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Benefit music and dance show nearing for Amherst Senior Center

The fourth annual Amherst Follies, which will be held at the Buckley Recital Hall at Amherst College, begins at 2 p.m.

Rosemary Kofler, a member of the Friends of the Senior Center Committee, said the event, which will last about two hours, has been a way to both raise money and build community.

The event brought in about $1,700 last year, which supported programs slated to be reduced or eliminated due to budget cuts, Kofler said.

“The fundraising done by the Friends is essential in maintaining these programs and services, the purpose of which is to maintain health, enhance dignity, support independence and promote seniors’ involvement in the community,” she said.

Among new acts this year will be the Hampshire Young People’s Chorus under the direction of K.C. Conlan, Rob Stahley, a young tenor at the University of Massachusetts who will be accompanied by pianist Nadine Shank, a UMass professor of music, Susan Andreau, a jazz and popular singer, and Tawdry, a group of five musicians who play guitar, cello, tuba and drums. Tawdry describes itself as adding a new beat to traditional folk and jazz-style tunes.

There will be several returning performers, including the Amherst Area Gospel Choir, singers Bill Shontz, Kyle Ray and Roger Tincknell, and dancers Anastasia Christie and German Colon.

Singer Kailey Shepardson and dancer Kaitlyn Shepardson will also perform,

The Follies will again be produced by Donna Lee of Donna Lee Entertainment, a vocalist and entertainer who started the event as a way to give back to the community and to support the senior population in Amherst. Lee is responsible for lining up the numerous entertainers, with the hope of appealing to people of all ages. She will also perform.

After the show, which will have one intermission, refreshments will be sold and attendees will have a chance to interact with the performers.

Kofler said ushers will assist people who are dropped off at the 53 College St. site, with parking available in nearby college lots. The theater seats between 400 and 450 people.

Tickets are $15 in advance and $17 at the door for adults, $7 and $8 for children, and can be purchased at A.J. Hastings, 45 South Pleasant St., or the Senior Center, in the Bangs Community Center at 70 Boltwood Walk. For more information, call 259-3060.

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