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The Chamber Music Festival

Some people say that music alone can take raise people up, that it can affect memory and emotion, and that it can even heal the spirit. For at least forty years, the Telluride Chamber Music Festival has been enchanting the town of Telluride with its concert pieces and doing all of the above.

It’s a small affair, but a powerful one.

The festival was founded by Roy Malan, who also serves as artistic director. Malan studied with greats like Yehudi Menuhin, Efrem Zimbalist, and Ivan Galamia. His resume is impressive, and his vision helps to make the Telluride Chamber Music Festival what it always has been and what it continues to be today. Others who play in the Telluride Chamber Music Festival have equally astounding resumes, and the collaboration of all is nothing short of heavenly.

The festival itself usually spans a few consecutive weekends in early August. With music events on Thursdays, Fridays, and Sundays, Telluride Chamber Music delivers up concertos, sonatas, quartets, and quintets for the listening pleasure of all in appreciation. You’ll hear the violin, cello, piano, and clarinet, and harmonies that will stir the soul. They have been known to play all of the legends: Mozart, Brahm, Bach, Vivaldi, and others, and it is magic to hear these amazing pieces recreated for the experience at 9,000 feet.

The kickoff begins in the town’s park and involves a picnic and a free outdoor concert. Set in the beauty of the Telluride Town Park, the mountains reflect the divinity of this incredible music. Picnic foods are not provided, but audiences can and should bring their own cheese, wine, and truffles. Other concert events happen at the historic Sheridan Opera House. The acoustics are quite fine and the décor might even take you back a century. Tickets for all events that are not free are $25.

Feel free to dress up a bit, but you won’t see the likes of New York City attire despite the New York City quality of music you are bound to experience. This is Telluride, and even for the fanciest of dinners in the finest of Telluride restaurants, you are likely to find some people in casual dress. It’s acceptable here.

Telluride Chamber Music also involves the young people too, and it does offer a free concert to all children from pre-school aged to high-school aged. This concert is actually free for adults who accompany a child, and the event includes the opportunity to meet the musicians after the concert. Here, the discussion of the music is carried forward, and young people can ask questions. Ice cream is served afterward.

This festival is a non-profit and relies on the kindness of its generous supporters. It really is the donations that keep the Telluride Chamber Music Festival a living, breathing, creative organism.  The Telluride Foundation, Arts and Special Events, as well as Commission for Community Assistance all contribute to making sure the festival goes on. Contributions can be made through email or by phone.

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