The 23Arts initiative has mounted a staggeringly ambitious and overstuffed Summer Music & Jazz Festival, with nearly 30 shows taking place in Tannersville, Windham and at the Bard Spiegeltent. But quantity is only one measure of this massive undertaking. The quality of acts is superb, with an emphasis on world-class jazz but a scope that includes far more than jazz.
The Festival kicks off with a personal favorite of mine, the great jazz pianist Dan Tepfer, revisiting his novel Goldberg Variations/Variations on Saturday, July 8 at 8 p.m. at the Windham Civic Centre Concert Hall, located at 5379 Route 23 in Windham. Tepfer alternates between quite-credible performances of Bach’s famous variations (at one time the quarry of Glenn Gould and a few others with the technical facility to handle them) and modern improvisations on Bach’s themes by a truly liberated improvisor.
On Sunday, July 9 at 11:30 a.m., Wayne Lee, Clancy Newman and Mike Lee perform “Mozart’s Spirit from Haydn’s Hands” at the United Methodist Church at 5942 Main Street in Tannersville. This event is free. On Thursday, July 13 at 8 p.m., “1920s: Birth of the Big Band” featuring Vince Giordano & the Nighthawks with Veronica Swift will perform at Bard SummerScape’s Spiegeltent, located at 60 Manor Avenue in Annandale-on-Hudson. Tickets for this Catskill Jazz Factory show cost $25.
For tickets and a complete breakdown of this multi-location summer music festival, visit www.23arts.org.