Metropolitan Opera Star Kate Aldrich Plus Concerts at Bigelow Labs Feature in DaPonte Summer Series

DaPonte String Quartet

The DaPonte String Quartet’s 26th Summer Season has treats in store for music lovers with two very different concerts: in July they’ll perform “More for Four,” four pieces that run the musical gamut from Beethoven to John Heiss; the August series “Innerscapes” features mezzo soprano Kate Aldrich, a Mid-coast Maine native who has become an international opera star. A final concert in Paris features non-vocal portions of both series.

This summer also sees the Quartet performing in new venues, including Bigelow Labs in E. Boothbay, the Alna Meetinghouse, as well as the Jewish Museum in Portland and the UUA Church in Brunswick--winter venues that are being used for the first time as summer spaces.

“More for Four” includes: Four, For Tango, by Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla, who is credited with inventing the “Nuevo Tango” by infusing the traditional tango with American jazz; Samuel Barber’s most famous piece, the excruciatingly moving Adagio from String Quartet;Heiss’s Microcosms, a witty and whimsical 10-minute delight; and Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 7 in F Major Op. 59 No. 1. It will be performed six times from July 3-18 in Rockport, E. Boothbay, So. Bristol, Brunswick, Stonington, and Portland.

Kate Aldrich

“Innerscapes,” with Guest Artist Kate Aldrich, consists of Samuel Barber’s Dover Beach Op. 3 and two Respighi pieces, Il Tramonto and Quartetto Dorico. Aldrich grew up in Damariscotta, and has since made a name for herself around the world as a mezzo soprano performing major roles in the world’s greatest opera houses (the Met, La Scala, San Francisco) with such opera greats (most recently) Placido Domingo.

“Aldrich is a superb performer who not only has a powerful, flexible voice,” wrote Portland Press Herald critic Allan Kozinn recently, “but is a master of inhabiting a character, whether on the opera stage or in a five-minute art song.”

“Innerscapes” will be performed five times from August 1-7 in Rockport, E. Boothbay, Wells, Alna and Brunswick. A final concert in August, without Ms.Aldrich, will feature Quartetto Dorico and the Beethoven quartet. It will be performed in Paris on the 11th.

Performances of “More For Four”:

July 3, 7:30 pm, Rockport: Opera House, 6 Central St. Tickets $30.
July 5, 7:30, E. Boothbay: Bigelow Labs, 60 Bigelow Dr. Tickets $30.
July 6, 7:30, So. Bristol: Union Church, Middle Rd./Rte 129. Tickets $30.
July 11, 7:30, Brunswick: Unitarian Church, 15 Pleasant St. Tickets $30.
July 13, 7:00, Stonington: Burnt Cove Church Community Ctr., Airport Rd. Tickets from Opera House Arts, 367-2788.
July 18, 7:30, Portland: ME Jewish Museum, 267 Congress St. Tickets $30.

Performances of "Innerscapes":

Aug. 1, 7:30 pm, Rockport: Opera House, 6 Central St. Tickets $30. 
Aug. 2, 7:30, E. Boothbay: Bigelow Labs, 60 Bigelow Dr. Tickets $30.
Aug. 3, 7:00, Wells: Wells Reserve at Laudholm, 342 Laudholm Farm Road. Tickets from 646-4521.
Aug. 4, 7:00, Alna, Alna Meeting House, 1789 Alna Rd. Tickets $ 30.
Aug. 7, 7:30, Brunswick: Unitarian Church, 15 Pleasant St. Tickets $30
Aug. 11, 7:00, Paris: First Baptist Church, Paris Hill Rd. (No guest artist: Respighi Quartetto Dorico and Beethoven quartet only). Tickets $20 at door. Info: 754-7970.

The DaPonte String Quartet, Maine’s premier string ensemble, moved to Maine more than 20 years ago and now performs over 60 times a year, year round, from Presque Isle to Ogunquit. Last year it celebrated its 25th year as a string quartet.

Individual and series tickets are available at Tickets to some concerts are also for sale at Gulf of Maine Books, Brunswick; Sherman’s Books in Damariscotta and Boothbay Harbor. Information at 529-4555.

Phot by Peter Felsenthal: DaPonte String Quartet
Photo: Kate Aldrich