A concert with Peter Yarrow (of Peter, Paul & Mary), Dar Williams and other performers is being organized with the intention of bringing the Newtown community together in song, spirit and common purpose.
Musicians Guy Davis and Bethany & Rufus also will join Newtown’s Flagpole Radio Café ensemble in the show, being called the “Newtown Concert for Caring, Healing and Togetherness,” on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 3 p.m. at the Ridgefield Playhouse.
Tickets will be offered to the public on a free, first come, first served, basis beginning Thursday, Feb. 7 through the Ridgefield Playhouse box office at RidgefieldPlayhouse.org. There is a limit of four tickets per person.
Many from Newtown to attend
Personal invitees will include members of the Newtown families and first responders, educators and other community stakeholders as well as a statewide group of Connecticut’s leaders.
The concert and post-concert reception is being produced with support from Operation Respect, an educational nonprofit, and Newtown’s The Flagpole Radio Café show. The reception will include community, government and business leaders from across Connecticut, in an effort to create an ongoing network that can help fulfill the “Sandy Hook Promise.”
Also, during the concert, it will be announced that free trainings in Operation Respect’s “Don’t Laugh At Me” program that focuses on creating safe, compassionate, bully-free school environments will be offered to teachers and other educators in six schools in the Newtown area.
About the performers
Peter Yarrow’s gift for songwriting has produced some of the most moving songs in the Peter, Paul & Mary repertoire, including “Puff, the Magic Dragon,” “Day is Done,” “Light One Candle” and “The Great Mandala.” Currently, his efforts are mainly focused on the nonprofit Operation Respect, which sponsors a program that utilizes music and the arts combined with social/emotional learning curricula for elementary and middle school children, now utilized in more than 20,000 schools worldwide.
The folk-pop songwriter has toured with musicians such as Joan Baez, Shawn Colvin and Patty Griffin. She has been performing since the early 1990s. Williams also is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post’s Green Blog and teaches a course at Wesleyan University on Music Movements in a Capital Democracy.
As a musician, Guy Davis has updated the rural blues tradition for the modern era. He has composed music for PBS-TV shows and television films, winning an Emmy. Davis also is an actor and playwright. He is the son of actors Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee.
Bethany & Rufus:
The cello and voice duo performs roots and folk music. The duo’s newest project is a TV show, “The Spirit of Woodstock,” filmed for PBS with Bethany’s father, Peter Yarrow of Peter, Paul and Mary fame. As a cellist, Rufus has performed with Aretha Franklin and Odetta.
The Flagpole Café
The Flagpole Radio Café was created by Jim Allyn, Martin Blanco and Barbara Gaines in conjunction with the Newtown Cultural Arts Commission in 2008. It is a variety show performed by an ensemble of local professional artists, including Francine and David Wheeler, who lost their son Benjamin in the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14. The show features an eclectic mix of music comprising bluegrass, jazz, light rock, selections from the American song book, and original works by the artists, coupled with radio styled comedy sketches bearing a compelling edge.