Rare Rossini and Hot Jazz at Caramoor

Photo by Gabe Palacio

By Mark McLaren, ZEALnyc Editor in Chief, July 15, 2016

Let's talk about Caramoor.

I have spent many a night lying on the lawn of Tanglewood, the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, swilling white wine under a starry Berkshire's sky and listening to world-class music. Like any good New Englander, change does not come easily and I didn't imagine that this experience could be replicated - anywhere. That is until I discovered Caramoor.

Come to find out, New Yorkers don't have to travel three hours for an idyllic combination of music, setting, and stars. Caramoor, New York's premier summer music festival, offers everything that is enjoyed at Tanglewood - world-class music with some of the world's leading performers, a stunning physical environment, and of course, beautiful night skies - and all without the Berkshires commute. Caramoor Music Festival (with programming this summer from mid-June through the end of August) resides at the historic Westchester Rosen estate in Katonah, NY, just sixty minutes (fifty miles) from Manhattan by car or public transportation. This short commute offers a thrilling payoff.

Soprano Georgia Jarman sings Zenobia in Rossini's Aureliano in Palmira, Photo provided by Caramoor.

Caramoor is the summer home of New York City's Orchestra of St. Luke's, which anchors much of its programming. It also hosts the Bel Canto Young Artists program, and in conjunction with these two institutions, this weekend Caramoor presents an exciting production of Rossini's rarely-performed work Aureliano in Palmira. Tenor Andrew Owens and sopranos Georgia Jarman and Tamara Mumford (who appears at the Met this season in Anna Bolena) sing in this early Rossini work that has been rarely heard since its 1813 La Scalla premier. Caramoor's Director of Opera Will Crutchfield has been instrumental in reassembling the score which was 'shred' by the composer after its initial rocky debut. This is a fine cast in a performance of a lost bel canto work that could enter the standard repertoire of opera houses. Go to Caramoor and be the first to rediscover.

Pacifica Quartet, Photo provided by Caramoor.

Also at Carmoor next week, Pacifica Quartet returns with an interesting chamber music program that includes two Beethoven works and a piece by Shulamit Ran, String Quartet No. 3: Glitter, Shards, Doom, Memory. Pacifica Quartet is known for daring repertoire and its exuberant performance style. The ensemble has been in residence at NYC's 92nd Street Y and Boston's Isabella Steward Gardner Museum.

And later in the week, Caramoor's Bel Canto Young Artists program offers Beethoven in Song, a look at Beethoven's vocal output and a preview of Caramoor's concert production of Fidelio.

Chick Corea Trio, Photo provided by Caramoor.

Caramoor hosts an important day of jazz each summer, and on Saturday July 23rd, the Chick Corea Trio anchors the Caramoor Jazz Festival with his show, "75 Years of Jazz Piano" at 8pm. Corea is joined by Christian McBride and Brian Blade. Earlier in the day (gates open at 11am) Catherine Russell, Brianna Thomas and Charanée Wade sing blues. Caramoor Jazz Festival is particularly know for spotting up and comers, and this year feature trumpeter Etienne Charles and his Creole Soul Band, saxophonist Bria Skonberg, harpist Brandee Younger, and the Harlem Stride Piano Hour.

Tickets for Caramoor Jazz Festival are available here in ZEALnyc's Shop.

Pianist Jeremy Denk appears at Caramoor on Sunday, July 24th. Tickets are available here in ZEALnyc's Shop.

Caramoor has made commuting from NYC simple - and offers free shuttle service from the Katonah Metro North Station to the Rosen Estate before and after all concerts. Click here for more information on getting to Caramoor.

Click here for an overview of summer Jazz Festivals.

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