The Festival proudly welcomes back four world-class orchestras – the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Dallas Symphony Orchestra (DSO), The Philadelphia Orchestra (TPO), and the New York Philharmonic – and seven leading conductors, including Jaap van Zweden, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, and Fabio Luisi, to perform live concerts held safely outdoors for in-person audiences, many for the first time in over a year.
Soloists include Daniil Trifonov, Joshua Bell, Conrad Tao, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Yefim Bronfman, James Ehnes, Gil Shaham, Augustin Hadelich, and Bravo! Vail Artistic Director Anne-Marie McDermott. DSO Music Director Fabio Luisi and TPO Principal Guest Conductor Nathalie Stutzmann make Festival debuts.
The Danish, Escher, Verona, and Viano String Quartets are featured in a full schedule of chamber music that also includes the pioneering Music Box – a mobile concert hall – and a multitude of free community concerts.
Bravo! Vail announces a vibrant summer of music in the beautiful Vail Valley with more than 50 concerts taking place from June 24 to August 4, 2021. The Festival’s 34th season showcases four world-class resident orchestras at the outdoor Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater – Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Dallas Symphony Orchestra (DSO), The Philadelphia Orchestra (TPO), and the New York Philharmonic – in addition to riveting programs for chamber ensembles and the mobile Music Box stage that brings live concerts to neighborhoods throughout the Vail Valley.
Bravo! Vail is following all local, state, and national health and safety guidelines, continuing its commitment to the health and safety of its patrons, artists, and staff as its top priority. Each of the four resident orchestras has done the same over the past year and consequently will bring appropriately sized ensembles to the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater stage to perform an incredible variety of music by composers spanning four centuries.
Artistic Director Anne-Marie McDermott comments, “I have never been more grateful as an Artistic Director to play a role in bringing audiences and artists together again to experience the power and exhilaration of live music in the midst of such an extraordinary time. It is my greatest hope that the magical combination of Bravo’s magnificent setting, its world-class artists, and incredible music will provide us all with inspiration and healing.”
• The New York Philharmonic returns to Vail July 21, July 23, July 24, July 25, July 27, and July 28, performing its first in-person concerts with Music Director Jaap van Zweden since February 2020.
• Superstar violinist and conductor Joshua Bell leads the Vail return of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields across three evenings – June 24, June 26, and June 27 – including performances of Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto, Dvořák’s Violin Concerto, and Mozart’s “Turkish” Violin Concerto.
• Violinist James Ehnes performs Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra and Fabio Luisi, who makes his Vail debut as DSO’s Music Director on June 30.
• DSO’s Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik returns for his 27th season at Bravo! Vail for two pops programs and a patriotic concert – July 2, 4, and 5.
• Violinist Gil Shaham returns to Vail to perform Joseph Bologne’s Violin Concerto No. 9 in G major on July 9 with The Philadelphia Orchestra and Nathalie Stutzmann, who makes her Vail debut.
• Pianist Yefim Bronfman joins The Philadelphia Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin for Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto on July 16.
• Bravo! Vail Artistic Director Anne-Marie McDermott takes the stage with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields and Joshua Bell performing Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 9 on June 27 and with The Philadelphia Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin performing Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 25 on July 17.
• Pianist Daniil Trifonov returns to Vail performing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 with the New York Philharmonic led by Music Director Jaap van Zweden on July 21.
• World premiere of Bruce Adolphe’s Diesen Kuss der ganzen Welt! with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra and Fabio Luisi on July 1
• Vail premiere of Valerie Coleman’s Seven O’Clock Shout, commissioned and performed by The Philadelphia Orchestra to honor frontline workers, conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin on July 17
• Vail premiere of Caroline Shaw’s Evergreen – co-commissioned by the Festival and performed by the Viano String Quartet on July 22
More Festival highlights
• Bramwell Tovey returns to Vail conducting the New York Philharmonic in a program with Augustin Hadelich as well as one featuring beloved songs and Broadway hits on July 27 and 28
• The return of Anne-Marie McDermott’s artistic initiative, Immersive Experiences, which features the complete string quartets by Bartók examined by the Escher String Quartet over three concerts
• Jeff Tyzik conducts an upbeat, lively symphonic pops concert – the Queens of Soul – including works by Aretha Franklin and other hitmakers on July 2
• The continuation of community concerts on Bravo! Vail’s innovative Music Box mobile concert hall on July 7, July 8, July 12, July 21, July 22, and August 1
Education & Engagement highlights
• Bravo! Vail’s 2021 Family Concerts – chamber music in a family-friendly, interactive format and setting – are dedicated to the premiere of a Bravo! Vail commission entitled The Robot Piano Teacher written by Bruce Adolphe, which features Anne-Marie McDermott, violinist Oliver Neubauer, and violist Tabitha Rhee on July 7 and 8.
• The 2021 Piano Fellows invited as part of Bravo! Vail’s Professional Development initiative – Chaeyoung Park and Dominic Cheli – are featured on the Vail Chapel Series and Community Concerts. During their residence, the Fellows also collaborate with other musicians and receive personal coaching and mentoring from Anne-Marie McDermott.
* Events with an asterisk denote livestream tickets will be available for purchase
ACADEMY OF ST MARTIN IN THE FIELDS
In its much-anticipated return to Bravo! Vail, London’s Academy of St Martin in the Fields – one of the world’s finest chamber orchestras – brings its fresh, brilliant interpretations back to Vail with Music Director and virtuoso violinist Joshua Bell at the helm.
• *Thursday, June 24: Bell Plays Tchaikovsky – Joshua Bell performs Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto alongside Beethoven’s Overture to Egmont and Bizet’s Symphony No. 1
• Saturday, June 26: Beethoven’s “Eroica” – Joshua Bell performs Dvořák’s Violin Concerto in addition to Beethoven’s “Eroica” Symphony
• Sunday, June 27: All-Mozart Evening – In this all-Mozart program, Joshua Bell performs Mozart’s “Turkish” Violin Concerto alongside his “Prague” Symphony and Piano Concerto No. 9 with Bravo! Vail’s Artistic Director Anne-Marie McDermott
DALLAS SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Bravo! Vail is thrilled to welcome Maestro Fabio Luisi, Music Director of the endlessly inventive Dallas Symphony Orchestra, as the Orchestra returns to Vail in its 20th season. Luisi makes his Vail debut as part of his inaugural season with the DSO while Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik returns with soulful pizzazz.
• *Wednesday, June 30: Ehnes Plays Mendelssohn – James Ehnes performs Mendelssohn’s renowned Violin Concerto with Fabio Luisi on the podium alongside Beethoven’s Eighth Symphony and Leonore Overture No. 1
• Thursday, July 1: Saint-Saëns & Schumann – Fabio Luisi leads the DSO with 2009 Avery Fisher Career Grant winner Alessio Bax at the piano performing Saint-Saëns’ Piano Concerto No. 2, plus Bruce Adolphe’s Diesen Kuss der ganzen Welt! and Schumann’s Fourth Symphony
• Friday, July 2: Queens of Soul, a symphonic experience including hits by Aretha Franklin, Tina Turner, Whitney Houston, Amy Winehouse, Alicia Keys, and more, conducted by Jeff Tyzik with vocalist Shayna Steele
• Sunday, July 4: Patriotic Concert led by Tyzik with trumpeter Byron Stripling
• Monday, July 5: Ragtime Kings, a syncopated, toe-tapping evening of music led by Tyzik with trumpeter Byron Stripling
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA
The Philadelphia Orchestra’s distinctively luxurious sound and penchant for innovation are showcased in its 14th Bravo! Vail season with six diverse programs. Principal Guest Conductor Designate Nathalie Stutzmann makes her Vail debut, and the imaginative power of the Orchestra’s artistic leadership will be on full display as Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin also takes the podium in Vail. Performances feature Anne-Marie McDermott and longtime Festival favorites Stéphane Denève, Gil Shaham, Yefim Bronfman, and more.
• Friday, July 9: Stutzmann Conducts Shaham Gil Shaham performs Joseph Bologne’s Violin Concerto No. 9 in G major alongside Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony
• Saturday, July 10: Mendelssohn “Italian” Symphony plus Ricardo Morales joins for Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto in A major
• Sunday, July 11: Denève Leads Philadelphia Pianist Jean-Efflam Bavouzet joins TPO under Stéphane Denève in Beethoven’s Second Piano Concerto; other works of the evening include Prokofiev’s “Classical” Symphony and two pieces by Ravel
• *Thursday, July 15: Barber & Dvořák The evening features Dvořák’s Symphony No. 8, Walker’s Lyric for Strings, and Barber’s Violin Concerto with Juliette Kang, all led by Stéphane Denève
• Friday, July 16: Yannick Returns Yefim Bronfman joins The Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin for Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 and the Orchestra performs Florence Price’s Symphony No. 1
• Saturday, July 17: McDermott Plays Mozart Anne-Marie McDermott joins TPO for Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 25 in C major and Yannick leads the Orchestra in Brahms’ Symphony No. 1 alongside Valerie Coleman’s Seven O’Clock Shout – commissioned by The Philadelphia Orchestra and premiered virtually last summer to honor frontline workers
NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
America’s first symphony orchestra, the storied New York Philharmonic, brings the orchestral series to a brilliant finale. Its six-concert residency opens with pianist Daniil Trifonov playing Beethoven and features many of the world’s greatest musical artists.
• Wednesday, July 21: Trifonov Plays Beethoven Daniil Trifonov joins the New York Philharmonic and Music Director Jaap van Zweden with Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 alongside Mozart’s Symphony No. 40 in G minor
• Friday, July 23: Tchaikovsky & Haydn Van Zweden leads the New York Philharmonic in Tchaikovsky’s Souvenir de Florence and Philharmonic Principal Cello Carter Brey performs Haydn’s Cello Concerto
• Saturday, July 24: Tao Plays Shostakovich Conrad Tao and Philharmonic Principal Trumpet Christopher Martin are soloists in Shostakovich’s Concerto for Piano, Trumpet, and String Orchestra, and Jaap van Zweden leads Haydn’s Oxford Symphony
• Sunday, July 25: Thibaudet Plays Ravel Stravinsky’s Suite from Pulcinella is featured alongside Jean-Yves Thibaudet’s performance of Ravel’s beloved Piano Concerto in G, led by Jaap van Zweden
• Tuesday, July 27: Tovey & Hadelich Augustin Hadelich joins the Orchestra for Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 2
• Wednesday, July 28: Bramwell Returns to Vail Bramwell Tovey leads the Orchestra through an evening of beloved songs and Broadway hits
CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES
Chamber music is at the heart of the Festival, and this year a four-concert series celebrates the genre’s iconic works.
• Tuesday, June 29: Academy of St Martin in the Fields Chamber Ensemble performs Schubert, Mozart, and Mendelssohn
• Tuesday, July 13: Two Pianos Four Hands Anne-Marie McDermott and Jean-Efflam Bavouzet join forces in a piano duo program including Bavouzet’s two-piano arrangement of Debussy’s Jeux
• Tuesday, July 20: New York Philharmonic String Quartet with Anne-Marie McDermott performing Mendelssohn and Schumann
• Wednesday, August 4: Danish String Quartet performs Mozart and Schubert
Now in its second season, Bravo! Vail’s Immersive Experiences series focuses on the chamber music of Bela Bartók. Featuring the Escher String Quartet, the series provides audiences with the opportunity to hear all six of Bartok’s epic string quartets as well as his early romantic piano quintet and several of his fun violin duos. This deep dive provides a rare immersion into a sonic world where classical traditions are melded with Eastern European folk music central to the composer’s life. Pre-concert talks and artist Q&As enhance a fascinating journey into one of the most influential composers of the 20th century.
• Thursday, July 29: Bartók, Part I featuring string quartets 1, 3, and 5
• Friday, July 30: Bartók, Part II featuring string quartets 2, 4, and 6
• Saturday, July 31: Bartók, Part III featuring his violin duos and piano quintet
Bravo! Vail’s Music Box, a mobile stage, was conceived and built in 2020 in response to the pandemic and allowed the Festival to present nearly 50 concerts safely outdoors throughout the Vail Valley. With the Music Box this summer, Bravo! Vail continues to serve its community and fulfills its mission of enriching people’s lives through the power of music. Music Box concerts are part of the Free Concert Series.
• July 7, July 8, July 12, July 21, July 22, and August 1
THE LINDA & MITCH HART SOIRÉE SERIES
Renowned musicians lead four evenings of chamber music at magnificent private residences – settings reminiscent of those envisioned when the works were composed. Artist and program details will be announced in the coming weeks.
• June 28, July 14, July 19, and July 26