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Classical Music Fest Returns to Central Oregon Coast in September

Published 07/24/21 at 3:45 AM PST
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Classical Music Fest Returns to Central Oregon Coast in September

(Lincoln City, Oregon) – Starting in the late ‘80s, it's been a fixture on the Oregon coast for classical aficionados. With the exception of last year during the pandemic, the Siletz Bay Music Festival has been a staple of live music each year, though it did manage to go strictly digital in 2020. This year, however, it's back and it's spread its wings from Lincoln City down to Newport, with nine days boasting 12 performance and dozens of virtuosos in both jazz and classical.

The Siletz Bay Music Festival takes place September 4 - 12 in Lincoln City and Newport.

The festival began with salon-style performances at the home of festival director and founder Seriu Luca, who lived part time in the area at the time, first called the Cascade Head Music Festival. Amid this majestic setting and dramatic backdrop, the festival grew over the decades to take over various venues and later morphed into the Siletz Bay Music Festival.

Now, this year's roster boasts 12 concerts over the nine days, including performances of classical chamber, jazz and orchestral music, a bit of Broadway, the popular “Musical Tapas” tastes and tunes event, and a gala benefit dinner and concert. Joining artistic director Yaacov (Yaki) Bergman will be some of the festival's favorite musicians including Mei-ting Sun on piano and renowned clarinetist Ken Peplowski plus some exciting new-to-Siletz-Bay talent including Oregon's own Anthea Kreston and Jason Duckles plus jazz singer Karla Harris out of Atlanta.


Mei-ting Sun

Festival venues include a site that will host a festival event for the first time: two orchestral concerts will be held at the B'Nai Brith Camp (BB Camp) on Devil's Lake in Lincoln City. Despite this season's Covid-shortened schedule, the festival will again feature three free concerts, one at Lincoln City's Congregational Church and two at the Lincoln City Cultural Center which will also host chamber and jazz, Musical Tapas and the benefit dinner concert events.

The free concerts will include the traditional Tuesday night chamber performance at the Congregational Church on 9/7, and a concert for children and their families on Thursday afternoon 9/9. Sunday morning, 9/5, Bagels with Beethoven will feature a performance and musical chat moderated by Joan Behrens Bergman -- and bagels.

A limited number of tickets are now on sale for the 2021 Siletz Bay Music Festival, which is keeping it smaller due to remaining COVID concerns. Prices for tickets vary: chamber and jazz tickets, $25; orchestra, $40; Musical Tapas, $55 (with tapas provided by Side Door Café); and $125 for the benefit dinner, (also catered by Side Door Café).

A recent addition is the September 9 concert in Newport, featuring soprano Stella Markou and pianist/composer Martin Kennedy.

It happens at 7:30 p.m. at the Doerfler Family Theatre located in the Pacific Maritime Heritage Museum, with Newport's stunning Yaquina Bay and bridge as the backdrop. This is only the second time Siletz Bay Music Festival has expanded its reach as far south as Newport and it is the first time for Markou and Kennedy performing for Siletz Bay Music Festival.

“For a long time I wanted to establish a connection between the people of Newport and Siletz Bay Music Festival,” said director Bergman. “We did this in 2019 with a recital by renowned pianist, Gerald Robbins. We are excited to continue the tradition because our two communities have so much to offer each other in the way of music and the arts. The artists, Stella Markou and Martin Kennedy are looking forward to performing in this beautiful space."

Siletz Bay Music Festival organizers say they are happy to offer incentives to encourage people to buy tickets early and often.

Pick Three: Purchase tickets for any three concerts excluding Tapas and the Friday night benefit dinner and get 5% off the total ticket price.

Pick Six: Purchase tickets for any six concerts excluding the Friday Night benefit dinner and get 10% off the total ticket price.

Grand Slam: Purchase tickets for any eight performances and get 10% off the total ticket price, (except for the Friday night benefit dinner), PLUS Priority Seating at every concert.

Grand Slam ticket holders will be admitted to the venue 15 minutes prior to the standard admittance time to choose their preferred seats.

To celebrate the new venue at BB Camp on Sunday, September 12, audience members will have a chance to purchase a picnic lunch from the BB Camp kitchen to enjoy on the lawn prior to the concert. Bring a blanket or sit on the benches and enjoy the lake view. Cost for the picnic lunch is $15.

The Festival's program is now posted to the website however, organizers stress that the schedule is subject to changes or adjustments dependent on many factors. To view the schedule and to purchase tickets, go to www.siletzbaymusic.org. Or call 541-264-5828.

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