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Director’s Welcome

POPPaul Hawkshaw

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It is hard to believe that it is already time to announce our 2014 Season. We really have some great music for you this year.

Our opening gala this year will be Saturday, June 14, when we celebrate the 75th anniversary of the passing of our patroness, Ellen Battell Stoeckel, with big-band music and dancing from the 1930s and 40s. We will decorate the Music Shed, bring in some tables, and turn the entire space into a 1930s style dance hall for the evening — complete with wine and hors d'oeuvres.

We are especially pleased to welcome the Brentano Quartet to their first season in residence at Norfolk. On Friday, July 18, they will perform the Shostakovich Piano Quintet with Boris Berman and, on Saturday, July 19, they will present their signature piece Beethoven's String quartet in C sharp minor, Op. 131. The Artis and Emerson Quartets are returning, and the Leschetizky Trio (you will remember their fantastic Schubert from two years ago) will perform a delightful program of Schubert and Viennese dance music. Many of our favorite artists are also coming back: Richard Stoltzman, Bill Purvis, Frank Morelli, Ani Kavafian, Wei-Yi Yang, Ettore Causa, David Shifrin, Carol Wincenc and Peter Frankl. And on Friday, August 15, the world-renowned Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra will make a rare east-coast appearance in the Music Shed. Few festivals in the world can offer such variety and quality.

You can see the complete program online. Tickets and Subscriptions can be ordered by calling 203.432.1966. You can hear the latest news and follow us for the entire summer on Facebook and Twitter.

Before closing, I want to ask, if you have not done so already, please consider making a gift to our Music Shed Restoration Fund. An anonymous donor has made a 2:1 challenge grant of $1,000,000 toward the restoration of that historic building. As of this writing we still need to raise about 500,000 to obtain the match. Renowned preservation architect, John G. Waite, has been engaged to oversee the restoration project, and world famous acoustician R. Lawrence Kirkegaard will serve as consultant.

I want to say thank you to our donors and subscribers for your loyal support. The Festival would not exist without you, and we are grateful. Please feel free to call or email if you have any questions.

I cannot tell you how excited we are about the summer. I sincerely hope you will find the programs both stimulating and entertaining. Most of all I look forward to joining you for a few evenings of Music Among Friends.

Paul Hawkshaw,
February, 2014.

Ps. If you are an applicant wondering about audition results, we will be in touch by the middle of March.