Piano Man Performs, Pops on Tap

The Bar Harbor Music Festival continues this weekend with a performance by pianist Christopher Johnson and the festival’s annual pops concert.

On Friday, July 10, at 8:15 p.m., Mr. Johnson will perform his annual recital at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church, with music by Beethoven, Debussy, Liszt, Edmund Cionek’s “Boogie,” Mozart, and Ravel.

Donald Palladino, of the The Westfield (N.J.) Leader, has written of Mr. Johnson, “To hear Christopher Johnson now, on the cusp of a great career, is to believe. Possessing a Van Cliburn intensity, he deserves to have the career of a true musical star.”

The festival’s annual pops concert is set for Sunday, July 12, at 8:15 p.m. at the Bar Harbor Regency Holiday Inn/Stone House. The show, “Wine, Women, and Song” will feature soprano Amy Mahoney, baritone Ryan Taylor, mezzo soprano Fenlon Lamb, guitarist Wes Yokum and bassist Allan Santos, performing the music of Nina Simone, Irving Berlin, Joni Mitchell, Cole Porter, and Rogers & Hammerstein.

An optional pre-concert dinner will be served beginning at 6 p.m. in the Regency’s Edenfield Dining Room.

Continuing into the week, the 26th annual New Composers Concert is scheduled for Wednesday, July 15 at 8:15 p.m. at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church and will introduce “Eight Strings and A Whistle” to festival audiences in a program called “Five Facets” that includes world premieres by the American composers Douglas Anderson and William Dickerson.

Prior to the concert, composer Edmund Cionek will be the moderator of the 13th annual New Composers Forum on Tuesday, July 14, 5:30 p.m. at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church. The topic is “Five Facts.” Admission is by voluntary contribution. Both the forum and the New Composers Concert are made possible in part by a grant from the Maine Humanities Council and the Maine Arts Commission, as well as a grant from the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University.

The Bar Harbor Music Festival Opera Theatre will present “The Elixir of Love” directed by Fenlon Lamb on Thursday, July 16, at the Criterion Theatre. Curtain time is 8:15 p.m. Donizetti’s romantic comedy opera will feature stars from the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, Seattle Opera, and Wolftrap. Soprano Angela Gilbert, a smashing success in the Festival’s 2007 production of “La Traviata,” will headline the cast as Adina. The chorus will be members of the Mount Desert Summer Chorale under director David Schildkret. The music director will be pianist Cara Chowning of the Cleveland Opera.

For tickets and information contact: the Bar Harbor Music Festival at 288-5744. Tickets also are available in Bar Harbor at Testa’s Restaurant and The Bar Harbor Inn Gift Shop.

For more arts & entertainment news, pick up a copy of the Mount Desert Islander.


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