WellesleyWeston Magazine

WINTER 2014/2015

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

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comfortable seating, clear sightlines, and diverse schedules featuring national and regional artists attract audiences who come for the show, not just to socialize or take selfies with the stage as backdrop. "During the 1990s, there was a real absence of live music in Metrowest," says David Lavalley, TCAN executive director. "TCAN grew out of a church coffeehouse. Its first dedicated space was a down- town Natick storefront that seated 60. At the same time, Natick Mall was being re-developed and the new tax revenue enabled the town to replace its aging Central Fire Station, built in 1875. There was talk of putting a parking lot in its place. Instead, a group of local citizens pur- chased the building from the town and raised funds for a venue for regional and national musicians, theater groups, and artists." Following a $2.5 million restoration, TCAN opened in 2003 as a nonprofit venue that now offers more than 300 events and classes annually. The historic building retains its retro feel, with brick walls, high ceilings, and four arched bays, transformed into a contemporary 290-seat performance space with a gallery for work by regional artists. "Over the last 30 to 40 years, there have been fewer and fewer places for live music because it is very difficult to make viable as a business," said Lavalley. "Costs are high. Our 501(c)(3) nonprofit status means we're able to raise money through donations to keep ticket prices low and available to a wide range of people." More than 24,000 people attended TCAN performances in 2013. Fifty-nine percent were from Metrowest. More than 4,000 came from central and western Massachusetts, other New England states, and New York and New Jersey. In addition to a paid staff of six, the venue relies on nearly 200 volunteers who usher, raise funds and business sponsorships, and staff the box office and membership drives. Comedy, blues, jazz, folk, alternative, classical, children's, rock, pop, New Age, roots and country, community theater — it's all here. Among 75 performances in the past 18 months were regional talents and such boldface names as Tom Rush, Peter Wolf, Leo Kottke, Borromeo String Quartet, James Montgomery, Rickie Lee Jones, and comedian Sandra Bernhard. The tribute band Beatlejuice was here, as were Dave Davies of The Kinks, Loudon Wainwright III, and multi-genre harpist Deborah Henson-Conant. Tuesday night Folk/Acoustic Open Mic, held monthly, has had a loyal following since 1997. Rock Off Main Street, a staple for 15 years 190 W e l l e s l e y W e s t o n M a g a z i n e | w i n t e r 2 0 1 4 / 2 0 1 5 excursions "the trio's creative energy electrified the room" S C O T T B U M P

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