Looking Back: 2021 CMS SPAC Residency
This summer the Saratoga Performing Arts Center partnered with Pitney Meadows Community Farm to bring back the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center for its annual Saratoga Springs residency. The new "CMS at the Meadows" series were the first live performances that SPAC presented since the 2020 season was cancelled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The performances, limited to 200 attendees per show, were held in Pitney Meadows Community Farm's beautiful open-air High Tunnel greenhouse, adhering to carefully mapped out, socially-distanced seating and rigorous COVID-19 protocols.
Among the many highlights of CMS at the Meadows was the SPAC preimere of the Calidore String Quartet who presented a program of Beethoven String Quartets on August 8, 2021. The concert featured the timeless Op. 95 "Serioso" and Op. 59, No. 3 "Razumovsky" Quartets.
A further highlight of the summer was a thrilling afternoon of piano music performed by Michael Stephen Brown, Gilles Vonsattel, Ursula Oppens, and Jerome Lowenthal. The program featured solo and four-hands works by Barber, Mendelssohn, Debussy, and Ravel, as well as the world preimere of Twelve Blocks composed by Michael Stephen Brown.
On June 13, 2021, CMS presented the program From Prague to Vienna featuring Dvořák's Terzetto in C major for Two Violins and Viola, Op. 74, and Mozart's Quintet in A major for Clarinet, Two Violins, Viola, and Cello, K. 581. The concert featured the first SPAC performances of new CMS Bowers Program members Stella Chen, and Sihao He.
The all-star ensemble of Wu Han, Arnaud Sussman, Paul Neubaer, and David Finckel delighted audiences with a program of Beethoven and Schumann on June 20, 2021.
Violinist Benjamin Beilman joined CMS Co-Artistic Directors David Finckel and Wu Han on August 29, 2021, to close the CMS SPAC season with a program of Schubert.