December 21, 2010

Amherst Club Luncheon Notes

December 21, 2010

President Vivienne Carey opened today’s meeting with her welcoming induction of two new members: Amanda Roberts and Lois Kackley.   Marian Mepham introduced members to her daughter-in-law, Amanda, beginning with Amanda’s love of dance and theater, through several career paths, and locating her currently with a practice in Amherst in behavioral medicine and health psychology.  Lois Barber introduced members to Lois Kackley, a former print journalist whose discovery and admiration of Emily Dickinson’s poetry led to a life-changing focus on Dickinson’s oeuvre and a consequent move to Amherst, where her involvement in Dickinson continues and where she leads two groups on poetry.

Guests:  Sandy Riggs’ guests were Polly and Dan Patterson.  Phyllis Lehrer brought Joan Logan.              Lois Barber’s guest was Doug Wolf.


Rachel Mustin welcomed Vivienne back from her several weeks’ absence due to illness.

Phyllis Lehrer welcomed Lorraine back, as well, from an absence due to illness.

Jim Scott pitched Love Notes tickets as wonderful, one-size-fits-all Christmas gifts.

Claude Tellier explained that a local bank’s name change to People’s United Bank, which declined to place an ad in the Love Notes 2011 program, had led to an error in thinking that PeoplesBank, our long-time major sponsor, would not be donating to Love Notes 2011.  It is now sorted out that the newly named People’s United Bank will not be a sponsor and that PeoplesBank has already signed on to purchase its usual, full-page ad in the upcoming Love Notes program.  

Iso Stein volunteered to pick up the weekly wine from the Spirit Haus in Claude’s absence in January.

Sensitivity to today’s performers led to the decision that the raffle would not be collected today.

The Amherst Club will not meet for lunch on the next two Tuesdays.  We will reconvene on Tuesday, January 11th.

Michael Greenebaum introduced the spectacular Amherst Regional High School Chorale, led by conductor Anita Cooper, who is herself an esteemed soloist.

Ms. Cooper described the two dozen singers poised before us as students in grades 10 to 12, each of whom auditioned as one of four voices—sopranos, altos, tenors, and bass singers—to earn a place in this a capella Chorale.  This group is, she stated, “the crème-de-la-crème” of ARHS choruses.  Ms. Cooper explained that their songs often have many more than four voices.  They frequently sing in so many voices that often one voice carries a whole part.

Ms. Cooper led her teenagers in ten songs, ranging from a 1700s song incorrectly but often attributed to Mozart, an Israeli folksong, the shanty song “Heave Away,” and the Christmas “Carole of the Bells.”  In stunning voice, the singers performed Quincy Jones’ “Soul Bossa Nova,” with its incredibly high soprano notes and “yips” from the altos; “Brown-eyed Girl” by Van Morrison, with engaging solos by three tenors; and the show-stopping Overture from the “Barber of Seville,” described by students and conductor as “dang hard”!  When the group finished with “Soon I Will Be Done with the Troubles of the World,” Club members all around this scribe were calling out, “can we book them right now for next year?!”

Your scribe, Jacquie Price