Summer tunes: Music in the Mountains 37th Anniversary SummerFest concert series |

Summer tunes: Music in the Mountains 37th Anniversary SummerFest concert series

Submitted to Prospector

For more than 37 years, Music in the Mountains SummerFest has been Northern California's premier summer concert series, featuring exciting outdoor performances and sophisticated chamber concerts, demonstrating that classical music, performed by a world-class orchestra and chorus, can transform lives and communities.

Led by artistic director Pete Nowlen and resident conductor Ryan Murray, SummerFest stretches over the course of 11 days from June 23 through July 3 and welcomes over 65 professional musicians and thousands of attendees to the beautiful park-like setting of the Nevada County Fairgrounds in Grass Valley.

This year's program embodies the bold spirit of summer — everything is singing and alive; promising the best of what might be.

Beginning with an enchanting evening of Handel and Bach and finishing with a spirited Patriotic Pops, SummerFest also includes Brahms "Serenade No. 1," Rachmaninoff's luscious "2nd Symphony," a tribute to American greats and the unforgettable songs of Leonard Bernstein and George Gershwin, and the evocative and intoxicating songs of thwarted love from "Romeo and Juliet," "Carmen" and more.

SummerFest event dates

Garden Party: 6 p.m. Saturday, June 23, at Dunham Estate in Grass Valley.

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A summer garden party at the sprawling Dunham Estate in Grass Valley. The evening features dinner, dessert, and a concert with Purcell's "Midsummer Night's Dream," Handel's "Water Music Suite in F" and Robin Mayforth performing Vivaldi's "Summer from the Four Seasons."

Brahms Serenade: 3 p.m. Sunday, June 24, Peace Lutheran Church in Grass Valley.

A sublime chamber concert featuring Mendelssohn's "Piano Trio in C minor, op. 66" and "Serenade No. 1," the charming yet rigorous score that was the genesis of Brahms' great symphonies.

Summer Brass: 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 26, Peace Lutheran Church in Grass Valley.

Featuring the Music in the Mountains Brass in a spirited program of music from the Renaissance to now.

Rachmaninoff's 2nd Symphony: 8 p.m. Thursday, June 28, Great Lawn, Nevada County Fairgrounds.

An epic concert featuring Rachmaninoff's luscious 2nd Symphony under the towering pines of the Nevada County Fairgrounds. The drama opens with Mozart's "Don Giovanni" and then into a dreamlike "Four Last Songs of Richard Strauss" sung by soprano Carrie Hennessey.

Bernstein & Gershwin: 8 p.m. Saturday, June 30, Great Lawn, Nevada County Fairgrounds.

A concert under the stars celebrating Leonard Bernstein's 100th and George Gershwin's 120th anniversaries with music from "West Side Story," "Candide," "Strike up the Band" and more. The night will culminate with Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" with pianist Richard Glazier.

Music of Love & Drama: 8 p.m. Sunday, July 1, Great Lawn, Nevada County Fairgrounds.

An orchestral program sizzling with romance and heartbreak by moonlight, featuring the tragedies of Tchaikovsky's "Romeo and Juliet," Sarasate's "Carmen Fantasy" featuring 9-year-old violin prodigy, Amaryn Olmeda, "The Force of Destiny," and more.

Patriotic Pops : 8 p.m. Tuesday, July 3, Great Lawn, Nevada County Fairgrounds.

Pack the family picnic basket, wave the flag, and honor America. Celebrate under the stars … and the stripes. Patriotic favorites, including Sousa's "Stars and Stripes Forever" will be played. It's a Music in the Mountains SummerFest finale tradition.


Tickets are $30 in advance, $40 at the gate, and $10 for students. Four concert tickets for $99 (good until 5/31), or reserved tables for six for $99.

For tickets and more information call 530-265-6124, visit the website at or the box office Tuesday-Friday between noon and 4 p.m. at 530 Searls Ave, Suite A, Nevada City.

Source: Music in the Mountains

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