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Local musicians kick-off music festival's sixth season

Consensus Ensemble members will perform in the Lakes Area Music Festival kick-off concert at 3 p.m. Sunday at Tornstrom Auditorium in Brainerd.1 / 2
Former Miss Minnesota Rebecca Yeh, a native of Nisswa, will perform in the Lakes Area Music Festival kick-off concert at 3 p.m. Sunday at Tornstrom Auditorium in Brainerd. 2 / 2

The Lakes Area Music Festival officially kicks off its sixth season with two free concerts to be held at Tornstrom Auditorium in Brainerd.

The annual Community Concert, featuring local instrumentalists and vocalists, will be performed at 3 p.m. Sunday. The second concert will be at 7 p.m. Wednesday and is titled "Sommermusik" and will feature works by Schubert, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Strauss among others.

The Community Concert will feature ensembles of various sizes. Three talented young musicians - Ava Figliuzzi and Hannah Stehling, violinists, and Sophie Stubbs, cellist - will open with a Trio Sonata by Corelli, followed by a performance by Christopher Fogderud, trumpet, Sarah Fogderud, trombone and pianist Cathy Taylor. Other featured performers will include local violinist and Miss America finalist Rebecca Yeh performing a movement of Felix Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto with an orchestra led by Heartland Symphony conductor Sergey Bogza, and a return performance by the popular vocal Consensus Ensemble.

"Sommermusik" will be preceded by an informative lecture given by Festival directors John Taylor Ward and Scott Lykins at 6:30 p.m. The first half of this program will feature vocal talents of acclaimed young performers Abigail Dueppen, Jennifer Panara and John Taylor Ward in summer-themed songs from the German Lied tradition by Schubert, Mendelssohn, Strauss and more. After intermission, returning Festival favorites - Jonathan Magness and Chloe Fedor, violins; Samantha Rodriguez, viola; Scott Lykins, cello; and Gregory DeTurck piano - will perform Robert Schumann's Piano Quintet.

According to Ward, the program offers a captivating mix of repertoire spanning from the blossoming of music and literature among the Germanic peoples and composers at the turn of the 19th century to music of the beginning of the 20th Century when the musical language of German Romanticism grew in scope and complexity.

Now in its sixth season, the Lakes Area Music Festival, an annual summer series attracting more than 100 of the country's leading orchestral and vocal performers, is taking place through Aug. 24. Performances, which will include chamber, symphonic orchestra and opera music.

The organization will also present a variety of educational and social opportunities for the audience and community to participate in.

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