by Robert Bell
HOT SPRINGS MUSIC FESTIVAL
Various times and locations in Hot Springs. $5-$15.
Now in its 17th year, the Hot Springs Music Festival — which started Sunday and runs through June 16 — gives classical fans in Central Arkansas the opportunity to see accomplished musicians from all over the world perform alongside budding players.
The festival features lectures, as well as 20 official concerts and more than 250 open rehearsals, at which the professionals mentor the young up-and-comers. Much of the festival is broadcast on KLRE 90.5 and recorded for release on CD on the Naxos/Marco Polo label.
Some of the featured performers this year include Rick "Mr. CutTime" Robinson and The Cassatt String Quartet. Described on its website as being "serious in focus but casual in atmosphere," the festival takes place at several venues in Hot Springs.
Wednesday's concert is at the Hot Springs Fieldhouse. A pre-concert talk starts at 6:30 p.m., with the Festival Symphony Orchestra starting at 7:30 p.m., performing music by Rachmaninoff, Paganini, Charles Ives and more. Tickets are $5 for students and veterans and $15 for others. Check the website to find the full schedule.