Every year, conductors and musicians from around the world congregate in Kiev, Ukraine, for the International Conductors’ Festival (ICF). But in 2016, for the first time, the ICF will also come to Danville, with festival events taking place throughout the community July 18-30.
Jaemi Loeb (above), assistant professor of music at Centre and director of the ICF at Danville, was inspired to bring the festival stateside after attending ICF-Kiev in 2013. She is excited about what hosting the ICF will mean for Centre and Danville.
“It has been a real thrill to watch the excitement and anticipation around the community build, and a joy to see how much support for the arts and cultural exchange that we have in town,” Loeb says. “With an international group of about 40 musicians staying in town for two weeks, Danville and the surrounding area are going to very lively places in July.”
The ICF, presented by Bluegrass Community Bank, is both a classical music festival for the public as well as a symposium on conducting for musicians. Guest conductors from across the world will offer workshops and activities for music lovers of all ages, and they will also lead concerts performed by the Piccadilly Symphony Orchestra (PSO) from Manchester, England, the ICF orchestra in residence this summer.
Festivities kick off with an event at Bluegrass Community Bank on Monday, July 18 from 5 to 7 p.m., where the PSO will play live music.
Other free concerts include one on Friday, July 22 at 8 p.m. in Centre’s Weisiger Theatre and another on Saturday, July 23 at 6 p.m. at the Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill. One repertoire—which includes the works of such classical greats as Mendelssohn, Mozart, Schubert and Beethoven, as well as premieres of new pieces by contemporary artists—will be played by the PSO on both nights, but with a different conductor leading the way each time, the music is sure to come to life uniquely each evening.
Another free concert will be performed on Friday, July 29 at 8 p.m. at Weisiger Theatre, and the grand finale of the festival will take place on Saturday, July 30 at 7 p.m. at the Wilderness Trail Distillery.
Loeb hopes that these concerts will attract a variety of people from the surrounding community.
“My biggest hope is that we are able to make a difference by making great live music accessible to everyone,” she says.
by Elizabeth Trollinger
July 14, 2016