Singing the Same Song

Gwen Goldsmith and Marybeth Bauries

Music pervades the lives of Gwen Goldsmith and Marybeth Bauries. Music was important to each of them even before they met. It brought them together, nurtured their relationship, and continues to give them hope and enjoyment every day. 

Marybeth has lived in the Twin Cities most of her life, and has sung in many choirs, including her high school choir at Minnehaha Academy and church choirs. She studied music therapy and, although she did not pursue it as a career, she is passionate about music.

Gwen moved to the Twin Cities in 1976, and their lives intersected in a voice class at the University of Minnesota. Marybeth was there to sing, and Gwen was her accompanist. The two got to know each other, sharing interests in music, birding, reading, and more. They fell in love and moved into their home of almost 40 years on 22nd and Garfield, where Marybeth cultivated an extensive garden (since she didn’t like to mow the grass). They also worked for the same St. Paul company for many years as bookkeepers.

When it was time to move, The Kenwood Retirement Community was their logical choice. They had been visiting friends at The Kenwood for years, and wanted to stay in their neighborhood, so when Marketing Director Karen Edberg about an available apartment, they jumped at the chance and were thrilled to learn that Dominick Argento, the famous opera composer, had been its previous resident.

Marybeth and Gwen appreciate the many musical offerings at The Kenwood, including birthday party entertainment, parlor concerts, and MacPhail Music for Life. Through the years Gwen has enjoyed playing chamber music with friends, and this continued at The Kenwood until the pandemic made it impossible for them to meet. When a group of residents recently started the Kenwood Singers, Gwen became their accompanist, playing standards such as “Look for the Silver Lining” and “Yankee Doodle Dandy.”

Just a few blocks away from The Kenwood, St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral has been their long-time church home. Marybeth sang in the All Souls Choir and the Cathedral Choir. Gwen led a youth choir and taught Church School for many years. During the COVID pandemic, Gwen performed a piano recital at St. Mark’s which was streamed so that friends could watch and listen remotely. Marybeth and Gwen jokingly refer to The Kenwood as “St. Mark’s Annex” since so many of their St. Mark’s friends have lived and continue to live there through the years. When they were married at St. Mark’s in 2013, the Rev. John Rettger officiated, and his wife Dora was the ring bearer. John has since passed away, but the two couples were able to share some time together when they all lived at The Kenwood at the same time. Marybeth and Gwen are looking forward to rejoining in person. In the meantime, their oldest friends at St. Mark’s continue to bring communion to them and other St. Markans at The Kenwood.

Gwen and Marybeth enjoy cooking in their Kenwood apartment. Gwen is an accomplished cook and baker and was a finalist in the Star Tribune cookie contest in 2020 with her recipe for “New Scenic Cookies.” They also enjoy the special dining events at The Kenwood, including a recent steak and lobster dinner, and a luau, praising the food and service, and sharing a table with yet another St. Mark’s couple, Jim and Mary Huber.

The couple credit The Kenwood for keeping COVID vaccinations current and prioritizing residents’ safety. Marybeth was very happy when she was able to join a recent Kenwood visit to the Minnesota Raptor Center and saw some birds up close. She remarks about the many residents at The Kenwood who daily show “how to grow old with dignity and energy. They are a beacon to us.” A conversation with Marybeth and Gwen is like a contrapuntal piece of music, each singing her independent melody, and the two blending into one beautiful song.