Jazz tango played by Buenos Aires musicians? BodyVox performers dancing to Prokofiev? The entire cycle of Beethoven’s string quartets performed by some of the country’s best quartets? With more than 50 concerts offered over five weeks, the possibilities at Chamber Music Northwest’s Summer Festival are nigh on endless—and maybe a little overwhelming. There’s the New@noon series, highlighting contemporary melodies by living composers, not to mention Casual Wednesdays, with chamber music performed by Protégé Project members. And yeah, those string quartets, which the festival’s artistic director David Shifrin calls “one of the crowning achievements of human civilization,"
The options are myriad, so we asked Oregon Symphony violinist and Third Angle artistic director Ron Blessinger to share his top CMNW Summer fest picks.
Which concerts will you make sure to catch this year?
I applaud Chamber Music Northwest’s effort to commission new musical work. This summer I look forward to seeing new works by Richard Danielpour and PDX composer Bryan Johanson, as well as Andy Akiho.
What’s one series you’re curious about?
I’m eager to see how the New@Noon series will work. We’ve had good success at Third Angle with this smaller format, and I’m eager to see how this works for CMNW.
Who are you excited to hear play at the festival?
The Emerson Quartet is always an occasion that is not to be missed. Andy Akiho’s show at the Alberta Rose Theatre will also be very cool. Cool venue, great musician.