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World-Renowned Musicians Gather in Kingston for Enchanting Ensembles

The Kingston Chamber Music Festival’s 35th season celebrates works new and old


No need to drive to a big city to hear some of the finest musicians this summer – renowned and award-winning artists assemble at the University of Rhode Island for the 35th annual Kingston Chamber Music Festival (KCMF). Set against our state’s coastal spoils, historic New England charm, and bustling culinary scene, there’s never been a better time to vacation locally – while experiencing world-class entertainment.

Carrying on the original mission of founder David Kim, current artistic director Natalie Zhu strives to bring together internationally acclaimed musicians to southern Rhode Island in an inspired, collaborative setting. “Being able to work with some of the best musicians in the world on a regular basis never gets old, and KCMF consistently has some of the very best,” says Grammy-winning guitarist Jason Vieaux. “This event has been one of my favorites to look forward to for years now, and it’s a thrill to be back.”

Vieaux will take the stage at this year’s KCMF, along with a lineup of other esteemed talent including the Dover Quartet, oboist Richard Woodhams, French cellist and composer Dominique de Williencourt, wind instrumentalist David Shifrin, and – making her debut at KCMF – pianist Amy Yang.

“Some festivals feature established chamber ensembles whose identity is known as a group. At Kingston, we do something different,” says executive director Beth Etter. “We select from all over the world the finest musicians, many of whom have not played together. We ask them to perform repertoire they’ve not performed. We bring them all to the URI campus, and ask them to create something extraordinary. In the space of a few days, each musician brings their skill, creativity, respect for others, and devotion to create an irresistible, one-of-a-kind performance that can never be heard again.”

With a theme of “Something Old, Something New,” this summer’s programming spans the 1700s to the 2020s, offering a mix of beloved classics, original works by living composers, and new arrangements of rarely performed pieces that will surprise and delight. The community is also invited to engage with the work by attending open rehearsals Saturday mornings and Meet the Artist series featuring interviews with the artists.

In the words of one of this year’s violinists, Jasmine Lin, “Expect to have your socks knocked off. The performers are exceptional artists and human beings with charm to burn, and the programs contain some of the most ravishing music in the world.”

The Kingston Chamber Music Festival’s seven-concert series runs July 26 through August 6. Tickets are currently on sale; call 401-308-3614 or visit KingstonChamberMusic.org for event details, ticketing, and venues.


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