Year after year, Taos is blessed with tried-and-true concerts and music festivals in many genres from big name performers to up and comers. Find your beat this fall and join us.
Taos Chamber Music Group begins 27th season
Chamber music, aka parlor music, has an inherently intimate nature. It’s classical music composed for a small group of instruments and musicians who can fit in a large room. Because of this, it is known as “the music of friends.”
Throughout its life, the Taos Chamber Music Group has tapped into the Land of Enchantment by presenting the imaginative and inspirational performances for which it has become known. Programs often reflect the beauty of the surroundings as well as the unique cultural diversity of the Taos area, earning TCMG a reputation as one of Northern New Mexico's most innovative and successful music series.
The Taos Chamber Music Group announces its 27th series of chamber music performances. The upcoming season will focus on chamber music’s younger voices, introducing Hub New Music who will perform pieces recently written for them; a Chatter concert of 21st century music, including works by Pulitzer Prize winners John Adams and Caroline Shaw; and an exuberant program of compositions written when composers were 30 and younger.
Violinist Laurie Carney of the American String Quartet will open TCMG's season with her elegant artistry, and another TCMG favorite, Gleb Ivanov, will be featured in an awe-inspiring solo piano concert as well as in a Russian chamber music program.
Widening the chamber music lens, TCMG brings “World Journey,” featuring Suzanne Teng and Gilbert Levy playing “music for the soul” on flutes, percussion and strings from around the globe. Shakespeare takes center stage in the season finale with music inspired by the bard and his words spoken by Taos thespian David Garver.
Concerts run from October through May and take place in the Arthur Bell Auditorium at the Harwood Museum of Art, where TCMG is the Resident Chamber Music Group. Performances begin at 5:30 p.m., so you can make an evening of it and enjoy a discounted dinner afterwards at one of the participating restaurants: Doc Martin’s, Lambert’s, Martyrs Steakhouse and The Gorge Bar and Grill.
Tickets go on sale in August at taoschambermusicgroup.org. Admission $25 adults, $20 Alliance members, $12/students.
Refer to the calendar in this publication for specific dates and performances.
Other big mountain sounds on the horizon
Turquoise fall is now. If cuttin’ a rug is on your agenda, get your kicks resoled and polished to a sheen. And get some new socks while you’re at it ‘cause you’re going to dance holes through ‘em.
Music from Angel Fire
For 36 years, Music from Angel Fire has shared the experience of chamber music throughout Northern New Mexico by presenting intimate performances and educational outreach activities by exceptional young artists and world-class musicians. Performances that began over the summer continue through Sept. 1. The season culminates with the annual Salon Concert, Sept. 1, 3 p.m. at the Angel Fire Community Center, 15 CS Ranch Road. For the remaining schedule, check the calendar listings in this publication or visit musicfromangelfire.org.
Yes, that Sting brings his “Sting: My Songs” tour to Taos Sept. 2 at Kit Carson Park for one of the most anticipated concerts of the year. Not surprisingly, the show is sold out. You could pay an exorbitant price for a ticket from a scalper. But one of the beauties of a small town is having a park in the middle of it with many restaurants in close proximity. You could get some beverages and noshes to go and stroll down the sidewalk, find a place to park yourself and no doubt you’ll be able to hear him perform under a crystal clear night sky. Special guest is Fantastic Negrito. The show starts at 7 p.m.
17th Annual Michael Hearne’s Big Barn Dance Festival
Another popular all-ages music explosion at Kit Carson Park is Michael Hearne’s Big Barn Dance Music Festival held Sept. 5-7. The 17th annual event continues its line-up of talent of some of the most well-respected names in country, Americana and folk music. The event also features up-and-coming songwriters, songwriting workshops, free dance lesson on Saturday morning, an art gallery strolls, camping and more. This year’s performers include the event’s namesake and founder Michael Hearne along with Beat Root Revival, Bill Hearne Trio, Chuck Cannon, Darrell Scott, Dead Dillon, Max Gomez, Peterson Brothers, Larry Joe Taylor and so many more. Tickets are available at the gate until sold out or online at bigbarndance.com and range from a single-day pass for $62, three-day pass for $141.99 and $25 for just the Barn Dance (around 7 p.m. on Saturday night, all chairs are cleared from the main tent, which is transformed into the biggest barn dance in the Southwest). For more information, visit bigbarndance.com.
2019 Big Barn Dance schedule:
Wednesday, Sept. 4, beginning at 4 p.m.
Taos Art Gallery Stroll with Michael Hearne & Friends
Join Michael Hearne and friends for an early evening of fine art and hospitality as he tours some of Taos’ favorite art galleries. With his guitar in tow, and Big Barn Dance artists trickling in, you can bet there will be some great tunes played at each stop. Free and open to all.
Thursday, Sept. 5, doors open at 12:30 p.m.
Michael Hearne & South by Southwest with Jimmy Stadler; Kelley Mickwee & Kylie Rae Harris; Zac Wilkerson; Larry Joe Taylor; Max Gomez; Walt Wilkins; Chuck Cannon; Ray Wylie Hubbard; and John Fullbright Band.
Friday, Sept. 6, doors open at 11 a.m.
Songwriting Workshop with Terri Hendrix & Lloyd Maines, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at the Taos Community Auditorium, $35 for Big Barn Dance ticket holders or $50 for non-ticket holders
Dance Lesson, 10-11:30 a.m. at the Dance Tent
Screening of “New Mexico Rain: The Story of Bill & Bonnie Hearne”
Music: Bill Hearne Trio; hONEy hoUSe; The Rifters; Shake Russell & Michael Hearne; Max Stalling Band; and Peterson Brothers.
Big Barn Dance: The Derailers; Gary P. Nunn; and South by Southwest and special guests.
Red River Folk Festival
Red River has been a home away from home for too many great musicians to list. The likes of Joe Ely, Delbert, Jerry Jeff and Guy Clark have all been through this old mining town. Locals like to revisit an old story about Neil Young spending time tuning up on the Motherlode stage. Just like the old expression says, “It goes to show you never can tell.”
These days, some folks continue carrying the musical torch in Red River. The annual Red River Folk Festival keeps that flame lit. This year’s event happens Sept. 19-22 at Brandenburg Park and several other Red River venues. The gate opens at 4 p.m. Performers include Bob Schneider, James McMurty, Dave Alvin and Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Esmé Patterson, Max Gomez and a half-dozen more. If music that originates in traditional popular culture or songs performed by custom over a long period of time is your thing, then the Red River Folk Festival is for you. Tickets for this all-ages event are available online at redriverfolk.com.
5th Annual Frank Morgan Taos Jazz Festival
Since 2015, this four-day, five-concert music spectacle has presented world-class jazz artists and attracted capacity crowds from far and wide. Presented by Taos Jazz Bebop Society, the festival was created to honor the late great alto saxophonist, Frank Morgan, who called Taos home later in life. Returning is saxophone star Grace Kelly, who became Morgan’s protégé at the age of 14. She has performed at the festival every year, wowing crowds. Also performing are Doug Lawrence, George Cables and Louis Hayes; Julian Pollack Trio; and the Pete Amahl Quartet. For ticket information, visit taosjazz.org.
2019 Frank Morgan Taos Jazz Festival schedule:
Wednesday, Nov. 20
Festival Kick-Off Party – free event
Pete Amahl Quartet featuring Christine Fawson
6:30-9:30 p.m., Adobe Bar at Taos Inn
Thursday, Nov. 21
George Cables 25th Anniversary Quartet
With Doug Lawrence, Louis Hayes, John Webber
7 p.m., Taos Community Auditorium
Friday, Nov. 22
Julian Pollack Trio
7 p.m., The Harwood Museum of Art
Saturday, Nov. 23
Grace Kelly Quartet– “My Tribute To Frank”
3 p.m., The Harwood Museum of Art
Grace Kelly’s “Joy Party”
7 p.m., Taos Mesa Brewing Mothership
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