Genres bend and blend, echoing of off canyon walls in sunset concerts along the Colorado River; intimate Musical Walks of miraculous natural beauty lead to stunning recitals performed by virtuosi; three noon concerts in the sonically perfect and visually breathtaking Colorado River Grotto starring a grand piano which arrived the same way you did: by jet boat! HERE, at the Moab Music Festival, August 29 to September 9, is music in concert with the landscape, with a whopper of a topper: a four day raft trip downriver to Lake Powell, featuring concerts and scenic hikes en route.
According to Festival Co-Founder and Music Director Michael Barrett, “Our 21st season celebrates a new generation of instrumentalists and singer/songwriters, while paying homage to the ancient characteristics of the Moab landscape, the original people of America, and musical masterpieces, in a fabulous balance of youthful energy and history. And of course the red-rock landscape always seems to give our concerts an added depth we can find only here.”
Young and old, first-timers and old timers will delight in performances by Michael Barrett (piano) and Artistic Director and Co-Founder, Leslie Tomkins (viola). A pair of concerts at historic and recently renovated Star Hall highlight the rich and varied world of chamber music, opening and closing the Festival. Unique programs include The Future of American Song, featuring Line Up! by Gabriel Kahane whom the New York Times called “a one-man cultural cuisinart,” and Carla Kihlstedt and Mathias Bossi of internet innovation Rabbit Rabbit Radio; and The Wisdom of the Earth, a concert rooted in the legacy of America’s native people whose lives were centered on the earth and their relationship to it, featuring works by Kenji Bunch, Russell Goodluck and Forest by Dawn, a world premiere by Juantio Becenti, both hosted by Red Cliffs Lodge. Concerts at Sorrel River Ranch Resort and Spa include the Pedrito Martinez Group, an ensemble whose music the New York Times described as “complex, blenderized Africa-to-the-New-World funk” in a vibrant program of Cuban-influenced jazz; and The Four Seasons, featuring Argentinean tango master Astor Piazzolla’s homage to Vivaldi’s famous work. The free Rocky Mountain Power Family Picnic Concert on Labor Day in Old City Park, is an annual Festival tradition, and comes complete with knee-slapping, hand clapping and flag-waving of both the figurative and literal stripe, along with 300 years of American song including traditional folk songs and songs by Bolcom, Bernstein, Gershwin, and others. And of course there’s a generous serving of chamber music including Faure, Mozart, Brahms, Janáček and Mendelssohn.
Check out our signature Music Festival events—the Grotto Concerts—on the Colorado River and the Musical River Raft Trip, a four day float trip down the river with a few of the Festival artists.
For more information or to purchase tickets for the 21st Moab Music Festival, please visit www.moabmusicfest.org or telephone the Box Office at (435) 259-7003. You may also visit the Festival Office at 58 East 300 South, Moab, UT 84532.