Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival Launches July 19


The musically robust 2015 season of the celebrated Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival launches July 19 and extends through Aug. 24 with 42 performances in Santa Fe and Albuquerque concert halls.

Festival concerts this summer by more than 75 world-renowned ensembles and musicians include the return engagement of Alan Gilbert, music director of the New York Philharmonic, as artist-in-residence. Acclaimed musicians from across the world will perform nearly 90 brilliant compositions from Bach to Tchaikovsky to highly regarded composers of today.

“We are continuing our long-standing tradition of presenting the finest in chamber music – from iconic masterworks to cutting-edge works being created today and new compositions we are commissioning to expand the body of chamber music,” said Marc Neikrug, in his l8th year as artistic director of the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival. “Heading that impressive list of performers is Alan Gilbert, who helped us celebrate the Festival’s 40th anniversary in 2012.”

Composers with commissioned works being performed at the Festival include Alexander Goehr. His Seven Impromptus for two pianos, Op. 96, featuring Ran Dank and Soyeon Kate Lee, was commissioned by the Festival. In addition, his Variations (Homage to Haydn), Op. 93, will be performed by pianist Kirill Gerstein who commissioned it and for whom it was written.

Sean Shepherd’s Festival-commission String Quartet No. 2 will be premiered by the FLUX Quartet. Also receiving its world premiere is Marc Neikrug’s Acequias for Guitar and String Quartet, commissioned by

Faye Kellerman in honor of her husband Jonathan’s 60th birthday, with acclaimed Polish guitarist Łukasz Kuropaczewski and the Orion String Quartet.


A special Festival highlight will be the performance on Aug. 23 of famed French composer Olivier Messiaen’s Des canyons aux étoiles (From the Canyons to the Stars), inspired by Utah’s Bryce Canyon, with Alan Gilbert conducting 44 musicians – the largest ensemble ever gathered at the Festival for a single composition.

Additional notable performances will include Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, featuring a frequent Festival guest, Benny Kim, as violin soloist; an arrangement for string trio by violinist Dmitry Sitkovetsky of Bach’s keyboard composition Goldberg Variations; the first Festival performance of Liszt’s complete Transcendental Études, performed by Russian pianist Kirill Gerstein; four Beethoven String Quartets; two Brahms Piano Quartets; and a broad spectrum of guitar music ranging from the Baroque to contemporary Polish composer Krzysztof Meyer, featuring Łukasz Kuropaczewski.

Returning ensembles performing at the 2015 Festival include the Orion, Miró, Johannes, FLUX, Dover and Miami string quartets. Making its Festival debut is the recently formed Montrose Trio, consisting of members of the former Tokyo String Quartet, violinist Martin Beaver and cellist Clive Greensmith, along with pianist Jon Kimura Parker.

Other Festival artists of special note include Principal Horn of the New York Philharmonic Philip Myers; Principal Clarinet Michael Rusinek and Principal Bassoon Nancy Goeres of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra; William Preucil, concertmaster of the Cleveland Orchestra; Artist-in-Association of the New

York Philharmonic, pianist Inon Barnatan; and critically acclaimed pianists Marc-André Hamelin (nine-time Grammy Award nominee) and Kirill Gerstein (First Prize winner of the 2001 Arthur Rubinstein Piano Competition and recipient of a 2010 Avery Fisher Career Grant).

Also participating in the Festival will be Albert Imperato, guest lecturer on Messiaen’s Des canyons aux étoiles on Aug. 23. His 20 years of experience in artist management, the recording industry, publicity and marketing have made him a respected and popular speaker on the subject of classical music—especially Messiaen’s works.

His presentation, open to ticket holders one hour before the concert, is entitled “Anatomy of an Obsession.”

Eleven artists and ensembles are making their Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival debuts in the 2015 season.

The Festival’s popular pre-concert talks with composers of commissioned works will take place one hour before performances at the concert venues.


Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival concerts will take place at three venues in Santa Fe and Albuquerque. They are the St. Francis Auditorium at the New Mexico Museum of Art, West Palace & Lincoln Avenues in Santa Fe;

The Lensic Performing Arts Center, 211 West San Francisco Street in Santa Fe; and the Simms Auditorium at Albuquerque Academy, 6400 Wyoming Boulevard NE in Albuquerque.


Individual ticket prices range from $12 to $78, depending on series, venue and seat location. Special discounted pricing is available at $10 for youth ages 6-18 and $15 for patrons ages 19-35.

Festival concert subscriptions in a variety of options may be purchased with any major credit card by calling 505.982.1890 (or toll free at 888-221-9836, Ext. 102); by faxing orders to 505-986-0251 (credit card orders only); by visiting, where seat selection is available; by emailing; and in person 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, at the Festival office, 208 Griffin St. in Santa Fe.

During the Festival, the ticket office is located in the lobby of the New Mexico Museum of Art, West Palace and Lincoln Avenues in Santa Fe, open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. There are no refunds; however, patrons unable to use their tickets may donate them back to the Festival in person prior to the performance or by emailing the ticket office at Exchanges are subject to fees and restrictions.

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