Coming up: Bluegrass in Clifton Springs, a talent showcase in Farmington and a music fest in Geneva

We've still got a few weeks to go, but the signs are mounting that summer is soon to make way for fall: School supplies on the store shelves, pumpkin spice products poised to make their return, Rochester venues gearing up for next month's Fringe Festival, and CMAC preparing for its final few shows of the summer 2019 season. (Thursday's show featuring Darryl Hall and John Oates with G Love & Special Sauce will be followed by The Beach Boys on Aug. 22 and a capella superstars Pentatonix with Rachel Platten on Aug. 27.)

It's time once again to dip into the A&E mailbag to see what awaits for those seeing to get out and about in the region:

Back to the 'Tracks'

Rebecca Colleen makes a return appearance for the Tunes by the Tracks concert series Wednesday, Aug. 21, at Clifton Springs Library, 4 Railroad St., Clifton Springs. The recent Hobart and William Smith Colleges grad, Rebecca Collen McDonald has begun making a name for herself in the bluegrass/acoustic circles, often with the band The Chore Lads. Three-time IBMA Female Vocalist of the Year Claire Lynch has cited her "beautiful voice and an intuitive gift for interpretation, along with a kindred heart that permeates all her songs," in a testimonial shared on the Tunes by the Tracks Facebook page.

The concert takes place from 7 to 9 p.m. (doors open at 6:30 p.m.), with, as always, a time designated for the "Mystery Pickers" open mic. Admission is free, with a $5 donation suggested for the feature and refreshments.

Want to hear more of Rebecca Colleen? She and the Chore Lads will be performing this Sunday, Aug. 18, at Rose Hill Mansion in Geneva, for the concluding installment of the Rose Hill Concert Series organized by the Geneva Historical Society. It starts at 5 p.m. at the mansion, 3373 Route 96A.

A 'Showman' showcase

Cobblestone Arts Center's "Celebration of Youth" summer work program for teens will culminate Friday with a showcase of talent at noon. This year's performance will feature selections from "The Greatest Showman," and the public is welcome to attend the showcase at Cobblestone, 1622 State Route 332, Farmington.

For close to 20 years, the program has united youth across the region, including participants from Ontario County and the city of Rochester, with the teens collaborating alongside adults with disabilities to create works of art, music and dance. In the words of a Cobblestone release, it "celebrates the spirit of inclusion, diversity, and creativity."

A silent auction of work, including large-scale painings (bids starting at $100) will accompany the show. For more information, call 585-398-0220 or visit

Horns across time and genre

St. Thomas' Episcopal Church, 2000 Highland Ave. in Rochester, will host Ensemble Cornisti for its Music on the Lawn concert at 7-8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 16. It will feature Erin Futterer and Mark Questad on horns — period and modern — and Carl Questad on piano for a concert exploring horn music across time and genre.

The concert is free — and so are parking and ice cream. Bring lawn chairs and/or blankets for the family-friendly event,

In search of 'Christmas Carol' kids

OK, we're just halfway through August, so it's understandable that some would be thinking "Bah, humbug" to talk of Christmas events. But at Geva Theatre Center, it's not too early to start planning for the annual production of "A Christmas Carol," and Geva is looking for kids to fill eight children's roles.

Geva will hold auditions for young actors on Wednesday, Sept. 11, from 3:30 to 6 p.m., and Thursday, Sept. 12, from 3 to 6 p.m. at Geva Theatre Center, 75 Woodbury Blvd., Rochester, by appointment only. Callbacks will be from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 13. There are eight children’s roles and two casts of children will alternate performances. In a release, Geva started it actively encourages children of all races/ethnicities, LGBTQ children, and children with disabilities to audition.

Auditionees must be between the ages of 5 and 13. Because of the professional actors union rules, children must not turn 14 until after Dec. 29, 2019. Auditionees should come to the audition with a headshot or photograph, and a resume of experience, if any. Each young actor will be required sing either one verse of a prepared song (please bring sheet music in the correct key) or, if the child does not have sheet music, “Happy Birthday” or a holiday song is acceptable.

So young performers will have a sense of what to expect and how to prepare and audition with confidence, Geva and Avenue Blackbox Theatre will hold two free audition workshops — 2:30-5:30 p.m. Aug. 27 and 5:30-7:30 p.m. Aug. 28 — at Avenue Blackbox Theatre, 780 Joseph Ave., Rochester. RSVP at

This adaptation of the classic Charles Dickens tale of redemption premiered in 2010 with a script by Geva Artistic Director Mark Cuddy and music by Gregg Coffin. This year’s performances begin on Nov. 27 and run in the Wilson Stage through Dec. 29. Rehearsals get underway Nov. 9.

To schedule an audition appointment, call 585-232-1366, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Who needs Woodstock when you've got Drumstock?

Couldn't make it to Bethel Woods for this weekend's Woodstock anniversary concert? No fear, there's a music fest much closer to home — with much nicer traffic — this Saturday in Geneva. Lake Drum Brewing, at 16 E. Castle St., will host Drumstock '19 this Saturday, Aug. 17, in conjunction with Climbing Bines Hop Farm and Craft Ale Company and Twisted Rail Brewing Company. To make it even sweeter, it's free.

It's a celebration of live music with nine regional acts scheduled to take the stage behind the brewey, plus plenty of food vendors presenting everything from BBQ to pizza to Mexican fare.

Bands scheduled to perform are St. Vith, Darwin, The Primates, Funky Blu Roots, The Infrared Radiation Orchestra, The Cool Club & The Lipker Sisters, Boomslang, Vagabonds Hobos & Hoers, and Ghost town Ramblers.