Every summer since 2003, Music@Menlo has presented a three-week chamber music festival of concerts, recitals, master classes and lectures. The festival's 2020 edition, with the theme "Intermezzo," boasts a schedule that's as packed as ever, with three weeks of daily musical events, including an anticipated album release — but all online. Music@Menlo's Intermezzo runs July 17 through Aug. 8. A kickoff event, which takes place July 17, 5 p.m., will feature a welcome from festival's two artistic directors, Wu Han and David Finckel, and offer an overview of the festival.
The event is carrying on, but of course, it's not business as usual: The coronavirus pandemic led the festival directors to postpone this year's planned "Haydn Connection" theme until 2021 and quickly create a new schedule of events for 2020. "Intermezzo" builds on archival performances and lectures, but also includes some new performances and talks. The festival will revisit a number of favorite past performances, but with the addition of new interviews and conversations that offer a chance to catch up with some of the festival's featured artists from previous years, see where they are now, and learn about their lives during the pandemic.
Other highlights include new performances by pianist Gilles Vonsattel, (July 19); the Calidore String Quartet (July 26); pianist Michael Brown and cellist Nicholas Canellakis (Aug. 2); and a July 26 live online launch party, which celebrates the release of a new recording of Franz Schubert's masterwork, "Winterreise," by baritone Nikolay Borchev and pianist and Music@Menlo co-artistic director Wu Han.
All events are free, although donations to benefit artists are encouraged. Find a full schedule and links to watch the performances at musicatmenlo.org.