Newport, R.I. — Nearly six months after making the difficult decision to cancel its summer festival for the first time in its 52-year history, the Newport Music Festival will present live concerts again October 12-14 at The Chanler at Cliff Walk. The concerts, featuring Charlie Albright (10/12), Neave Trio (10/13), and Boyd Meets Girl (10/14), will take place in a heated tent on the lawn of the Chanler. All concerts will begin promptly at 7 p.m. For more information and to reserve tickets, please visit NewportMusic.org.
When asked about the decision to go live again, Newport Music Festival President and Interim Executive Director Suzanna Laramee explained the process. “Safety first, then safety second and third. If we could not present these concerts with the utmost care for the safety of our attendees, staff and performers, we just would not do it.” Laramee continued, “We know that live music is good for the soul. It is good for our mental health. However, those benefits and our collective desire to be physically together had to be measured against the feasibility of presenting the concerts with each and every safety protocol in place, and in accordance with local and state guidelines.”
The concerts will feature contactless entry; symptom screening of all attendees, staff and volunteers; and hand sanitizer stations. It will be required that all staff and attendees wear masks coverings that cover the nose and mouth. Physical distancing of at least six feet between reserved parties will be required, and the spacing will be managed by Newport Music Festival staff and volunteers who have been trained and certified in COVID-19 safety protocols.
“This is a series of thrilling music by extraordinary artists at one of the most beautiful locations in Newport. We are delighted to add the Chanler at Cliff Walk to our historic list of musical homes and are looking forward to continuing the partnership for many seasons to come,” says Artistic Director Trevor Neal.
“Opening night will feature Newport favorite Charlie Albright, known for his much-loved improvisations on classical compositions. Mr. Albright has been hard at work during the pandemic, and our audiences will be the first people to hear this new repertoire. The second evening will feature the Neave Trio, known for their shared vision of performing works that deserve to be heard and their infectious onstage chemistry. And we will close with Boyd Meets Girl, comprised of husband and wife duo Laura Metcalf (cello) and Rupert Boyd (guitar), who will return to Newport to charm us again with a specially curated program. This is a series of bold stories that reflect our world, of beautiful music making, and of human emotions writ large.”
October 12, 7 p.m.; Tickets $100
Hailed “among the most gifted musicians of his generation” with a “dazzling natural keyboard affinity” by the Washington Post, American pianist/composer/improviser Charlie Albright will perform on October 12 at 7 p.m. Recipient of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant and Gilmore Young Artist Award, Albright won the Ruhr Klavier Festival Young Artist Award presented by Marc-André Hamelin (Germany) and the Young Concert Artists International Auditions. In addition to performing, Albright is sought after as a speaker, masterclass instructor, teacher and competition judge. His debut commercial recording, “Vivace,” has sold thousands of copies worldwide, and the first two parts of a three-part Schubert Series of live, all-Schubert recordings were released in 2017 and 2020. Albright breaks the “classical” rules of music by connecting with audiences like no other. Through his music, speaking and unique improvisations that bring music to life, he crosses all genres … and makes it fun.
The program for the evening will feature: 32 Variations in C minor, WoO 80 — Beethoven; “Für Elise” Variations — Beethoven/Albright; Piano Sonata No. 31 — Beethoven; and Études, Op. 25 — Chopin.
October 13 at 7 p.m.: Tickets $75-$90
Since forming in 2010, Neave Trio — violinist Anna Williams, cellist Mikhail Veselov and pianist Eri Nakamura — has earned enormous praise for its engaging, cutting-edge performances. WQXR explains, “‘Neave’ is actually a Gaelic name meaning ‘bright’ and ‘radiant,’ both of which certainly apply to this trio’s music making.” The group’s 2019 album, “Her Voice,” on Chandos Records, was named one of the best recordings of the year by both The New York Times and BBC Radio 3. The Boston Musical Intelligencer reports, “It is inconceivable that they will not soon be among the busiest chamber ensembles going,” and “their unanimity, communication, variety of touch and expressive sensibility rate first tier.”
The program for the evening will feature: Piano Trio No. 28 in D Major, Hob. XV-16 — Haydn; Piano Trio in A minor, Op. 150 — Amy Beach; Piano Trio — Rebecca Clarke; La Muerte del Ángel — Piazzolla.
Boyd Meets Girl
October 14 at 7 p.m.: Tickets $75-$90
Boyd Meets Girl pairs Australian classical guitarist Rupert Boyd with American cellist Laura Metcalf. The duo performs an eclectic and engaging range of repertoire, from Bach to Beyoncé. Both acclaimed soloists in their own right, Boyd has been described as “truly evocative” by The Washington Post, and as “a player who deserves to be heard” by Classical Guitar Magazine. And Metcalf, also a member of the ensembles Sybarite5 and Break of Reality, has been called “brilliant” by Gramophone. Boyd Meets Girl has toured throughout the US, India, Nepal, New Zealand, and every state and territory in Australia.
Boyd Meets Girl’s debut album, released on the Grammy award-winning label Sono Luminous, reached No. 3 on the Billboard Traditional Classical chart, and received the following review in Gramophone: “They play like one, with a harmony of purpose as sure as their intonation.” The album has received over a million streams on Spotify and has been broadcast on radio stations around the world, including New York’s WQXR and SiriusXM, and was selected as Album of the Week on California’s KDFC and Australia’s ABC Classic. The program for the evening will feature everything from Schubert and Fauré to Radiohead and Beyoncé.
For tickets and more information, please visit www.NewportMusic.org