News From Britt Hill, February 2014 – by Donna Briggs, Britt Executive Director

Our 2014 Classical Festival announcement in January was an exciting one, as our new Music Director Teddy Abrams announced the full lineup of programs and guest artists for the concerts this August.

This season is full of great music, exciting soloists, and fun events. It will include beloved masterworks like Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, Dvorak’s “New World” Symphony and Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. You’ll also find fresh music on the lineup. Banjo virtuoso Bela Fleck will join the Britt Orchestra on August 9 for the Banjo Concerto he wrote. The wonderfully-talented and charismatic vocalist Storm Large (who you’ll remember from her performance with Pink Martini last summer) will join the orchestra for Kurt Weill’s Seven Deadly Sins on August 15.

On August 8, we’ll see a return appearance by violinist Augustin Hadelich, who was one of our audience’s favorites last summer. Augustin will perform the beloved Sibelius Violin Concerto.

The popular Symphony Pops concert returns on August 16. The innovative trio Time for Three, who wowed Britt audiences in 2010, will be featured throughout the concert. The Symphony Pops concert is a great night to bring a group to Britt, as lawn tickets are just $5. Also, while Time for Three is in town, the group will join the community for a four-day residency, full of performances, workshops and more.

During the 2014 Classical Festival, we’re also introducing a few new traditions. The Champagne Picnic returns, but with a fun new twist: the picnic will feature a fresh menu from the Jacksonville Inn, and we’re hosting a contest for patrons to show off their most imaginative table setting (including tableware, flowers, displays and more). The winner will be chosen by a panel of judges, including our new Music Director, and the winner will receive a Classical Festival lawn pass for 2015!

Maestro Abrams also announced a new tradition of an all-orchestral night (with no soloist) on closing night. Now, Closing Night will be a night to celebrate the talents of our Britt Orchestra. The evening (and the 2014 Classical Festival) closes with Mahler’s grand First Symphony.

The Classical Festival remains the heart of Britt. If you are already a fan of Britt Classical, I look forward to seeing you on the hill this summer. If you are new to the Britt Orchestra, or to Classical music in general, I encourage you to make this year the time you give it a try. There’s no better place to enjoy the sounds of a wonderful orchestra than our scenic Britt hill. Check out the full list of dates and programs on our web site at Tickets are available now to both members and non-members.

We’re moving full steam ahead in planning the summer. The full season schedule will be announced the evening of Wednesday, April 9.

Posted January 28, 2014