The Bar Harbor Music Festival is back for its 56th season

BAR HARBOR – Founded in 1967 by violinist and bandleader Francis Fortier, the Bar Harbor Music Festival will celebrate its 56e season from June 26 to July 24. Performances are in Bar Harbor: solo recitals, chamber music, “Pops”, “New Composers”, opera, jazz, 2-string orchestra concerts and a “New Composer” forum; as well as six free Young Audience Concerts. In Belfast: three piano recitals and a flute chamber music concert.

Wednesday, June 29 7:30 p.m. BRASS VENTURE returns for opening night at the Criterion Theater with special guests Eric Ewazen, composer, and musicians from the MDIHS Music Department. The program is packed with classic brass pieces by Bach, Brahms, Bernstein, Sousa and Puccini, as well as Eric Ewazen’s ‘Acadia’ Suite and Gabrieli’s ‘Canzona’ with MDIHS brass. This collaboration is made possible in part by grants from the Onion Foundation and the Margaret Burnham Charitable Trust.

Friday, July 1 at 7:30 p.m. Pianist Matthew Graybil makes his Festival debut at the Criterion Theatre. “One of the most sensitive and poetic young pianists” – Fanfare Magazine. Program of music by Chopin, Liszt, Rameau, Beethoven and Stravinsky.

On Saturday, July 2 at 7:30 p.m., Festival favorite pianist Christopher Johnson will give a solo piano recital at the Criterion Theatre. Works by Beethoven, Rachmaninoff, Gershwin, Chopin, Liszt and a world premiere by Deborah Fortier. Johnson is the recent winner of the first Josef Lhevinne Prize awarded to a pianist “possessing brilliant technique combined with profound musical understanding”.

Tuesday, July 5 at 10:30 a.m. The first Young Audience Concert of the Festival will take place at the Criterion, with “Willie was Different” by Norman Rockwell and music for flute, clarinet and piano. Allison Kiger, flute, Eric Thomas, clarinet, Christina Spurling, piano, with narrator Reed Muise of Blue Hill. All Young Audience concerts are FREE to the public thanks in part to grants from the Onion Foundation and the Margaret Burnham Charitable Trust.

Tuesday, July 5 at 7:30 p.m. “A lovely flutist” – New Jersey Classical, Allison Kiger will take the stage at the 1932 Criterion Theater for a program of music by the great Ludwig van Beethoven. She is joined by Beethoven expert Christopher Johnson on piano for the Sonata in F major, Op. 17, National Airs and Variations, Op. 105, movements from Symphonies Nos. 5 and 7, and the Serenade for flute, violin and viola op. 25 with Concetta Abbate, violin, and Stan Renard, viola. Also on the program is La Bohème Fantaisie for flute and piano, giving audiences a taste of Puccini’s melodies for the Festival’s opera production La Bohème on July 15.

Wednesday, July 6 at 5:30 p.m. on the 26the The annual Forum of “new composers” will take place at the Saint-Sauveur Episcopal Church. Composer Anna-Louise Walton moderates the panel on “Composers as Artists of Time, including a Q&A session with the audience. Musicians Daniel Pyle, Eric Thomas, Skip La Plante and Allison Kiger will also preview the New Composers concert. This hour-long event is FREE to the public thanks in part to a grant from the Alice M. Ditson Fund at Columbia University.

Thursday, July 7 at 10:30 a.m. Young Audience Concert #2 Award-winning composer and music educator Skip La Plante leads an instrument-making workshop under the outdoor tent of the Jesup Memorial Library Thursday, July 7 at 10:30 a.m. Free for children of all ages.

Friday July 8 at 7:30 p.m. Le 38e The annual “New Composers” concert at St. Savior Episcopal Church will feature organist Daniel Pyle in solo and chamber works, including three world premieres by Anna-Louise Walton, Skip La Plante and Eric Thomas, with Allison Kiger, flute and Laurie Bennett, vocals. Alex Ross of The New York Times described La Plante’s music as “sounds of hauntingly beautiful and complex beauty”. Additional works by Daniel Weaver and David Hurd.

The New Composers Forum and Concert is made possible in part by a grant from the Alice M. Ditson Fund at Columbia University.

Sunday July 10 at 7:30 p.m. the annual “Pops” Concert, always a delight at the Festival, takes place at the Criterion on Sunday July 11 at 7:30 p.m. with “Golden Songs from the Golden Era”. Downeast artists Celine Mogielnicki and Isaac Bray perform songs by Richards Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein with pianist Cara Chowing. A special pre-concert dinner buffet is available at the Fogtown Brewery in Bar Harbor, beginning at 5:30 p.m.

Monday July 11e at 10:30 a.m., the Young Audience Concert #3 takes place at the Criterion Theater. Pierre et le loup will be interpreted by Antonio Galera, piano and Deborah Fortier, narrator. Free for children of all ages.

Tuesday, July 12 at 7:30 p.m. Festival favorite pianist Antonio Galera returns to Bar Harbor to perform at the Criterion. He will perform a solo piano recital of all Spanish music by Albeniz, Asenio, De Falla, Sánchez Benimeli, Coli and Ginastera. Critics rave about “a poet of particularly refined piano tone” – John Ross

Friday, July 15 at 7:30 p.m. Fully staged, “La Bohème,” Puccini’s beloved love story, will be performed by the Bar Harbor Music Festival Opera Theater at the 1932 Criterion Theater. Led by Joseph DeSota, the cast includes some of the nation’s finest young operatic talent, accompanied on piano by musical director Cara Chowning.

Saturday July 16 at 7:30 p.m. The beloved Ardelia Trio will return to the Criterion Theatre, performing music by Mozart, Smetana, Frank Bridge and Sophia Serghi, who will join the trio for special Q&As with the audience. The members of the trio, Janey Choi, violinist, Clara Yang, cellist, and Jihea Hong Park, pianist, have been playing together since their early years of study in Seoul, Korea. EBS Network Evening News in Korea said it well: “…There is something very special and unique about the way they present classical music.

Sunday July 17 at 1 p.m. Young Audience Concert no. 4 with the Wolverine Jazz Band trio at the Criterion. Free for children of all ages.

Sunday July 17 at 7:30 p.m., the Wolverine Jazz Band, one of Boston’s finest Dixieland and traditional jazz and swing bands, appears for the 17e consecutive season with Jazz Night at the 1932 Criterion Theatre. John Clark, clarinet/sax, and Jimmy Mazzy, banjo, lead the group.

Monday July 18 7:30 p.m. Pianist Kayoung An performs music by Handel, Mozart, Bolcom and Brahms at the Criterion Theatre. “Wonder” – Yuja Wang.

Wednesday, July 20 at 11 a.m. Young Audience Concert #5 Open rehearsal with Maestro Francis Fortier and the Bar Harbor Festival String Orchestra at the Criterion. Take a front row seat for the rehearsal process and hear the music of Mozart, Vivaldi and more with pianist Kayoung An.

Thursday, July 21 at 10:30 a.m. Young Audience Concert #6 Hawk Henries brings his beautiful Native American flutes to the outdoor tent of the Jesup Memorial Library for this performance/

Friday, July 22 at 7:30 p.m. The 16th Annual Bob Noonan Memorial Concert is scheduled for the Criterion Theatre. Francis Fortier will conduct the Bar Harbor Festival String Orchestra with solo pianist Kayoung An. Music by Mozart, Vivaldi, Mendelssohn and Dvorak.

Sunday July 24 at 7:30 p.m. The Festival Gala will bring down the curtain on 56 2022e Season at the 1932 Criterion Theatre. Francis Fortier conducts the Festival String Orchestra with an extraordinary program of music by JS Bach, Elgar, and more. Solo violinists Janey Choi and Erika Atchley. Pre-concert buffet dinner available at the Fogtown Brasserie for $45.

Tickets are $30 and student tickets are $15. Pops, Jazz and Gala tickets are $45, with an additional pre-concert buffet available before Pops and Gala at the Fogtown Brewery for $45. Opera tickets are $35, $50, and $80. All tickets entitle the purchaser to a reserved seat. A season pass for $350 saves 20% off the single-ticket price booked and gives you the best seats in the house, plus admission to rehearsals.

For tickets and information, visit or contact Bar Harbor Music Festival/The Rodick Building/59 Cottage Street/Bar Harbor, Maine 04609-188/phone: 207-288-5744; email: [email protected] Tickets are available online at

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