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Lakes Area Music Festival offers musical 'appetizers'

Nicole Sutterfield of the Milwaukee Symphony will be among the performers in the Lakes Area Music Festival prelude concert series starting Saturday. Submitted 1 / 5
Lakes Area Music Festival Executive and Artistic Director Scott Lykins will be among the performers in the festival’s prelude concerts starting Saturday night in Aitkin. There will be six concerts before the main concert series begins July 30. Submitted 2 / 5
Pianist Tanya Gabrielian will be among the performers in the Lakes Area Music Festival prelude concert series starting Saturday. Gabrielian will make her appearance in the second set of concerts starting July 22. Submitted 3 / 5
Lakes Area Music Festival Associate Artistic Director John Taylor Ward will be among the performers in the festival’s prelude concerts starting Saturday night in Aitkin. Submitted 4 / 5
Violinist Rebecca Corruccini will be among the performers in the Lakes Area Music Festival prelude concert series starting Saturday. Submitted5 / 5

The ninth annual Lakes Area Music Festival will provide two weeks of "tantalizing musical appetizers before the festival's main course" before the main season kicks off July 30, organizers stated in a news release.

Historically taking place in the weeks leading up the the full music festival programming, the prelude concerts will once again be performed at venues throughout the Brainerd lakes area and are free of charge.

The first week of prelude concerts, which kicks off Saturday night, will feature excerpts from George Bizet's "Carmen," the opera that will be performed in its entirety in August. Music by Samuel Barber, Bela Bartok, Antonin Dvorak and Maurice Ravel will also be performed, giving us a taste of this year's festival theme of "a musical journey to fascinating places, both near and far."

Performers for the concerts will include Rebecca Corruccini and Kathryn Bennett on violin and both with the Minnesota Orchestra; Nicole Sutterfield, viola, Milwaukee Symphony; LAMF Executive and Artistic Director Scott Lykins on cello and piano, who also is a newly member of the South Dakota Symphony; and LAMF Associate Artistic Director John Taylor Ward, baritone.

Performances are:

• 7 p.m. Saturday, Aitkin Opera House.

• 2 p.m. Sunday, Trinity Lutheran Church, Brainerd.

• 7 p.m. Sunday, Crosslake Lutheran Church.

The second week of prelude concerts which begin July 22, will showcase Lykins on cello and Tanya Gabrielian on piano. The duo will perform Claude Debussy's "Cello Sonata" and works for cello and piano by Astor Piazzolla and Manuel de Falla. George Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" piano solo is also on the program.

Performances are:

• 7 p.m. July 22, Motley United Methodist Church.

• 2 p.m. July 23, Salem Lutheran Church, Deerwood.

• 7 p.m. July 23, Lutheran Church of the Cross, Nisswa.

The LAMF is an annual summer series attracting leading instrumental and vocal performers that takes place July 30 through Aug. 20. During the main festival, all performances are free and are held at Tornstrom Auditorium in Brainerd. More than 125 instrumentalists and vocalists from 24 states and three continents will be in the Brainerd lakes area as guest artists.

Visit www.lakesareamusic.org for more information.

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