Search:
05
Jun-2015

Mezzo-soprano among fresh talent at Bar Harbor Fest

Baritone Chad Sloane and pianist Clara Chowning will perform the festival’s opening Tea Concert at 4 p.m. Sunday, June 28, at the Maine Sea Coast Mission in Bar Harbor.

Founding artistic director Francis Fortier has discovered new musicians to enrich the 2015 Bar Harbor Music Festival held in singular settings scattered across this coastal town.

The concert venues vary from a restored art deco movie theater to a rustic, open-air amphitheatre within Acadia National Park.

In its 49th season, the Bar Harbor Festival runs from June 28 through July 26. This year’s month-long program includes mezzo-soprano Laura Krumm, who played the role of Martha in the world premiere of Nolan Gasser’s “The Secret Garden” for the San Francisco Opera Center, earlier this year covered (was an understudy) for the part of Jan Arnold in British composer Joby Talbot’s “Everest” for The Dallas Opera.

“It’s a festival in the true sense,” the artistic director continued, noting the month-long series of concerts ranges from opera and chamber music to pop and jazz.

“We have something for everyone; no one else is doing that,” Fortier said.

Cellist Clara Yang will perform with the Bar Harbor Festival String Orchestra. She made her concerto debut at age 12 with South Korea’s Dong-A University Orchestra under the baton of her grandfather Jong-Gu Bae.

Cellist Clara Yang will perform with the Bar Harbor Festival String Orchestra. She made her concerto debut at age 12 with South Korea’s Dong-A University Orchestra under the baton of her grandfather Jong-Gu Bae.

Founded in 1966, the festival has advanced the careers of more than 1,800 aspiring instrumentalists, singers and composers.

“The mission of the festival is to develop the careers of up-and-coming artists,” said Fortier, who made his European debut as a violinist at the 1966 Bath Festival in England.

Other festival first-timers include Boston-based baritone Andy Papas. Known for his rich voice and comic timing, he sang the parts of the Major General in Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Pirates of Penzance” and Ko-Ko in “The Mikado” in recent years for Opera Providence.

Matthew Curran, who earned his master’s degree at Indiana University of Music, is a versatile musician. He has performed standard opera roles such as Sarastro, Raimondo and Figaro as well as parts in more contemporary operas such as Benjamin Britten’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and Lowell Lieberman’s “Picture of Dorian Gray.”

Mezzo-soprano Alice-Anne Light has performed the roles of Oberon in Benjamin Britten’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and Madame de la Haultiere in “Cendrillon.”

This year, soaring trees provide the backdrop for the string orchestra that will perform at the Blackwoods Campground Amphitheater in Acadia. Low benches will serve as seating.

“There is an outpouring of emotions with sound bouncing off the trees” Fortier related.

Fortier says he learned the importance of concert settings from his own musical mentor. He studied under the great conductor and violinist Yehudi Menuhin at the Bath International Music in England.

“There is beauty and simplicity in each venue,” he said, referring to the Bar Harbor Festival. “I religiously follow the code, beauty must match beauty.”

Sounds of summer

When: The Bar Harbor Music Festival runs from June 28 to July 26.

Where: At different venues throughout Bar Harbor

How much: Tickets for most concerts cost $25 per person. For jazz and gala concerts, the cost is $45 per person. In both cases, student tickets are $15.

Contact: 288-5744, www.barharbormusicfestival.org

Amanat Khullar is a sports reporter for the Mount Desert Islander. She comes from New Delhi, the capital city of India and graduated from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.