‘Once upon a time’ at Aspen Music Fest | AspenTimes.com

‘Once upon a time’ at Aspen Music Fest

Stewart Oksenhorn
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN ” Each year, the Aspen Music Festival chooses a theme, a narrative thread that runs through its sum­mer season and is spotlighted in a series of high-profile concerts. Last year’s theme, Blue Notes, examined connections between classical and jazz forms; earlier festivals have explored themes of nature and cele­brations.

This year, that narrative thread is storytelling itself. Presented under the “Once Upon a Time …” theme, the Music Festival’s summer season will explore folklore, legends and fairy tales, with per­formances of opera versions of “Hansel and Gretel” and “Cinderella,” Wagner’s Overture to “The Flying Dutchman,” and the world premiere of John Harbison’s “Great Gatsby” suite. The season concludes with David Zinman, the festival’s music director, conducting Schoenberg’s epic love story, “Gurre-Lieder.”

The 59th Aspen Music Festival runs June 19 through Aug. 17, with daily performances including opera, cham­ber music, orchestral concerts, master classes, lectures and more.

Additional highlights of the season include a concert featuring four of the world’s greatest pianists ” Emanuel Ax, Joseph Kalichstein, Yefim Bronf­man and Misha Dichter ” an appear­ance by the Bronfman-Shaham-Har­rell Trio, featuring pianist Bronfman, violinist Gil Shaham and cellist Lynn Harrell; a performance of Peter Lieberson’s acclaimed “Neruda Songs”; and the Aspen debut of the eclectic duo of bassist Edgar Meyer and mandolinist Chris Thile.

Other musicians scheduled to appear this season include violinists Joshua Bell, Robert McDuffie and Julie Fischer; pianists Jonathan Biss, John O’Conor and Vladimir Feltsman; cel­list Alisa Weilerstein; guitarist Sharon Isbin; mezzo-soprano Jane Eaglen; ensembles the Emerson String Quar­tet and the Takacs Quartet; and con­ductors Marin Alsop, James Conlon, David Robertson, Nicholas McGegan and Leonard Slatkin.

The season will feature the world premiere of Pierre Jalbert’s Cello Sonata, performed by cellist David Finckel and pianist Wu Han, plus world premieres of works by Daniel Kellogg and Barbara White.

The season also will continue last year’s collaborations with other local arts organizations. In conjunction with Jazz Aspen Snowmass, the Music Festival will present two jazz-oriented concerts: vocalist Patti Austin, backed by the Count Basie Orchestra, will pay tribute to legendary singer Ella Fitzgerald, and Cuban singer Isaac Delgado will play a concert of timba music. The Aspen Santa Fe Ballet Company will return to the festival, dancing to live music performed by the Aspen Concert Orchestra.

For a full season preview, go to http://www.aspenmusicfestival.com.Tick­ets and season passes are available through the website, or by calling 925-­9042.


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