Tuesday, May 16, 2006

FESTIVALS://This summer in the US

An overview in the New York Times. Here's a selection

OJAI June 8-11. Osvaldo Golijov continues his triumphant progress through the country. The Atlanta Symphony and Robert Spano take to Ojai some of what they performed at the Golijov festival at Lincoln Center this season: "Ainadamar," "Ayre," "Oceana." Pieces by Cage, Nancarrow and Rzewski, as well as Brazilian jazz, round out the program.

ASPEN MUSIC FESTIVAL AND SCHOOL June 21-Aug. 20. In addition to Mozart and Shostakovich, Aspen's music director, David Zinman, leaps onto the birthday bandwagon. This festival celebrates his 70th with a new cello concerto by Kevin Puts, played by Yo-Yo Ma. Christopher Rouse and Marc-André Dalbavie further represent contemporary composers, and minifestivals focus on the lives of past ones, like Shostakovich and Britten.

OPERA THEATER OF ST. LOUIS Saturday-June 25. Opera in English is St. Louis's trademark and, to a lesser degree, English opera. This summer at least offers the American premiere of "Jane Eyre," by Michael Berkeley. Another composer who obligingly wrote in English was Kurt Weill in "Street Scene"; but "The Barber of Seville" and "Hansel and Gretel" will be sung, of course, in translation.

MONADNOCK MUSIC July 13-Aug. 25. Subversion hits rural New England; this festival, which has quietly fostered former unknowns like Peter Sellars and Frederick Rzewski, is celebrating its 40th anniversary with a program that includes a focus on Elliott Carter; the requisite Mozart celebration with the pianist Konstantin Lifschitz and others; a pair of deliberately genre-defying concerts; and Schumann programs with Russell Sherman and James Maddalena.

SANTA FE CHAMBER MUSIC FESTIVAL July 16-Aug. 21. Premieres by Magnus Lindberg (a young lion) and Leon Kirchner (an older one), and an installation and piece by David Lang, will be the news for some. For others, highlights will include recitals by the sitar player Anoushka Shankar, the pianist Jonathan Biss or the Shanghai Quartet. The repertory ranges from Bach to Michael Tilson Thomas.

SANTA FE OPERA June 30-Aug. 26. Some luminaries are testing their orbits in Santa Fe's firmament this summer. Anne Sofie von Otter takes on the heavy role of Carmen, which she interpreted to tremendous effect at Glyndebourne; Natalie Dessay is switching from the Queen of the Night in "The Magic Flute" to her first Pamina. Alan Gilbert, the company's music director, conducts two operas, including Thomas Adès's provocative "Tempest" (remember when Santa Fe commissioned John Eaton's version in 1985?); and the estimable John Fiore leads "Salome." The fifth opera is Massenet's "Cinderella."

LINCOLN CENTER FESTIVAL July 10-30. Music, theater and dance lead the way in the 10th season of this internationally minded festival. "Grendel," the first opera by Elliot Goldenthal (directed by his wife, Julie Taymor), arrives here fresh from its premiere in Los Angeles, with Denyce Graves as the Dragon and Eric Owens as Grendel, and choreography by Angelin Preljocaj. Two other brand-new works bear jawbreaking titles: "Eraritjaritjaka" by the Austrian composer Heiner Goebbels and "Ramakien: A Rak Opera" by leading Thai pop and rock musicians.

MOSTLY MOZART FESTIVAL July 28-Aug. 26. It's hard to believe that it has been 40 years, or 250 for that matter. The 250 are the years Mozart has been with us; the 40 the age of the festival bearing his name at Lincoln Center, which has managed in recent years to keep reinventing itself. New commissions this summer include the premieres of a dance by Mark Morris, a violin concerto by Magnus Lindberg and a staging of the unfinished Mozart opera "Zaide" by Peter Sellars; another highlight is "Idomeneo," conducted by William Christie.

CARAMOOR INTERNATIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL Katonah, June 24-Aug. 12. If there's one event not to miss in the New York area this summer, it is the Polish contralto Ewa Podles as Rossini's Tancredi. Will Crutchfield's Bel Canto at Caramoor lives up to its name this year; the other opera is Bellini's "Puritani," with Sumi Jo. Michael Barrett, the festival's director, continues to up the ante across the board: Caramoor has a composer in residence, John Musto; it continues its Extreme Chamber Music series; and it still presents the Orchestra of St. Luke's.

GLIMMERGLASS OPERA Cooperstown, July 7-Aug. 29. Here's a mixed season for you: a premiere by the estimable Stephen Hartke, "The Greater Good," as well as Janacek's "Jenufa," Rossini's "Barber of Seville" and Gilbert and Sullivan's "Pirates of Penzance." This is a glass half empty or half full, whichever way your taste happens to skew.

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