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July 4, 2013

Honest Brook Music Festival to celebrate 25th anniversary

Cooperstown Crier


The Honest Brook Music Festival announced its 25th anniversary summer season of classical concerts on Honest Brook Road in Meredith.

This summer, the festival has re-engaged its most important artists from the festival’s first 25 years, presenters said in a media release. During those years, Honest Brook has presented many young artists who have become world-renowned, among them some of the artists who will be performing this summer.

The season will open at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 13, with the Shanghai String Quartet performing a program of Beethoven, Bartok and Smetana.

The quartet gave its first HBMF performance in 1997. This season marks its fifth appearance.

The Shanghai Quartet has become one of the world’s foremost chamber ensembles. Its melds Eastern and Western styles, using traditional Chinese folk music and masterpieces of Western music to contemporary works.

The Shanghai Quartet is Quartet-in-Residence at Montclair State University in New Jersey, Ensemble-in-Residence with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, and visiting guest professors of the Shanghai Conservatory and the Central Conservatory in Beijing.

On Saturday, July 20, at 8 p.m., pianist Michael Cannon, the Festival’s co-founder and artistic director, will perform a program of Russian and French music by Tchaikovsky, Debussy, Ravel and Scriabin.

Cannon has performed as recitalist and soloist with orchestras in such major capitals as London, Amsterdam, The Hague, Berlin, Frankfurt and Vienna. He has participated in many music festivals, including the Aspen Music Festival in Aspen, Colo., Festival Tibor Varga in Switzerland and Festival Soirees de Normandie in France.

The season will continue at 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug 4, with the Jupiter String Quartet performing a program of Haydn, Britten and Dvorak. In addition to performing, the Jupiter, which was formed in 2001, has joined the faculty of the University of Illinois as String Quartet-in-Residence. It also holds visiting faculty residencies at Oberlin Conservatory and Adelphi University, and has engaged in a multi-year residency at Atlanta’s Spivey Hall. The quartet gave its first performance at the Honest Brook Music Festival in 2003. In June 2004, the festival presented the Jupiter in its New York debut at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall and again that summer in the festival barn. This season marks its sixth festival performance.

The 25th season will close at 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 11, with the Laredo-Robinson Duo and special guest pianist Chih-Yi Chen in a program of Beethoven, Ravel and Franck.

The storybook romance of the Bolivian-born violinist Jaime Laredo and American cellist Sharon Robinson has, over the past 35 years, been expressed in many facets of their lives. In 2012, the husband-wife team joined the instrumental and chamber music faculty of the Cleveland Institute of Music. They have taught at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University since 2005.

The Laredo-Robinson Duo gave its first performance at The Honest Brook Music Festival in 2006. This season marks the duo’s third appearance at the festival.

Internationally active as a soloist, collaborative pianist, and chamber musician, Chen specializes in collaborative repertoire for piano and strings, and in coaching string players. She has performed in concerts throughout the United States, Europe, Japan and Taiwan and was a soloist with Taipei Symphony Orchestra under conductor Irwin Hoffman.

Honest Brook Music Festival concerts are presented in a preserved dairy barn in the former dairy capital of New York state. The festival is held on Honest Brook Road, off Route 28 north of Delhi.

Season subscriptions are available for $85, single tickets are $25 and students are admitted free.

For more information, visit, email, or call 746-3770. Reservations may be made by phone.