NEWBURY — Heidi Fram, head of the Byfield Community Arts Center, is excited about its musical offerings over the next few months.
“Our fall lineup is pretty spectacular,” she said.
The nonprofit arts center, founded in 2006, is run out of space at 7 Central St. that was built in 1898 for use as a town hall. Along with theater and visual arts offerings, the center also holds live music sessions throughout the year called Cat in the Cradle, and — new this past summer — a monthly open mic series.
Fram admits to being “continually impressed with the talent that our music committee books for the Cat in the Cradle.”
Last month, for example, Wild Maple — a local, lively acoustic band — and Oliver the Crow from Nashville performed the same night.
“It was an amazing show,” Fram recalled.
On Saturday, Newburyport singer-songwriter Lynne Taylor filled the hall for the release of her third CD.
Doors for Cat in the Cradle performances this fall open at 7 p.m. and the shows start at 7:30 p.m. Advance tickets available at byfieldcac.org. Beer, wine, tea, coffee and an assortment of concession snacks are available for purchase.
Also coming this fall, the self-described "ocean folk" duo Gentle Temper and a female-led bluegrass group, The Hot Flashes, appear on Oct. 19.
London-born singer and songwriter Rupert Wates and the original sounds of the Tim Foley Group are paired Nov. 9, while the harmonies of identical twin sisters Chris and Meredith Thompson can be heard along with the folk, country and blues sounds of the Lenny Solomon Band on Dec. 7.
Starting in July, the center began offering an open mic series hosted by Art Grossman. The evenings feature 10 to 12 musicians performing 10-minute sets.
“It's a fun, laid-back event that gives everyone a chance to perform in a great space,” Fram said, “turns out there is a lot of talent around. Some of these musicians are hoping to be part of the Cat and Cradle and some are just building their confidence level without the pressure of an entire show.” Open mic will be offered next Oct. 18 and Nov. 18
Volunteers are always welcome and needed at the arts center, Fram stressed.
“As our programs continue to grow, there are more things to do and more days that they need to be done,” she said. “There are so many opportunities in our region and we are very happy that many people appreciate what we are trying to do at the BCAC.”