A Partially Stringed Quartet
It’s never too early to start making plans for this coming summer’s music festivals be it Jazzfest, Bluesfest or Folkfest. Be careful, however, since these festivals can be deceiving featuring a wide variety of acts often straying from the supposed musical theme. More often than not, the headliners are rock, country or hip hop artists.
This year it appears that even Chamberfest has decided to stretch the limits of its classical genre as evidenced by the following leaked excerpts from this year’s brochure:
July 5–7 P.M.: Regional Arts Center
LED ZEPPELIN — Long a favorite of classical music lovers, this partially-stringed quartet has been around almost as long as Bach and Handel themselves. Known for their contrapuntal compositions such as “Stairway to Heaven” and “Good Times, Bad Times”, Led Zeppelin will assuredly be a crowd pleaser. Tickets for this premiere performance will go fast so don’t be “dazed and confused” and pre-order yours today. Remember, the smoking of any substance is strictly prohibited at all Chamberfest venues.
July 7–8 P.M.: First Presbyterian Church
BOB DYLAN — In keeping with Chamberfest’s penchant for troubadours, the organizers are pleased to announce that the well-known minstrel Bob Dylan will be performing this year. Noted for his skill on the modern lute and mouth harp, Mr. Dylan’s engaging vocals will no doubt charm festival-goers as he weaves his rambling tales of loss and love. Rumors abound that he will be giving an electrifying performance amplified by modern technology. If so, we urge you to “don’t think twice” and buy your tickets anyway.
July 8–5:30 P.M.: St. Michael’s Cathedral
THE ROLLING STONES — When it comes to classical music, there’s nothing more classical than classic rock. And when it comes to classic rock, there’s no quintet more appealing than The Rolling Stones. Led by the aging duo of Messrs. Jagger and Richards, this well-respected ensemble melds traditional forms with modern melodies to produce a sound not likely heard before in this particular setting. If you are unable to get tickets for headliners such as Frederica von Stade and the Kronos Quartet, remember that “you can’t always get what you want” but that this post-Renaissance group will assuredly still provide you with lots of musical “satisfaction.”
July 11–3:30 P.M.: Fairlawn Theater
NEIL YOUNG — Always a difficult voice to categorize, Neil Young will perform a number of memorable entries from his esteemed songbook. Neither soprano nor alto nor castrato, Mr. Young’s voice has been variously described as “a unique contralto”, “a daring falsetto” and “an aging cat in heat.” Listen and decide for yourself as he sings his classic works backed by his reunited dissonant garage ensemble Crazy Horse. At 75, this “old man” will surprise you with his classical chops and have you saying “long may he run.”
July 12–7:30 P.M.: University Auditorium
CHER — If you could turn back time or truly believe in life after love, you’ll want to experience the baroque stylings of famed soloist Cher. This accomplished singer has gone through a number of transformations through the years, both artistic and physical. Accompanied by a robotic voice synthesizer and an all-male dance troupe, Cher’s operatic treatment of both nocturnes and rondos such as “I Got You Babe” and “The Beat Goes On” will enchant even the most discerning of audiences. According to Cher’s publicist, this concert will be part of her fifteenth farewell tour.
July 15–5 P.M.: Knox Presbyterian Church
EMINEM — In a slight departure for Chamberfest, the organizers have engaged the services of a well-known spoken word poet. Marshall Mathers, also known as Eminem, will employ his unique recitative style in the performance of toneless requiems and cadenzas. Some have characterized his musical mode as a modern cantabile although he prefers to call it “rap.” English captioning of Mr. Mathers’ lyrics will be projected on a screen for the hard of hearing and the culturally impaired.