOLIS
How Difficult is It?   I wouldn’t have guessed you’d love this form. And take it back into a cell’s darkness. Even the super moon can’t reach you. Unless you dream that light is meant for you. I mean   it’s hard for me to think of so many men, green-suited, shelves for beds, guessing if the moonlight will shine that far back to you and the super darkness.   It’s darker than I ever thought. I mean a moon meant for you. I never guessed I’d be inside, this far back inside a yard’s, a wall’s dark light.   Locked-in isn’t a kind of light. Although I can think of darkness as its own light I can...

THE MIDDLEBURY PERFORMING Arts Series presents the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s complete Brandenburg Concertos starting Friday, April 23 in a free virtual broadcast. Photo Tristan Cook Photo / Tristan Cook.
The Middlebury Performing Arts Series will finish its all-free, all-virtual 20–21 season with a flourish by presenting the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center performing the complete Bach Brandenburg Concertos. This extraordinary HD virtual concert will be broadcast on Friday, April 23 at 7:30 p.m. The concert will remain online for a week for encore views, and is free and open to all. This event is part of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s CMS: FRONT ROW, a program celebrating chamber music at its finest, with broadcasts pulled from CMS’ extensive performance archive and...
(Nancy Paulsen Books) Two children, in their house, and one inquires of the other, “Wonder walk?? which tells the reader, or listener, of this picture book, that a wonder walk is something they do with some frequency. Off they go, and on the walk they wonder about the sky and the earth and the trees, asking each other, or wondering aloud, for instance, “Are roots the plant’s toes?” and “Is fog the river’s blankets?” as they wander around their town, situated, happily, on both a river and the sea. Micha Archer’s incredibly refined and lively collages bring joy to the already joyous tone of the...

ILLUSTRATION BY ADELAIDE Murphy Tyrol.
One spring, following heavy rain, I visited the Saint Michael’s College Natural Area hoping to capture exciting photographs of the rushing Winooski River. Rather than raging floodwaters, however, I found the river’s floodplain was efficiently — and slowly — accommodating the onslaught of rainwater. News reports of floods typically show catastrophic events, with rivers carrying away possessions and leaving tragedy in their wakes. I have witnessed floods moving soil, debris, tree limbs, and even whole trees. An oxbow in the Natural Area marks a dramatic change in river course, likely caused by...
Dear Homeward Bound, I have a weird question for you. My grandma lives alone now since my grandpa died last year. She’s been talking about wanting to get a cat and I don’t want to hurt her feelings but I worry about if it is a good idea since she is really old too and might not live that long. What would happen to the cat? Curious Dear Curious, Thank you for asking this hard question. I’m glad you are thinking about it but please don’t worry yourself too much; you’re a kid and you should enjoy being a kid while you can! One thing you could do is talk to a grown-up who is close to your grandma...

LEOPOLD AND RUDOLF Blaschka, Bouquet for Mrs & Miss Ware, 1887. Ware Collection of Glass Models of Plants, Harvard Museum of Natural History
April showers bring May flowers! Join Professor Ellery Foutch on Thursday, April 29, at 7 p.m., for “Everlasting Flowers: Botanical Models in New England Collections,” a springtime talk presented by the Henry Sheldon Museum about the study of botany in New England at the turn of the 20th century. In this illustrated lecture, Foutch will discuss botanical models including Harvard’s famed “Glass Flowers” and a more local connection: former Middlebury College President Ezra Brainerd’s herbarium, a cabinet of pressed plants collected on walks through Addison County — tools that informed his...

SHIRLEY REID OF of North Ferrisburgh, is one of the contributing artists for the “Find Your Wings” community-led public art installation project in downtown Middlebury. Projects will be on view by June. Photo / Elisabeth Waller Photography
Lacewing Productions is proud to announce three artists that will have their work installed in town as part of the community-led public art installation project called Find Your Wings. Shirley Reid, Joe Schine and Matt Heywood will be contributing to the project. This is the first of a three-part series that will highlight each artist and their submission to Find Your Wings, which will be installed by June. Artwork submitted in response to last October’s call to artist for “wings” was reviewed by over 20 community members who made up the peer art review panel known as the Find Your Wing...

ZENO MOUNTAIN FARM'S “Best Summer Ever” was filmed in Lincoln, Bristol and Mount Abraham Union High School. Here is a scene from the musical that closed down Main Street in Bristol for a whole night.
Springtime feels good, and it’s about to feel even better. Zeno Mountain Farm (a foundation in Lincoln that champions lifelong friendship and opportunity for people with disabilities and other marginalized communities) is prepping to release its first feature length movie (shot in Lincoln and Bristol) to the public in late April. “Best Summer Ever” — a fresh and exhilarating take on the beloved teen musical genre — premiered last month at the annual South by Southwest festival to rave reviews. The Hollywood Reporter called it “irresistibly likable.” USA Today ranked the musical number six in...

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