American Folk Song Theme of Concert

BLUE HILL — The Bagaduce Chorale Spring Concert will celebrate the American folk song on Friday, April 29, at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, April 30, at 3 p.m. at the First Congregational Church of Blue Hill.

Music Director Bronwyn Kortge has spent years mining the choral repertoire, gleaning beautiful and surprising arrangements of traditional folk melodies. These gems have been recorded by serious choral art societies such as the Dale Warland and Gregg Smith Singers and the Robert Shaw Chorale. At the Bagaduce Chorale’s spring concert, “Roots and Shoots,” familiar tunes of childhood such as “Goin’ to Boston,” “My Ol’ Kentucky Home,” “Down in the Valley” and “Wayfarin’ Stranger” come to life in sophisticated and challenging arrangements that pay homage to some of America’s most cherished melodies.


Kortge wonders whether America’s youngest generation may not “know folk songs well enough to sing them to their children” and she hopes this concert will help keep these treasured tunes and lyrics alive.

Highlights will be a darkly humorous arrangement of “Oh Clementine,” a stunning a cappella rendition of “Shenandoah,” and, in the spirit of the American folk song, a fantasia on “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” by composer Paul Sullivan.

Kortge says anyone interested in learning more about these arrangements and their place in the chorale repertoire is encouraged to attend her pre-concert talk, which will begin at 7 p.m. on Friday and will be given again at 2:30 p.m. Saturday. Suggested donation for the entire event is $15. For more information, visit

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