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The Enso String Quartet will give two performances in Manchester, Vt.

Summer Classical Music Festival Season Heats Up

By Stephen DanknerSpecial to iBerkshires
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It's here! The summer concert season is upon us, with stellar programs at Taconic Music, located in idyllic Manchester, Vt., and at Tanglewood in Lenox, Mass. Concertgoers will have the opportunity to hear great chamber music performed at its artistic best, in inviting and intimate surroundings.


Taconic Music

Taconic Music's second Summer Festival week features a masterclass with Grammy-nominated guest ensemble the Enso String Quartet, a Saturday-night concert showcasing canonical masterworks (and also including a touch of the musically exotic), and the first NextGen concert of the 2018 season.

Why go? Taconic Music is a unique and engaging music festival, with outstanding guest artists sharing center stage with gifted young performers interpreting classical masterpieces, along with musical rarities and surprises.

Here's the schedule of this week’s three not-to-be-missed concerts/events:

• Friday, June 29, 2-4 p.m.: The Enso String Quartet will lead a masterclass at Zion Episcopal Church in Manchester, Vt. They will work with student participants of Taconic Music's Chamber Music Intensive (CMI) - talented college and post-graduate musicians who are in residence in Manchester for four weeks, studying chamber music with Taconic Music faculty. The audience will observe how chamber music is refined and raised to the highest artistic performance standards.

• Saturday, June 30, 10 a.m.-noon: Taconic Music presents a dress rehearsal open to the public. The rehearsal will be at the Riley Center for the Arts, located at Burr and Burton Academy, 143 Seminary Ave., Manchester.

• Saturday, June 30, 7:30 p.m.: The Festival Concert (also at the Riley Center at Burr and Burton Academy) begins with TM faculty-in-residence, Bulgarian violinist Joana Genova, violist Ariel Rudiakov, Belgian cellist Thomas Landschoot and critically acclaimed pianist Jon Klibonoff, performing Joaquin Turina’s evocative Quartet for Piano and Strings in A Minor. The Enso String Quartet will perform Mendelssohn's Quartet No. 2 in A Minor, op. 13. Following intermission, another special guest, percussionist Matthew Gold, artist associate at Williams College and member of the Talea Ensemble with Joana Genova and Jon Klibonoff, will change course musically with a piece by American composer Lou Harrison. Varied Trio blends Western and Eastern elements; the four short movements are scored for piano, violin and percussion. The concluding work will be Sir Edward Elgar's Introduction and Allegro - a grand and expressive composition for string orchestra with solo string quartet. Ariel Rudiakov will conduct an orchestra consisting of the Enso String Quartet, Taconic Music's faculty, guest artists, and CMI students.

• Sunday, July 1, at 4 p.m.: Taconic's NextGen Concert will be held at the Riley Center at Burr and Burton Academy, and will feature string quartets by Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky, Haydn, and Robert Schumann's Piano Quartet, all performed by CMI students.

Admission to masterclasses and open dress rehearsals is $10 at the door. Suggested donation for NextGen Concerts is $10 at the door; students and kids free. Admission to Festival concerts is $25 for adults, $10 for students and kids; advance purchase discount for adult admission is available. For information on concerts, tickets, and Taconic Music’s year-round programs, call 802-362-7162 or visit the website.


Tanglewood Music Festival

For most music lovers, Tanglewood in Lenox virtually defines music in the Berkshires. It is the largest summer concert presenter in America, with the most comprehensive schedule of performances across the full spectrum of musical styles and genres. Concertgoers eagerly anticipate two full months of music making, with superstar performers interpreting great music from across historical eras – much of it beloved favorites of audiences worldwide – in both popular and classical genres.

This week, music for string quartet kicks off Tanglewood's classical summer season with two performance-filled days. Dubbed a "String Quartet Marathon," it's a mini-festival within a festival.

• Saturday, June 30, 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 1, 2:30 p.m., all three performances in Ozawa Hall: Tanglewood presents their traditional String Quartet Marathon featuring string Fellows performing a wide-ranging sampling of individual string quartet movements from across the 250-year continuum of the string quartet repertoire.

• Monday, July 2, 8 p.m. in Ozawa Hall: Composer/conductor John Harbison leads his annual concert of Bach cantatas, featuring Tanglewood Music Center vocal and instrumental Fellows.

Admission to masterclasses and open dress rehearsals is $10 at the door. Entrance to Festival concerts is $25 for adults, $10 for students and children. Advance purchase discounts for adult admissions and season passes are also available. For information on concerts, tickets and Taconic Music’s year-round programs, call 802-362-7162 or visit online.

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