Trust me: George Kent absolutely doesn't understand what all the fuss is about. Yeah, he's retiring as music director for the Chorus of Westerly - an outfit he founded in 1959.
And, yes, over 1,400 kids have passed through the organization's performance hall in Westerly - now and deservedly named for Kent - in matriculations of voice, song, and fellowship.
Still, Kent takes up the baton for the final time, on Saturday in Wilcox Park for the Chorus' 32nd Summer Pops Concert, and he very much wants the evening to be about the music and the simple joys of community on a New England June evening.
Just the basics, then: the program includes works from "The Music Man," Ravel's Bolero, the 1812 Overture, and a George M. Cohan sing-a-long. The Compaq Big Band, the Bells of Christ Church and the Artillery Company of Newport will provide support - and Grucci will light up the sky with fireworks. A pre-concert show boasts sets by the Rivergods, the Damon Leibert Band and the Westerly Morris Men.
- RICK KOSTER
Chorus of Westerly Summer Pops Concert and music director George Kent's final concert, 8 p.m. Saturday, pre-show at 6:30 p.m. (rain dates June 24/25), Wilcox Park, 44 Broad St., Westerly; free; (401) 596-8663, chorusofwesterly.org.