BLUE HILL — Celebrate Independence Day at the 28th annual Blue Hill Pops Concert. Kick off the 2018 summer season with this rousing program featuring a lineup of topnotch Maine performers. Sponsored by the Bagaduce Music Lending Library, the 2018 Blue Hill Pops Concert will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 3, at George Stevens Academy gymnasium on Union Street.
A summer season tradition in Down East Maine since 1990, this year’s festival of “Sounds Around Blue Hill” will feature Grammy Award winning Maine composer and pianist Paul Sullivan with renowned jazz and gospel singer Theresa Thomason. Other 2018 Blue Hill Pops performers will include the high energy duo of Acadian fiddler Gus La Casse and guitarist Peter Lindquist, and the Bagaduce Pops Singers, under the direction of Bronwyn Kortge, singing a medley of Broadway showstoppers by Leonard Bernstein in honor of his 100th birthday.
Paul Sullivan has enjoyed a distinguished career as a composer and pianist. As a soloist and as a member of the Paul Winter Consort, he has toured most of the U.S. and Europe, as well as Croatia, Israel and Japan. As a jazz pianist, Sullivan has played with a wide variety of jazz masters, from Benny Goodman to Tommy Flanagan. His 13 CDs have sold over 300 thousand copies and have won 3 Indie Awards. In 2006 Sullivan received a Grammy Award for his work on the Paul Winter Consort CD, Silver Solstice. Theresa Thomason’s singing is rooted in gospel, but stretches beyond to include jazz and pop. She has sung in the most hallowed halls of Europe, including a performance at the Vatican in 2005. She has also performed on Broadway in the musical Hot Feet, which was choreographed and directed by Maurice Hines.
Described as a folk fiddler with both speed and savage energy, Gus La Casse’s repertoire reflects his dedication to the Cape Breton and Acadian fiddle traditions. La Casse has been described as “a natural-born fiddle player…whose energy would power a small city” by Peter Sutherland, the artistic director of Young Tradition Vermont. An incoming senior at Mount Desert Island High School, the young fiddling phenomenon traveled to Ireland to perform in 2016 and has played multiple times at the legendary Club Passim in Cambridge, MA. Peter Lindquist is a singer, songwriter and instrumentalist who has toured extensively in the U.S. and Canada and has also performed in England, Spain and France. After many years away, Lindquist returned home to Mount Desert Island, where he continues to perform and record.
The Bagaduce Pops Singers have performed at all 28 Blue Hill Pops concerts. This year, under the direction of Bronwyn Kortge, the Singers will perform a medley of Broadway show stoppers by Leonard Bernstein in honor of his 100th birthday, including songs from West Side Story, On the Town, Wonderful Town and Candide. The Pops Singers will be accompanied by Karen Dickes on piano and Lynette Woods on drums.
This year’s Blue Hill Pops attendees are invited to attend a pre-concert dinner from 5-6:45 pm at the old Ice House Barn, located directly behind George Stevens Academy. Tickets for the pre-concert party are $40 each and will include a barbeque dinner, all beverages and lively entertainment by the Atlantic Clarion Steel Band. Because of space limitations, tickets for this pre-concert party are limited.
As in past years, Blue Hill Pops will conclude with a patriotic finale featuring an audience sing-along. Table seats, reserved chairs and bleacher seats are available in a range of prices beginning at $10. For tickets, please call the Blue Hill Pops Manager Cheri Robbins at 374-5454 or stop by the Bagaduce Music Lending Library at 49 South Street in Blue Hill. Corporate Sponsors for the 2018 Blue Hill Pops are Bar Harbor Bank & Trust, Stanley Subaru and Tradewinds Marketplace.