The Midsummer Music Dream / Songe d'été en musique festival celebrates its tenth anniversary in this coming summer of 2015. The festival has, since its inception, striven to create a special bond with the citizens of Quebec. The musical performances reach their pinnacle in the shared experience of the present moment between dedicated artists and a receptive audience. Indeed, the richness of spirit so generously offered by the people of the local villages has been the singular most important force in allowing the festival to grow and prosper.
There are many summer music festivals that serve the needs of the public supremely well. They most often draw on music lovers with long histories of avid involvement, whose affluence fuels an enormous budget and the logistical support necessary for their existence. The uniqueness of this festival stems from its grass-roots origins. The good will of many volunteers from the local Eastern Townships and from abroad have sustained the festival and its philosophy that live musical performance is the province for all.
A Midsummer Music Dream / Songe d'été en musique began in 2006 founded by guitarists Harris Becker, Pasquale Bianculli and flutist Kathleen McDonald. In its first few years the festival had a modest beginning with classical guitar, flute, voice and Early Music. Concerts by Canadian and American musicians were given during the week in neighboring villages.
The festival has grown steadily each year. In 2009 the festival started a community choir with the hope of including more local people and strengthening community involvement. Each summer since then there has been a major choral work performed. These have included the Fauré Requiem, Vivaldi's Gloria, Schubert's Mass and the Mozart Requiem. An opera/vocal program was incorporated in 2011, which has brought talented voice students from the US and Canada to the festival. In 2015 world- acclaimed Chinese pipa virtuoso Liu Fang, a Montreal resident, and Jeffrey Marcus, a world-renowned pianist will once again be a visiting artists at the festival. They have each made extraordinary musical and cultural contributions to the festival, opening up new worlds to our audiences.
Having the Youth Orchestra of the Americas at the festival in 2015 is an extension of our commitment to bring excellence in musical performance to the Eastern Townships of rural Quebec. This will be a landmark event.
Risks and challenges
The performers, teachers, students and community are committed to the growth of A Midsummer Music Dream / Songe d'été en musique. During our ten years we have reached many milestones. In accepting the challenge of bringing the Youth Orchestra of the Americas to the festival we continue our united commitment to excellence in performance and pedagogy. However, without enough financial support for this project the festival will be adversely impacted as we enter into our second decade.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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