SANTA FE — It’s a summer of several exciting firsts for the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, which presents its 47th season July 14 through Aug. 19.
From a brand-new series and highly anticipated artist debuts to inaugural performances and premieres of Festival-commissioned works, this season is filled with can’t-miss musical moments.
Throughout its six-week run, the Festival—which draws devoted audiences from around the globe—presents 45 concerts featuring a range of works that span six centuries (the 16th to the 21st), performed by 87 of the world’s greatest musicians. The season’s repertoire includes classics by Mozart, Brahms, and Dvořák; Baroque masterpieces by Bach and Vivaldi; modern gems by Britten, Françaix, and George Crumb; and newly commissioned works by leading American composers John Harbison and Michael Gandolfi.
Every concert in the Festival’s 2019 season offers something truly memorable, from compelling works to world- class performances in historic and wonderfully intimate settings. Here are just a few highlights concertgoers won’t want to miss:
Over the course of three evenings (August 13–15), violinist Ida Kavafian and pianist Anne-Marie McDermott perform—for the first time in the Festival’s history—the complete cycle of Beethoven’s Sonatas for Violin & Piano. The set of 10 works includessome of the most unforgettable sonatas ever written, like the radiant “Spring” and groundbreaking “Kreutzer.”
On August 7, conductor David Zinman leads Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn & Strings, featuring two major artists—tenorPaul Appleby and Berlin Philharmonic Principal Horn Stefan Dohr—in their Festival debuts.
The popular Music at Noon Series (which continues to offer a total of 10 concerts on Tuesdays and Thursdays) expands to includefive Wednesday concerts—three of which (July 24, July 31 & August 7) are powerful recitals that celebrate iconic masterpieces of thepiano-vocal repertoire, such as Schubert’s song cycle Die Winterreise.
The Festival presents four commissioned works. Three of those works are world premieres—including string quartets by Grammy-nominated composer Michael Gandolfi and the two participants in the Festival’s Young Composers String Quartet Project, Matthew Ricketts and Alex Stephenson (August 2)—and the fourth work, a monodrama for soprano and ensemble written and conducted by Pulitzer Prize- winning composer John Harbison, is a New Mexico premiere (July 14 & 15).
On July 28 & 29, Wei Luo gives the world premiere of the solo piano piece Poems, written for her by the Festival’s Artistic Director,Marc Neikrug.
Eighteen artists make their Festival debuts, including standouts from the opera and orchestra worlds— such as Paul Appleby and Stefan Dohr (see above), New York City Ballet Principal Oboe Randall Wolfgang, mezzo-soprano Christianne Stotijn, and bass-baritone Philippe Sly—plus acclaimed up-and- coming artists like pianist Zoltán Fejérvári, violinist Paul Huang, and guitarist MengSu.
Six artists give solo recitals: violinist Soovin Kim (July 27) and pianists Kirill Gerstein (July 18), Wei Luo (July 25), Haochen Zhang (August 1), Gilles Vonsattel (August 6), and Zoltán Fejérvári (August 13).
The Festival’s Sunday, Monday, and Wednesday series concerts showcase dozens of enthralling works, such as Hans Abrahamsen’s Walden for Wind Quintet (July 17) and Takemitsu’s Rain Tree for Percussion Trio (July 24), as well as masterpieces like Mendelssohn’s Octet for Strings (July 14 & 15) and Schubert’s “Death and the Maiden” Quartet (August 7).
Dozens of renowned Festival artists make return appearances, including mezzo-soprano Susan Graham; pianists Inon Barnatan, ShaiWosner, and Jon Kimura Parker; violist Paul Neubauer; flutist Tara Helen O’Connor; clarinetist David Shifrin; and the Dover, Escher,FLUX, Miami, and Orion string quartets.
Director of Artistic Administration Valerie Guy hosts pre-concert talks with all four of the composers whose works the Festival commissioned and will present in either a world or New Mexico premiere: John Harbison (July 14 & 15), Michael Gandolfi (August 2), and Young Composers String Quartet Project participants Matthew Ricketts and Alex Stephenson (August 2). Pre-concert talks are held in the Women’s Board Room at the New Mexico Museum of Art one hour prior to each concert.
Every summer, the Festival presents four free Youth Concerts, which make classical music fun and accessible to children of all ages.
The concerts are held in St. Francis Auditorium at the New Mexico Museum of Art and feature excerpts from the current season’s repertoire, performed in highly engaging ways by Festival musicians. In 2019, the concerts—all of which have a theme—are on July 15 (Miami String Quartet), July 22 (Percussion), July 29 (Dvořák’s Piano Quintet), and August 5 (Bach & Schubert).
THE FESTIVAL’S 2019 GALA
The 2019 Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival Gala, In the Key of Summer, will be held July 16 at the Eldorado Hotel & Spa in Santa Fe. This much-anticipated social event will attract more than 200 culture-minded individuals from across the country.
Pianist Inon Barnatan—hailed as “a complete artist” by former New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert and “one of the mostadmired pianists of his generation” by The New York Times—kicks off the evening with a recital in St. Francis Auditorium at the New Mexico Museum of Art, performing works by Bach, Mendelssohn, Schubert, and Gershwin. After the recital, guests head to the Eldorado for cocktails and a gourmet, multicourse dinner with wine pairings; a live auction with exquisite, one-of-a kind items and priceless experiences; and dessert and dancing in the hotel’s CAVA Lounge, where music will be provided by jazz pianist John Rangel and friends. This year the Festival is delighted to announce that Kenneth R. Marvel will serve as Gala Chair.
Proceeds from this exclusive event benefit the Festival’s six-week summer season as well as its year-round music education programs, which serve nearly 6,000 local schoolchildren.
Tickets are on sale now, including individual tickets and tables for 10 guests. Reservations are $600 per person ($400 is tax deductible). To purchase tickets, contact the Festival’s Events & Board Relations Manager, Paige Ryan, at 505.983.2075, ext. 111, or firstname.lastname@example.org. For further information, visit SantaFeChamberMusic.com/Gala.
Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival concerts are held in two historic locations in downtown Santa Fe: St. Francis Auditorium in the New Mexico Museum of Art, 107 West Palace Avenue, and The Lensic Performing Arts Center, 211 West San Francisco Street.
Individual tickets, subscriptions, and FlexPasses can be purchased with any major credit card by calling 505.982.1890 or 888.221.9836, ext. 102. Individual reserved-seat tickets are also available at SantaFeChamberMusic.com, by emailing email@example.com, or by visiting the Festival’s Ticket Office at 208 Griffin Street in Santa Fe.
Tickets are nonrefundable. However, if you’re unable to use your tickets, you can donate them to the Festival prior to the performance in person, via phone (see above for numbers), or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Ticket exchanges are subject to fees and restrictions.
Founded in 1972, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival has become one of the world’s preeminent music festivals, guided by a visionary spirit and dedicated to artistic excellence and innovation. Contributing to its magical feeling is the Festival’s unique setting amid the timeless splendors of Santa Fe and New Mexico’s Sangre de Cristo Mountains. For information on Santa Fe, visit santafe.org.
Under the leadership of Executive Director Steven Ovitsky and Artistic Director Marc Neikrug, the Festival invites both distinguished seasoned musicians and acclaimed emerging artists to perform during its six-week season every summer. Patrons return year after year to enjoy the Festival’s many chamber music concerts, solo recitals, and open rehearsals. Throughout the year, the Festival reaches out to local students in pre-K and grades K–6 with its innovative and inspiring music education programs.