Globe West People

Who's the mother now?

Detail from an image by Newton photographer Howard Fineman, who will be among 35 local artists taking part in next weekend’s Newton Open Studios. Detail from an image by Newton photographer Howard Fineman, who will be among 35 local artists taking part in next weekend’s Newton Open Studios.
By People
November 1, 2009

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After her mother fell and could no longer live alone, Sharon Kennedy took on the arduous and heartbreaking task of finding a nursing home for her. Kennedy, a Grammy-nominated storyteller and performance artist from Medford, will recount the experience this week in two local performances of her one-woman show, “Which One of Us Is the Mother Now? Tales from the Nursing Home.’’

Kennedy says her show is for everyone, but especially those who are caring for an elderly parent the best they can. Her performance tells a daughter’s story of love, laughter, lessons learned through trials and tears, and advocacy when, for example, an inpatient psychiatric facility was recommended after her mother began acting out as a result of dementia.

“So many of us baby boomers are going through this experience, yet we all feel a tremendous amount of isolation. We’re all wondering, ‘Am I doing anything right? Is there a manual I missed?’ ’’ said Kennedy, recalling the 16-month period preceding her mother’s death in September 2008. “I hope to give the audience a feeling of comfort and support on this journey that we all have to figure out.’’

Kennedy will perform “Which One of Us Is the Mother Now? Tales from the Nursing Home’’ on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Waltham Public Library, 735 Main St.; and Friday at 7:30 p.m. at First Parish in Needham, 23 Dedham Ave. For more information and other performance dates, visit her website,

HORMONAL IMBALANCE: Since the time their now-college-age children were in nursery school, Kimm DelGizzi says, fellow Framingham resident Dale Gudejko has been roping her into organizing fund-raisers. Now Gudejko is hosting one in her honor.

DelGizzi, who has been battling breast cancer since January, said she was “blown away’’ when Gudejko and another friend, Anne Blackinton of Needham, organized a Four Bitchin’ Babes show in her honor. The ensemble will perform “Hormonal Imbalance! A Mood Swinging Musical Revue’’ next Sunday at 2 p.m. at Framingham High School.

Susan Wornick and Kelley Tuthill of WCVB-TV Channel 5 will be the special guests at the event, with proceeds benefiting Newton-Wellesley Hospital’s Vernon Cancer Center and Dedham-based Hope in Bloom, which plants gardens at the homes of breast-cancer patients.

“I’m honored to have such amazing friends,’’ DelGizzi said. “I can only hope that other women going through treatment have the support of family and friends like I do.’’

Tickets cost $45 for general admission and $55 for preferred seating. For more information, go to

HIGH NOTE: When commissioned four years ago to compose a piece of new classical music, Robert Bradshaw (above) of Gloucester wrote a suite describing a group of regulars in a pub whose routine is upset when they lose one of their members to the girl of his dreams.

The composition, “Right Then, Same Time Tomorrow?’’ will be performed by the Triton Brass Quintet on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Memorial Congregational Church, 26 Concord Road in Sudbury. The concert will serve as the opening event of the church’s annual concert series.

Bradshaw will share his interpretation of the music with the audience prior to the performance, which will also include music by Polish composer Witold Lutoslawski, Renaissance-baroque composer Giles Farnaby, and Cuban saxophonist Paquito D’Rivera. Triton Brass serve as artists-in-residence at the Boston Conservatory, and as chamber music faculty at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute.

“This is the best part of being a composer - getting the music out there in the public and making people happy,’’ said Bradshaw, who composed his first piece of music for his band to play at their eighth-grade dance.

Tickets cost $15 for the general public, $10 for seniors, and $5 for those younger than 18. For more information, call 978-443-3885 or go online to

SWEET SOUNDS: Local residents will be honored at an annual fund-raiser to benefit Gateways: Access to Jewish Education in Newton. “Sweet Sounds: An Afternoon of Jazz & Chocolate’’ will take place next Sunday from 4 to 6 p.m. at Congregation Mishkan Tefila in Chestnut Hill.

The Ruderman Family Foundation will be recognized for its longtime support of Jewish and other organizations, especially those involving special education. The foundation consists of parents Mort and Marcia Ruderman, who live in Brookline, Gloucester, and Florida; Sharon and Rony Shapiro of Brookline; Jay (president of the foundation) and Shira Ruderman of Israel; and Todd and Liz Ruderman of Florida.

Also, Eliana Lipsky of Brookline will receive the organization’s Samuel A. Nemzoff Book Prize. Lipsky, who teaches seventh- and eighth-grade history and Tanakh (Bible), is in her fifth year at the Jewish Community Day School in Watertown. The prize honors a teacher in a participating Gateways Jewish day school who incorporates differentiated instruction in daily interactions with students.

The nonprofit Gateways: Access to Jewish Education provides and supports Jewish special education in day schools, congregational and community preschools and Hebrew schools, and supplemental programs. For more information about the fund-raiser, call 617-630-9010 or go to

GUITARFEST: Next weekend’s Arlington Guitar Fest will feature four guitarists and singer-songwriters: Chris Brenne (above) of Arlington; Chris Florio of Ipswich; Jonathan Keezing of Amherst; and Bertrand Laurence of Cambridge.

The concert, which will showcase traditional and contemporary guitar techniques and styles, will be performed in-the-round on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at the Arlington Center for the Arts, 41 Foster St. in Arlington.

Tickets cost $10. For more information, go to and click on the performing artists link.

OPENING DOORS TO ART: Newton Open Studios will host its second annual juried show and sale from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday at the Newton Cultural Center, 225 Nevada St. in Newtonville.

This year’s juror is Elizabeth Geller, head of the corporate program at Lincoln’s DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum. The 35 artists and craftspeople include Needham resident Maya Ludwig (jewelry) and Newton residents Lisa Sazer (still-life painting), Katherine B. Younger (ceramic), Samuel Dionne (abstract painting), Howard Fineman (photography), Kris Shaffer (painting), and Martha Doolin (still-life painting).

Admission and parking are free. For a full list of participating artists and more information, call 617-872-0228 or go to

People items may be submitted to Cindy Cantrell at

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