Healing music for the darkest of timesThe concert will benefit a local academy.

"Carol Willis Buechler might have gathered this group of friends to make music, even if she hadn't wished to raise money for her son's school.The benefit for West Sound Academy, scheduled for Sept. 22, is for Buechler a lark.The musicians are my friends, Buechler said, but they're all consummate professionals, too. We live what we do, and it's a lot of fun to make music with them.The musicians, who will play and sing a true cross-section of classical works ranging from Samuel Barber to Johann Sebastian Bach, are remarkably intertwined.Mary Foster Grant and Elizabeth Grant are sisters who have been playing and singing together all their lives. Buechler and Mary Grant first collaborated musically at Wilkes Elementary School, followed in subsequent years by concerts at Commodore Middle School.World-famous flutist Janet See and Buechler are neighbors. This concert will, Buechler says, combine elements of the casual and the formal.The stage set of antiques provided for the occasion by Bad Blanche should lend the affair a salon-like effect, Buechler believes, and the professionally catered food should add to the elegance.The benefit will be a chance to dress up, Buechler says, but the formality won't carry over to the concert itself.Buechler and the other musicians will address the audience directly. It will be formal in dress and spirit, but informal in relationship between the musicians and audience, Buechler said. People will get a chance to learn about the music and the instruments in a relaxed way.There will be, Buechler notes, some unusual instruments and instrumentation. See has rewritten the clarinet part in a Schubert trio for her flute.While Buechler believes that audiences will enjoy the light-hearted evening, she notes that rehearsing for the concert served an important, if unplanned, purpose for the musicians themselves during the darkness of last week.It's probably the most healing thing I've done, Buechler said, making music with everyone. * * * * *Vocalists Susan Buttram and Carol Willis Buechler perform with flutist Janet See and pianists Mary Foster Grant, Elizabeth Grant and Johanna Mastenbrook 7:30 p.m. Sept. 22 at the Playhouse in a benefit concert for West Sound Academy. The program includes works by Bach, Mozart, Mahler and others. Tickets are $30/adults, $12/students (under 18). Call 360-598-5954. "

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