Editorial License

Rob Hammerton, music educator etc.

Charles River Tent Flaps: 1971

[“CHARLES RIVER TENT FLAPS – THE FIRST TEN YEARS” is made up of interviews with past and present staff members and campers of the Charles River Creative Arts Program of Dover, Massachusetts and of articles from The Daily Double.” -from “Tent Flaps”, published for the CRCAP tenth-anniversary celebration, summer 1979 (David Downing, editor). We pick up the story as the CRCAP that we know begins to take shape…]



Prime Time was done as a sequel to The Mouse in the White House because the latter was so successful. I remember going in the big tent and watching a rehearsal. It was really the first time that I was aware of Kippy who was directing Prime Time. This person was so enthusiastic, jumping up and down, waving her arms. I really wanted to be part of the show.

I got involved with the tech crew. It rained one night, maybe both nights. I can’t remember. There was a scene where there was a waterbed. Anne Matthies was the head of the tech crew. She was the one who initially really made me feel involved, really made me love it. There was a blackout and I was supposed to get the waterbed which was really an air mattress filled with water. I went charging across the stage, grabbed the waterbed which naturally weighed a ton, gave a good tug, and fell right on my rear end.”


‘Anne, where’s your whale?’”


I think it was under Nissy that Noontime Shows changed to each person being responsible for one a summer. Before that, each department had a day a week. In those days people felt that if it was a Music Department day, it had to be Music Department Noontime Show. The entire department would take part. The kids took part very little until Nissy took over.”

There was a group, the Greasy Spoons, a takeoff on Sha Na Na. It was basically what the Freelancers and Musical Parody are now. Greg Sandow was in charge of it. Jamie Walker, Steve Wright, Jimmy Phillips were in the group. They had groupies: Jenny Farrington, Julie Matthies, Sarah Morrison, Meg Vaillencourt, Gretchen Jones. They were practically the only kids who were involved in the Noontime Shows.”


It was also a summer of disasters, naturally-caused and human-caused…

They had a tent now instead of the long stage that Peter built. It was a huge circus tent with a stage at one end of it. It was in the middle of the lawn in front of the middle building. It was when [Kippy] was getting married that it blew down, during Hurricane Dora. We ent back the next day and it was all over Dover. We tried to put the pieces back together but it was useless.”

It was also the year that the tennis bubble deflated. It was stabbed actually. If I knew they were going to do it, I would have come over and helped them. It was so ugly.”

June 9, 2019 - Posted by | Uncategorized

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: