For immediate release
July 12, 2000
Laura Gross, NPR

NPR Presents Music from the Aspen Music Festival to Listeners Nationwide
Harris Concert Hall Saturday, July 15, 2000

Aspen, Co.-The sounds of some of the world's finest musicians performing in one of the world's most inspiring settings will fill the airwaves when National Public Radio® (NPR®) presents an unprecedented weekend of performances from the Aspen Music Festival and School. For fifty years, the Aspen Music Festival and School has been both a gathering point for classical artists at the top of their craft, as well as a training ground for the next generation of world-class musicians, solidifying its reputation as one of the most important and dynamic music festivals in the world. For the weekend of July 29 and 30, NPR will share Aspen's high-altitude artistry with the nation, with no fewer than five NPR programs featuring performances recorded at the Festival's breathtaking concert venues.

On Saturday, July 15, 2000, media are invited to interview NPR talent, producers, technicians, and engineers as they turn Aspen's Harris Hall into an intimate recording studio for the concert that evening. Titled An Evening with NPR's Performance Today, the program will be hosted from the stage by NPR's Lisa Simeone. NPR will broadcast the concert on Saturday, July 29 on NPR member stations throughout the country, with a repeat broadcast on Friday, August 11. The program will include appearances by some of Aspen's high-profile artists, including violinists Joshua Bell, Robert McDuffie, Philip Setzer of the Emerson String Quartet, and Alexander Kerr, the 25-year old American native who's the new concertmaster of Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam. Also on the program are pianists Joseph Kalichstein and Orli Shaham, clarinetist Joaquin Valdepenas, and Aspen Music Festival and School Music Director David Zinman. Mr. Zinman will introduce a performance by the Academy of Conducting Orchestra at Aspen, a new orchestra of conductors ensemble launched at Mr. Zinman's initiative.

NPR's Aspen Weekend broadcast on July 29 and 30, will present listeners with a breathtaking range of outstanding performances from the Aspen Music Festival and School. On Saturday, July 29 (and again on August 11), NPR's Performance Today will broadcast the concert performed at Harris Hall, the intimate concert space at Aspen that's been dubbed "The Carnegie Hall of the Rockies." Later in the day, NPR World of Opera will broadcast "The Rake's Progress" by Igor Stravinsky, the composer's only opera, written in a Mozartian vein, and described as "gorgeous music and an inspiring story of one man's search for purpose." The opera will be recorded in performance at the historic Wheeler Opera House in downtown Aspen, built in 1889 during the height of Aspen's Silver Boom, and restored twice. Also on Saturday, At the Opera, NPR's half-hour opera "pre-game" program will provide some historical context for the Wheeler Opera House broadcast of The Rake's Progress.

On Sunday, July 30, NPR's Aspen Weekend continues with the first-ever remote recordings to be featured on NPR's Sunday Baroque. Host Suzanne Bona sets the scene at Harris Hall, when Joshua Rifkin and the Bach Ensemble become the first period-instrument ensemble to perform in Aspen's 51-year history. Next is the Sunday edition of NPR's Performance Today, featuring some of the finest performances recorded in concert during Aspen's Summer 2000. Finally, NPR offers a special broadcast of the highlight of Aspen's season: the gala inauguration of the brand-new Benedict Music Tent, a technological and acoustical tour-de-force. Lisa Simeone hosts this special two-hour program featuring a world premiere by American composer George Tsontakis, and a performance of Gustav Mahler's epic Symphony No. 2, the Resurrection Symphony. David Zinman conducts the Aspen Festival Orchestra, the Colorado Symphony Chorus, and soloists Suzanne Mentzner and Dominque Labelle. For broadcast times in a specific city, contact your local NPR station or visit

Renowned for its journalistic excellence and standard-setting news, information, and cultural programming, NPR reaches a growing audience of nearly 15 million Americans each week via more than 644 public radio stations. NPR® also distributes programming to listeners in Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa via NPR Worldwidesm, to military installations overseas via American Forces Network and throughout Japan via cable.

-------------The Details-------------

NPR's Performance Today Prepares for Live Studio Recording and Harris Concert Hall Live Performance

Producers, Technicians, and Engineers Prepare for Performance Performance:
Host Lisa Simeone; violinists Joshua Bell, Robert McDuffie, Alexander Kerr, and Philip Setzer, pianists Joseph Kalichstein, Orli Shaham, Music Director David Zinman.

Saturday, July 15, 2000
Pre-Performance: 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Live Performance: 8:00 - 10:00 p.m.

Harris Concert Hall; 960 3rd Street; Aspen, CO 81611

NPR Headquarters: Laura Gross 202-414-2304
NPR Producer in Aspen, Co.: Benjamin Roe 888- 583-6476
Aspen Music Festival: Betsy Furth 970-925-3254, ext 121