Welcome to our 46th season! Thanks to all of you, we had a very successful 45th anniversary season last summer, and I am truly grateful to our loyal audience members who filled the theater to welcome our performers with such warmth and openness. As a performer, I know how important and fulfilling it is to feel that energy and connection with the audience. We also thank our devoted sponsors, donors, advertisers, Trustees and volunteers for their support.
We have been extremely busy gearing up for another stellar season of glorious music. We will feature our usual sublime chamber music repertoire in each program – Brahms Piano Quintet and Horn Trio, Schumann Piano Quartet, Mozart Clarinet Quintet, and Dvorak Piano Quintet – combined with many superb but lesser known works by Hummel, Arensky, Saint-Saens, Poulenc, Rachmaninoff, Kodaly, Villa-Lobos, and Rorem.
We will be remembering the 100th anniversary of the death of Debussy with his three important late works – the Violin Sonata, Cello Sonata, and the Sonata for Flute, Viola and Harp. In addition, we will acknowledge the 150th anniversary of Rossini’s death with his jubilant Sonata for Strings and celebrate Leonard Bernstein’s 100th birth year with a performance of his brilliant Clarinet Sonata. I am sure you will be as excited about this 2018 season as I am! I hope you plan to come to all five concerts as I am confident that you will love each program.
You will be happy to know that most of our longtime artists will be returning, along with several dynamic new performers. I am thrilled that one of the Festival’s favorite violinists, Timothy Lees will be back again. We also welcome other world-class artists – harpist Stacey Shames, violinists Catherine Cho, violists Catharine Lees and Todd Phillips, and cellists Ani Kalayjian and Ronald Thomas – as they make their first appearances with the Festival. Also, for the first time, we will partner with Chestnut Hill Concerts, a festival in its 49th season in Connecticut, and our last concert will be repeated in Old Saybrook, CT in collaboration with that distinguished festival.
This summer we shall continue to expand our community outreach programs: Healing through Music (designed to bring beautiful music to patients, staff and volunteers in nearby medical facilities in Bridgton, Falmouth, South Paris, Norway and Auburn) and Discover the Joy of Classical Music (an hour-long free concert for families held in intimate venues in Bridgton and Auburn). We also look forward to our annual repeat performance in Chebeague Island, and we hope to be part of Bridgton’s 250th anniversary celebration. Not only will we continue to bring world-class concerts to our audience, we are committed to enriching the lives of everyone within our community with the vitality of live music.
For the artists who have performed at the Festival, a crucial part of their experience has been the chance to share their talent and commitment with our devoted audience through the power of music. This is the enriching experience we feel privileged to be part of, and we are all grateful to be part of this wonderful musical community.
We urge you to check our website for more details, such as full bios of the artists as well as information on how to donate to the Festival. We invite you to “like” us on Facebook and ask you to spread the word about the Festival to your friends. Please note that by purchasing a season ticket (for all five concerts), you will receive many benefits, including a savings on tickets, invitations to open rehearsals and post-concert reception to meet-and-greet the musicians.
I look forward to seeing you this summer!