BAR HARBOR — The 49th Annual Bar Harbor Music Festival will take place from June 28 through July 26. The American Bus Association, a travel organization, is calling this one of the Top 100 Events in North America in 2015.
The Maine Sea Coast Mission, overlooking picturesque Frenchman Bay, will be the setting for the festival’s Opening Day Tea Concert on Sunday, June 28, at 4 p.m. Baritone Chad Sloan, described as “… a Show Stealer” by The Baltimore Sun, will collaborate with pianist Cara Chowning. Their program will include Beethoven lieder and Poulenc art song.
Brass Venture will return for the 11th consecutive season for Opening Night on Tuesday, June 30, at 8 p.m. Their performance of “Brass Through the Ages,” sponsored by Bar Harbor Bank & Trust, will take place at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church.
Pianist Steven Graff will make his festival debut on Thursday, July 2, at 8 p.m. again at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church. Lauded by The Chicago Sun Times as “… a world-class pianist,” he will perform works by Mozart, Schubert and Chopin among others.
The musical festivities will continue on Sunday, July 5, at 8 p.m. in the Great Room of the Bluenose Inn with the audience favorite Pops Concert, “How to Live Happily Ever After.” Soprano Janinah Burnett; baritone Keith Harris and jazz pianist Brian Hogan will entertain with music by Jerome Kern, Rodgers and Hammerstein, and George Gershwin. A pre-concert buffet dinner (optional) will be served beginning at 6 p.m. in the Bluenose Inn’s Rose Garden Restaurant.
The 32nd Annual “New Composers” Concert, “Our Voice: American Art Songs from the Beginning of the Twenty-First Century,” will mark lyric baritone Daniel Neer’s festival debut. This concert, made possible by the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University, is scheduled for Wednesday, July 8, at 8 p.m. at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church. A “New Composers” Forum will be held at the church on Tuesday, July 7, at 5:30 p.m.
The Bar Harbor Music Festival Opera Theatre will present “La Cenerentola,” Rossini’s comic drama masterpiece, at the newly renovated Criterion Theatre on Friday, July 10. Fenlon Lamb and Daniel Ellis are co-stage directors. Cara Chowning is the music director and oianist. Curtain time is 8 p.m. An event not to be missed, this is the only fully staged live opera production north of Portland this summer. This is a rare opportunity to hear some of the top young operatic talents in the country in your own community.
On Sunday, July 12, at 8 p.m., pianist Antonio Galera Lopéz is returning from Spain to perform music by Mozart, Czerny and Chopin at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church. The Palm Beach Daily News described this phenomenal talent: “Galera-Lopéz represents all that we admire in a pianist: warm sound, artistic phrasing and faultless technique.”
Ensemble Tremblay, Allison Kiger, flutist, director, will be in the spotlight on Tuesday, July 14, at 8 p.m. at the Congregational Church. This elite woodwind quintet with Phillip Silver, pianist from the Mozart at Monteux Festival in Hancock, will be heard in music by Samuel Barber, Mozart and Ludwig Thuille.
Returning by popular demand on Thursday, July 16, at 8 p.m. will be the Ardelia Trio: Janey Choi, violinist; Clara Yang, cellist; and Jihea Hong-Park, pianist, performing music by Vivaldi, Schubert, Paul Schoenfield and Mendelssohn. Korea’s EBS Network Evening News stated: “…There is something very special and unique about the way they present classical music.” This exquisite trio will play at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church.
The Wolverine Jazz Band is returning for the 11th consecutive season at Jazz Night on Sunday, July 19, at 8 p.m. at the Jackson Laboratory Commons. Considered to be one of Boston’s finest Dixieland, traditional jazz and swing bands, the group will entertain the anticipated sold-out house with music by Louis Armstrong, Jelly Roll Morton, W.C. Handy, Duke Ellington, Fats Waller and Bing Crosby. Jimmy Mazzy, banjo and vocals, now a legend in his own lifetime, will be the special guest artist. A cash bar will be available for the Jazz Night audience.
The Bar Harbor Festival String Orchestra conducted by Francis Fortier will perform three concerts in the final week of the 2015 Festival. Music by Mozart, Vivaldi, Tchaikovsky, Edmund Cionek, Grieg, Fanny Mendelssohn, Jill Jaffe, J.S. Bach and Gustav Holst is programmed. Guest soloists will be cellist Clara Yang and violinists Jeffrey Ellenberger and Janey Choi.
On Wednesday, July 22, at 8 p.m. (rain date Thursday, July 23, at 8 p.m.), the String Orchestra will perform its 43rd Annual Admission-free (voluntary contribution) Acadia National Park Outdoor Concert at Blackwoods Campground Amphitheatre in Otter Creek. Public parking is not available at Blackwoods. Shuttle buses will depart from the Jackson Laboratory parking lot on Route 3 for the amphitheatre every 10 minutes beginning at 6:45 p.m., returning during and after the concert.
The String Orchestra will next be heard at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church on Friday, July 24, at 8 p.m. in the Eleventh Annual Bob Noonan Memorial Concert, followed by the Annual Festival Gala on Sunday, July 26, at 8 p.m. at the Bar Harbor Club. An optional pre-concert buffet dinner will be offered at the club beginning at 6 p.m. There will be dancing to the waltzes of Johann Strauss immediately following the concert. The String Orchestra will perform two entirely different programs on July 24 and July 26.
Regular tickets are $25 and student tickets are $15. Pops, jazz and gala are $45. Opera tickets are $30, $45, $50 and $80. All tickets entitle the purchaser to a reserved seat. The pre-concert dinner price, $45, includes tax and gratuity. A season subscription for $300 saves over 20 percent off the single reserved ticket price and gets you the best seats in the house.
For tickets and information, write to Bar Harbor Music Festival, 741 West End Ave., Suite 4-B, New York, NY 10025-6222; call (212) 222-1026; email [email protected]; or visit www.barharbormusicfestival.org. After June 15, write Bar Harbor Music Festival, The Rodick Building, 59 Cottage St., Bar Harbor, ME 04609-1800; or call 288-5744.
Tickets also are available in Bar Harbor at Testa’s Restaurant, The Bar
Harbor Inn Gift Shop and Sherman’s Books & Stationery.