Music Mountain Presents Harlem String Quartet With Fei-Fei Dong and Swingtime Big Band

Music Mountain Presents Harlem String Quartet With Fei-Fei Dong and Swingtime Big Band

Music Mountain, America's longest running summer chamber music festival, continues its outstanding 89th season with two returning favorites! Grammy Award winning Harlem String Quartet performs Beethoven, Schubert and Brahms on Sunday, July 29 (3pm). Swingtime Big Band is back on Saturday, July 28 (6:30pm) to thrill audiences with authentic recreations of the timeless music of the swing era! Concerts are scheduled through September 23.

The superb Harlem Quartet returns for another riveting collaboration with pianist Fei-Fei Dong on Sunday afternoon, to include Beethoven: Piano Quartet #1 in E Flat Major, WoO 36 - a Music Mountain debut! Plus Schubert: String Quartet in A Minor, Op. 29 #1, D.804 "Rosamunde;" and Brahms: Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34.

New York-based Harlem Quartet, currently serving a three-year residency at London's Royal College of Music, has been praised for its "panache" by The New York Times and hailed in the Cincinnati Enquirer for "bringing a new attitude to classical music, one that is fresh, bracing and intelligent." Since its public debut at Carnegie Hall in 2006, the quartet has thrilled audiences in 47 states as well as in the U.K., France, Belgium, Brazil, Panama, Canada, Venezuela, and South Africa. Harlem Quartet's mission is to advance diversity in classical music, engaging young and new audiences through the discovery and presentation of varied repertoire that includes works by minority composers. Passion for this work has made the quartet a leading ensemble in both educational and community engagement performances. Harlem Quartet was founded in 2006 by The Sphinx Organization, a national nonprofit dedicated to building diversity in classical music and providing access to music education in under-served communities.

Praised for her "bountiful gifts and passionate immersion into the music she touches" (The Plain Dealer), Chinese pianist Fei-Fei Dong is a winner of the Concert Artists Guild Competition and a top finalist at the 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. She continues to build a reputation for her poetic interpretations, charming audiences with her "passion, piquancy and tenderness" and "winning stage presence" (Dallas Morning News). Her burgeoning career includes a number of prominent concerto engagements, recital performances, and summer festivals. Deeply committed to sharing her joy for music and connecting with communities, Fei-Fei Dong also engages students and community audiences through frequent school and outreach concerts and master classes.

Audience-favorite Swingtime Big Band will bring its joyous music to Falls Village on Saturday evening. Dedicated to the performance of America's greatest popular standards, Swingtime Big Band is a 20-piece authentic swing band comprised of master interpreters of music from the Swing Era (mid-1930's through early 1950's). Described by The New York Times as "musicians who make the sounds of the pre-rock era rock," the ensemble specializes in performing original arrangements of Big Band classics from the Great American Songbook, bringing to life both the style and the spirit of this music for 21st century audiences to experience in living color. Swingtime Big Band features female vocalist Bobbie Ruth and male vocalist Jerry Costanzo. Leading the band is saxophonist and artistic director Steve Shaiman, a passionate advocate of Big Band swing for his entire musical life. Don't forget your dancing shoes!

The Saturday Evening Twilight Series features pre-concert dinners at the charming Falls Village Inn. Experience a piece of history built over 175 years ago that helped shape the history of Falls Village.

Music Mountain is located in Falls Village, Connecticut, on Music Mountain Road, where a short scenic drive will bring you to Gordon Hall atop Music Mountain. Free parking and picnic facilities are available. Music Mountain is supported, in part, by the Connecticut Commission On Culture & Tourism and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Chamber music concerts continue with Avalon String Quartet with Soyeon Kate Lee, piano (August 5); Amernet String Quartet with Chauncey Patterson, viola and Ronald Thomas, cello (August 12); St. Petersburg Piano Quartet (August 19); and Cassatt String Quartet with Paul Katz, cello (August 26).

The Saturday Evening Twilight Series continues with Jimmy Greene Quartet (August 4); Galvanized Jazz Band (August 11); Josh Lawrence & Color Theory (August 18); and Amina Figarova Quintet (August 25).

Specially Priced Concerts include: Labor Day Benefit Concert & Reception on Sunday, September 2. All tickets $75. Special Concert & Wine Reception to Celebrate the Completion of the Beethoven Quartet Cycle on Sunday, September 9. All tickets: $60.

Regularly scheduled Chamber Music Concerts are $35. Twilight Series Concerts are $30. Concert & Dinner Passes are available for all Twilight Series Concerts for $70; includes Pre-Concert Dinner (5pm) at The Falls Village Inn, a Litchfield County landmark - Classic American comfort fare, seasonal - and 6:30pm Twilight Concert at Music Mountain. Dinner reservations must be made no later than the Friday prior to concert date by calling the Music Mountain box office at 860-824-7126.

Children ages 5-18 are admitted FREE to ALL CONCERTS when accompanied by a ticket holder. Saturday evening Twilight Concerts are at 6:30 pm. Sunday afternoon Chamber Music concerts are at 3 pm. Discounts apply through participating organizations. For a complete summer schedule, special ticket prices, and to download a ticket order form visit musicmountain.org or call (860) 824-7126.

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