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In flavor, in verse, in governance

Collaboration is the name of the game.

We're pretty sure that Rep. Jim McGovern wishes that word was a little more prevalent in his goings-on Capitol Hill-wise. But debt ceiling and resignation woes aside, the congressman himself has been up to a lot of working with other folx, including using a little technology to aid in a recent commencement speech.

Collaboration is at the very core of singing with other people, and we hear it in regional champions, all-female barbershop quartet Saffron. The four women who make up the group, Valerie Reynolds, Amanda Fowski, Sue Berry, and Christine Bulgini, stopped by the studios after teaching a master class on the genre to some of Marcos Carreras' students at Springfield Conservatory of the Arts. Saffron competes in the Northeast Regional Sweet Adeline's Competition on May19th, seeking to regain their title.

And working together although your events are very far apart is what we got two former poet laureates to do. Martín Espada and Rich Michaelson will each be giving readings on May 20th: Espada at a benefit for the LAVA center, and Michaelson at Forbes Library (with Michaelson giving a bonus reading through Zoom on May 21st). In addition to hearing some of their new work, we also get a glimpse of the neighborhood in which they both grew up.

Christopher “Monte'' Belmonte is host and executive producer of NEPM's The Fabulous 413. He was born and raised in Massachusetts and has been a radio host in western Massachusetts for the last 20 years — the last 17 of them as host of Mornings with Monte on The River 93.9/WRSI.
Kaliis Smith is a radio host and producer for NEPM's The Fabulous 413. She was most recently host and producer at The River 93.9/WRSI where she appeared on Mornings with Monte for the Nerdwatch segment and hosted weekday evenings.