When the much-loved Olympic Music Festival
hit its 30-year milestone last season, Executive Director Alan Iglitzin
packed its schedule with heavy hitters: big names, popular pieces, and wonderful program curation. The season Iglitzin himself called the "best ever" will certainly be hard to top, but there's a lot to anticipate.
In this Musical Chairs episode from June 2013, Iglitzin shared with us some of his favorite classical music.
First, of course, is the festival's pastoral setting. Meteorologists say we're in for a long, hot summer--a perfect forecast for a concert series that sets up camp on a former dairy farm on the Olympic Peninsula. In sunny weather, concergoers can stroll around the property or set up a picnic near the refurbished barn where each concert is held.
And then there's the vibe. After nine months of ironed suits, slacks and skirts, both musicians and audience members are more than happy to discard their Sunday best and wear whatever they wish come June. There's no dress code at the Olympic Music Festival, whether you're a spectator or a performer.
Die-hard festival fans will recognize many returning musicians this season, including violinists Korine Fujiwara and Ray Chen, pianist (and co-Artistic Dreictor) Julio Elizalde, and of course Iglitzin himself, once the violist for the Philadelpha String Quartet.
Like last year, this season's lineup
boasts a few concerts focused on one composer: one shines the spotlight on Mozart and three take a closer look at Beethoven. The first all-Beethoven concert juxtaposes his three compositional eras and offers a great introduction for anyone new to chamber music; the second features his string trios; and the third highlights some of his later, lesser-known chamber music.
I love when concerts attempt to tell a story, especially when it's with an unpredictable mix of music, so I'm looking forward to the July 5 & 6 program called "Arias and Arguments: From Love to Loss in Four Acts." Accompanied opera arias (sung by Zachary Gordin
and Shana Blake Hill
) and solo piano works (played by Paul Hersh
) come together to trace the story of failed love, from courtship to honeymoon to conflict to parting. The story even has a narrator in Anamaria T. Lloyd
If you're one of those people who presses the fast-forward button to the "good part" in a movie, you might enjoy "Dramatic Moments in Chamber Music" on August 30 & 31. No need to wait for the good part here; all three of the pieces on the program are filled with climactic musical moments. First comes Tartini's "Devil's Trill" Violin Sonata, Then Shostakovich's Sonata in D Minor for PIano and Cello. The closing piece is Brahms' Piano Quartet No. 2, about as Romantic and Viennese as it gets.
The festival concludes with two virtuosi, Ray Chen and Julio Elizalde, in the spotlight. Together they play Clair de lune
, Ravel's Tzigane
, and pieces by Falla, Schubert and Stravinsky.
You can find complete concert details and directions to Quilcene on the Olympic Music Festival's website