Music At The Atwood Series Begins With Passero Trio

by Jennifer Sexton-Riley
Dianne Spoto will perform with The Passero Trio at the opening performance of the Music at the Atwood Concert Series. Dianne Spoto will perform with The Passero Trio at the opening performance of the Music at the Atwood Concert Series.

The Atwood Museum’s 2024 season of the Music at the Atwood Concert Series starts Thursday, June 6 at 6:30 p.m. with a performance by the Passero Trio. The Passera Trio features flutist Dianne Spoto, violist Alexander Vavilov and Anthony D’Amico on double bass. The members of this ensemble, who will perform era-spanning works and arrangements, perform together as colleagues in various orchestras in the New England area including the Boston Philharmonic, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Cape Symphony Orchestra and the Portland Symphony.

Chatham Historical Society Executive Director Kevin D. Wright said Music at the Atwood, now in its third season, has blossomed from its humble origins.

“Music at the Atwood was a vision of a small few that has grown into an annual event that locals and visitors alike can enjoy,” Wright said. “Our goal is to bring high-end talent to Chatham and increase visibility of the Atwood Museum.”

Wright said the response to the concert series has been enthusiastic.

“We had no clue how well it would be received but quickly realized each concert was selling out,” Wright said. “All the indoor performances take place in the Mural Barn, which has great acoustics and is a wonderful intimate setting with seating for 54 to 60 people. The murals of Alice Stallknecht provide an additional 100-plus people painted on the walls, to fill the room for a quirky and fun atmosphere. Behind the performers is Sabin ‘Slim’ Hutchins, the main character in the murals, looking like he is conducting the performance. [The murals] definitely add to the charm of the concerts.”

Flutist Dianne Spoto said this is The Passero Trio’s first time performing in the Music at the Atwood Concert Series, and the musicians are thrilled. She explained that passero is the Italian word for “sparrow,” which in the folklore of many cultures symbolizes community, loyalty, and friendship.

“We are very excited about our program!” Spoto said. “Our choices span eras and styles, from classical Haydn to a powerful contemporary work by living Ukrainian composer Zoltan Amashi. The sensual and haunting tango ‘Oblivion’ by Argentinian composer Piazzolla is on the program, as well as ‘Concertino’ by the Austro-Czech composer Schulhoff, with its modal and rustic folk themes. The piccolo is featured in the two of the four movements, which is so much fun to play. It is a very colorful tapestry of music, allowing the lush and varied tone colors of flute, viola, and bass to really shine.”

Spoto went on to say that playing chamber music can be a very meaningful experience for musicians, because they are able to communicate on a very intimate and intuitive level, with their interpretations blossoming organically from within the trio, as opposed to following a conductor’s cues and interpretation.

“Alex, Anthony, and I found we synched up immediately at the very first reading,” Spoto said. “It has been an honor to make music with these two very gifted artists, and to be a part of a unique instrumentation.” Wright said the music series has grown from six indoor concerts in its inaugural year to a total of nine concerts this year, two of which will be outdoors under a tent with shuttle service to the museum from the middle school to help alleviate parking concerns. The parking lot will be reserved for handicapped parking, and Wright said he hopes others will use the shuttle services.

The concert series will continue with Cla da Bossa Nova on June 13. Violinist Audrey Wright will return on June 20 with a special concert called Luminous Being, a collaboration with her husband and artist Geoff Robertson which features a dress he designed that lights as she plays. On July 11 the first of two outdoor concerts will take place, a Bluegrass Bash featuring local musicians Monica Rizzio and Tom Hagerty. One week later, on July 18, the museum’s second outdoor concert, an Evening of Jazz, will feature the Jason Anick and Henry Acker Quartet, joined by trumpet player Summer Camargo. Folk guitarist Joe Jencks will take the stage on July 25, and the concert season concludes in August with three different piano concerts.

“Longtime Atwood Museum volunteer and former New England Conservatory alumni Don Broderick has graciously loaned his Yamaha grand piano for the third season,” Wright said. “On Aug. 8 pianist Joy Cline Phinney and cellist Emmanuel Feldman from New York City will perform at the Atwood. On Aug. 22 The Piano Men will take center stage with a tribute concert to Elton John and Billy Joel, a concert sure to rock the house. Finally, multi-talented and local pianist Ana Glig closes out the music series with a solo piano concert on Aug. 29.”

Wright feels it's incredibly important for local residents and anyone who enjoys music to have the opportunity to come to the Atwood Museum and not only enjoy world class music, but see that the museum is truly a cultural hub in Chatham during the summer.

“We are all facing challenging times with all the negative events going on in the world, and music has the powerful ability to bring joy and peace to so many people,” Wright said. “We are very proud that we can be a part of that joy.”

For more information and to purchase tickets visit or call 508-945-2493.