Brent Hallenbeck, Burlington Free Press
June 3, 2010

You have to figure that Mozart a guy born in Austria among beautiful lakes and mountains would appreciate the similar settings for many of the orchestral concerts held each year during the Vermont Mozart Festival. This year, of course, is no exception, as shown by this schedule thats built upon the 200th anniversary of the birth of another renowned composer, Frederic Chopin:

• 7:30 p.m. July 18  The grand opening performance on the south porch at Shelburne Farms, overlooking Lake Champlain, will be led by conductor and pianist Jean-Claude Pennetier (gates open for picnicking at 5:15 p.m.; dressage exhibition at 6:30 p.m.)

• 7:30 p.m. July 20 The Town Hall Theater in Middlebury hosts the Chopin recital Fryderyks Polonaises, again featuring Pennetier on piano.

• 7:30 p.m. July 21 The Oriana Gilbert and Sullivan Singers lead The Yeoman of the Guard at The Essex.

• 7:30 p.m. July 23 iolinist Harumi Rhodes sits in for a program appropriately titled Mozart, Mozart, Mozart at Kingsland Bay State Park in Ferrisburgh (gates open for picnicking at 5:30 p.m.)

• 7 p.m. July 24 Beethovens Eroica highlights the concert on the south porch at Shelburne Farms (gates open for picnicking at 5 p.m.).

• 7 p.m. July 25 The Sunday Serenade with conductor Phillippe Entremont and pianist Gil Shohat takes place in the shadow of the Green Mountains in the Trapp Family Lodge concert meadow outside Stowe (gates open for picnicking at 5 p.m.).

• 7:30 p.m. July 27 Shohat performs a Chopin recital titled Piano at the Ponds, The Ponds at Bolton Valley.

• 7:30 p.m. July 28 The Steve Wilson Trio gives the festival a jazzy flair with Sax on the Beach at the Grand Isle Lake House (gates open for picnicking at 5:30 p.m.)

• 7:30 p.m. July 30 The conductor of the July 25 performance sits at the piano bench for the Chopin recital Entremont on the Rocks at the Barre Opera House.

• 7 p.m. July 31 Conductor William Metcalfe oversees a program highlighted by Vivaldis The Four Seasons, south porch at Shelburne Farms (gates open for picnicking at 5 p.m.)

• 7 p.m. Aug. 1 Conductor Damon Gupton leads the orchestra, the Steve Wilson Trio and soloists Jennifer Grim (flute), Melvin Kaplan (oboe) and James Duncan (trumpet) through a program at the Trapp Family Lodge concert meadow titled Fresh Air (gates open for picnicking at 5 p.m.).

• 7:30 p.m. Aug. 3 The Vergennes Opera House hosts Chopins Preludes with Jean-Francois Latour on piano.

• 7:30 p.m. Aug. 4 Mozart in the Manger, Schubert in the Stall features Allen Blustein (clarinet) and Elizabeth Metcalfe (piano) at the West Monitor Barn in Richmond (gates open for picnicking at 5:30 p.m.).

• 7:30 p.m. Aug. 6 Rieko Aizawa is featured on piano at the Chopin program Coachyard Fantaisie at the Coach Barn at Shelburne Farms (gates open for picnicking at 5:30 p.m.).

• 7 p.m. Aug. 7 The grand finale takes place on the south porch at Shelburne Farms with conductor Christopher Wilkins, Grim on flute and Latour on piano playing pieces by Mendelssohn, Mozart and Chopin (gates open for picnicking at 5 p.m.).

• 7 p.m. Aug. 8 Every good concert (and concert series) deserves an encore; the Royal Encore led by Wilkins with violinist Rachel Barton Pine features the work of Korngold, Mozart and Mendelssohn at the Trapp Family Lodge concert meadow (gates open for picnicking at 5 p.m.).

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