Sitka Summer Music Festival begins

The Sitka Summer Music Festival has begun. This festival is Alaska’s premiere classical music festival that presents music to the community. This four-week event brings together musicians to celebrate both Russian and American composers.

On Tuesday, June 6, at Stevenson Hall Susan Reed and guests looked to the week of concerts ahead. Reed provided insights into the works and performers to give context for this week’s concerts and events. Reed has been a principal keyboard player with the Anchorage Symphony Orchestra for over thirty years.

On Wednesday, June 7, at 6:30 p.m. in the lower level of the Mean Queen a Café Concert will be held. Experience chamber music the way it was originally performed at this free event. The musicians for this event will be; Kurt Nikkanen, an American violinist and international soloist who at age twelve gave his Carnegie Hall debut performing with the New York symphony; Scott Rawls, a soloist and chamber musician who has appeared in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Japan and Europe; and Zuill Bailey, one of the premiere cellists in the world, a soloist, recitalist, artistic director and teacher who has been featured with symphony orchestras worldwide, including Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco Israel, Cape Town, and the Bruchner Orchestra in Linz, Austria. Bailey has also appeared at the Disney Hall, the Kennedy Center, the United Nations, Alice Tully Hall, the 92nd St. Y and Carnegie Hall.

Bach’s Lunch will be on Thursday, June 8 at 12:15, in Allen Hall of the Odess Theater. The whole family is invited to bring their own lunch for this lunchtime concert series. Quiet, not crunchy food, is encouraged at this free event. The program is made up of Beethoven’s String Trio in G Major, Op. 9, No. 1 and Glazunov’s String Quintet in A major, Op. 39. The artists will be Nikkanen, Bailey, Rawls, and the Attacca Quartet who are the first prize winners in the 7th Osaka International Chamber Music Competition in 2011.

The first Evening Concert at Harrigan Centennial Hall will be on Friday, June 9, at 7:30 p.m. There will be a 30 minute pre-concert conversation at 6:45 p.m. Tickets are available on the Sitka Summer Music Festival’s website. John Corigliano’s Sonata for Violin and Piano and Tschaikovsky’s Piano Trio in A Minor, Op. 50 will make up this event’s program. The artists will be Nikkanen, Bailey, Natasha Paremski who has given recitals at London’s Wigmore Hall, the Auditorium du Louvre in Parais and also was the featured pianist in choreographer Benjamin Millepied’s Danse Concertantes at New York’s Joyce Theater; and Maria Asteriadou a chamber musician who has recorded the complete piano and string chamber works of Nikos Skalkottas with violinist George Demertis.

Another Evening Concert in Harrigan Centennial Hall will be performed on Saturday June 10 at 7:30 p.m. Shostakovich’s Piano Quintet in G Minor, Op. 57 and Tschaikovsky Sextet for Strings in D Minor, Op. 70 “Souvenir d’ Florence” make up this events program. The musicians are: Nikkanen, Bailey, Rawls, Asteriadou, and the Attacca Quartet.

A Family Concert will be held on June 11, at 3 p.m., at Sheet’ka Kwaan Naa Kahidi. The festival artists have planned a concert for all ages. The whole family is encouraged to attend an afternoon of free music with root beer floats to close the event. The program will be Beethoven’s Trio Excerpts, Docork’s “American” Quartet, Glazunov’s Quintet Excerpts and Tschaikovsky’s Sextet Excerpts. Artists Nikkanen, Bailey, Rawls and the Attacca Quartet will be performing.

On Tuesday, June 13, at 5:30 p.m. in Stevenson Hall, Susan Reed will be bringing in the next weeks Sitka Summer Music Festival Events with a look at upcoming events.

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