Stratford, ON – Mark Fewer, Artistic Director of Stratford Summer Music (SSM), has announced the programming for the music festival’s 21st season. This years’ season will light up Stratford indoors and outdoors from August 5th to the 29th.
Mark Fewer spoke about this season: “We’re thrilled to announce our 2021 season offerings! After what has seemed like an endless road of twists and turns these last months, we’ve arrived at the point where we can tell everyone our line-up of artists and events. A quick look at our brochure will reveal some familiar faces, some new discoveries, and plenty of music to raise our spirits! Most of our more than 40 events will take place outdoors with a handful of indoor events that will be captured and streamed live online as well as being in person for limited audiences. We can’t wait to get started! See you in Stratford – for the music – in August!”
Stratford Summer Music is thrilled to return to some of their favourite venues like Avondale and Revival House. This season, they will partner with two new venues, Gallery Stratford and the Stratford Perth Museum. General Manager Kendra Fry says “these new venues have been a real boon to our planning this year, allowing us to create safe and inclusive events that can welcome more people to SSM.” Both stages are newly- built outdoor venues and there will be a wide variety of programs to enjoy.
New this year, SSM will be hosting hybrid concerts with in-person seating and live streaming tickets available. These concerts will allow more music lovers to enjoy live concerts and support Stratford Summer Music, however they are comfortable to do so. The hybrid concerts are Opening Night with Isabel Bayrakdarian and Gryphon Trio and the Friday Night Live at Revival series. Viewing access will be available for one week following the scheduled performance to ensure maximum access for patrons.
Opening Night with Isabel Bayrakdarian and Gryphon Trio, August 5
Always a hit with SSM audiences, Isabel Bayrakdarian returns for our opening night spectacular alongside Canadian music icons the Gryphon Trio (making their SSM debut!), violist Sharon Wei and SSM’s Artistic Director, Mark Fewer. Music by Johannes Brahms, arrangements by Peter Teifenbach and more! Celebrate the opening of Stratford Summer Music’s season on August 5th. Tickets to stream this event online are also available
Friday Night Live at Revival
Don’t miss these four memorable Friday nights at Revival House with some fantastic performances. In person attendance is at 9pm while online streaming will be available for a week after the event.
Thompson Egbo-Egbo, August 6
Known for his generosity of spirit with other musicians, Thompson Egbo-Egbo’s album “A New Standard” was hailed by Canadian Beats magazine as ‘a brilliant display of creativity, keen diversity and expert arranging.’ SSM Debut Performance!
Heather Bambrick, August 13
Heather Bambrick has been with us at SSM on several occasions over the years, and there’s a reason why! Her generous vibe from the stage is infectious, her singing powerful, and her story-telling – well, she’s a Newfoundlander! Joining her on the piano is Aaron Davis, who, when not trotting around the world with Holly Cole or Measha Brueggergosman, now calls Stratford home.
Liala Biali, August 27
Our final weekend begins with superstar singer-songwriter, pianist, Juno winner, and CBC Radio host Laila Biali – this time in the intimate setting of Revival House! Not to be missed!
The Swinging Belles, August 8 at The Shed at Gallery Stratford
Juno winners for best children’s album, The Swinging Belles are devoted to bringing the fun of swing music to children – and children of all ages! You may recognize the guitarist of this group, Duane Andrews, as he performed for us back in 2019 at Revival House to a standing ovation.
TorQ Percussion Quartet, August 14 at Stratford Market Square
TorQ Percussion Quartet returning to SSM this year are the sensational talents of TorQ Percussion Quartet. This special outdoor performance will be, uh…loud! Described as “outstanding – no, make that astonishing!” (Ottawa Citizen) and as having a “sense of unbreakable continuity and energy” (Toronto Star), Canada’s TorQ Percussion Quartet continues to bring new vitality to percussion repertoire and performance. This is a free event.
TRIBUTE – Man of a Thousand Song, August 14 at the Stratford Perth Museum Stage
With a voice that distinguishes itself with honesty and power, Damhnait Doyle makes her SSM debut with a performance in tribute to fellow Newfoundlander and Labradorian legend Ron Hynes. Not to be missed! The Stratford-Perth Museum will have beverages available for purchase and Ken’s French Fries foodtruck will be onsite prior to the concert.
Young Artist Showcase, August 21 at The Shed at Gallery Stratford
Our new Young Artist showcase puts stars-in-the-making with established professionals, side by side in intimate performance settings. This summer, we celebrate the accomplishments of local cellist Vanny Hu, a student from Stratford District Secondary School! After a solo feature, she will perform alongside clarinetist James Campbell (Member of the Order of Canada), members of INNERchamber ensemble, and our own AD Mark Fewer with music to soothe the soul – Mozart’s sublime Clarinet Quintet.
Infusion Baroque, August 21 at the Avondale
Infusion Baroque – “Virtuosa” Each member of this all female ensemble is a virtuosa. This special program features musical works written for or by women in the 17th and 18th centuries. Infusion Baroque is a cutting- edge early music experience.
Stewart Goodyear, August 28 at the Avondale
Pianist Stewart Goodyear has accomplished what only a few have ever dared attempt – record the entire catalogue of Beethoven’s works for piano(!). For his SSM debut, he performs an all- Beethoven program for us. Hopefully the first of many happy returns for this stellar artist.
Season Finale with Jens Lindemann, August 29 at the Avondale
Despite Covid constraints, this multiple award-winning musician continues to perform, record and connect music lovers around the world. Headlining our 2021 Grand Finale concert, Jens Lindemann and Brassfire will thrill you with new arrangements of favourites by Tommy Dorsey, Oscar Peterson, Duke Ellington and more.
For a full schedule of performances and to purchase tickets please visit stratfordsummermusic.ca or call the Box Office at (519) 271-2101 Ex 5. Tickets will be on sale to the general public on July 12.