VMAA Vermont Music and Arts Association Center

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The Venue

The Vermont Music and Arts Center

Northern Vermont University-Lyndon is located in Vermont’s beautiful Northeast Kingdom on a plateau that affords a spectacular view of Burke Mountain and the Passumpsic Valley. Many other scenic attractions such as Lake Willoughby and Mt. Washington with its world-famous cog railway are within a 90-minute drive. The wooded area surrounding the campus offers trails for leisurely hikes. Public beaches, horseback riding, and a golf course are within easy driving distance.

Location and Directions:

Participants and faculty are housed in private rooms in modern dormitories with kitchens and lounges,  several with pianos, suitable for ensemble playing. Most meals are served cafeteria style in the college’s dining hall. Breakfasts on weekends are in the Rita Bole dorm. The college library and athletic facilities, including tennis courts and an all-weather swimming pool, are open to all participants. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, NVU may need to adjust these offerings.  

How Participants Derive Maximum Benefit From The Program

VMAC (the Vermont Music and Arts Center) is a workshop for serious amateur musicians who would like to play chamber music in an informal and congenial atmosphere – to “take a vacation with music.”

VMAC differs from most workshops in that our faculty usually play with us rather than listening and teaching from the outside. Instead of being assigned groups for three or four pieces of music, we choose our own repertoire and form our own ensembles, which may include one of the coaches at our invitation. Playing with the faculty – being coached from within the group – inspires us, and we learn from their example. Selected “Works of the Week” are suggested for groups that want more formal coaching, but participants may ask for coaching on a different work of their choice. See the Daily Schedule page for a more complete description of the program.

To derive maximum benefit from the program, participants should come prepared to play at least a few works from the standard chamber literature. The staff will gladly provide coaching on prepared works. Elementary instruction is not offered, but experienced musicians who are new to playing chamber music are very welcome.

At home we may not have the right combination of good players for larger works or unusual instrumentation, but VMAC provides winds, singers, strings, pianos, harpsichord, and an extensive music library. It gives us the opportunity to revisit works we have studied in other workshops, and to introduce other musicians to our lesser-known favorites. Most participants play with a great many others and encounter a wealth of new pieces as well as the old favorites.

The Center maintains a library of over 1000 performing editions of chamber music, from baroque to contemporary, for strings, winds, keyboard, and voice.

Participants in VMAC are automatically members of the Vermont Music and Arts Association (VMAA). The members elect a governing board, which administers the Center.

Please email us at vmacinfo@gmail.com with any questions about the program.

Lyndon Campus

Fun Night

Our Faculty

Barbara Jaffe

Music Director - Violin & Viola

Andreia Torain

Violin

Gerall Hieser

Cello

Susan Shaw

Bassoon

Nicole Aldrich

Voice and Large Ensemble

Dana Allaband

Violin (on leave 2022)

Louise Jaffe

Viola

Collette Le Fever

Flute, Early Music

Lee Ann Newland

Horn

David Iskowitz

Piano

Bill Tulp

Art

Elizabeth (Liz) Wright

Violin

Gael Abbasi

Cello

Peter Ferris

Oboe

Richard Shapiro

Clarinet

Elizabeth Acker

Piano