Mission & History
Promote the appreciation of chamber music in the Methow Valley.
Why we care
We believe that great music can inspire people to great acts of compassion and kindness.
In today's technology-driven world, people crave deep, authentic, human experiences. Live chamber music, played by dedicated professionals, is the perfect antidote to the stress of modern life, and has been for centuries.
What we do
Our annual program brings in top-quality musicians from around the world to produce five summertime Centerstage concerts.
Where we do it
We hold summer Centerstage concerts at Signal Hill Ranch. In addition, we host performances and educational events throughout the Valley designed to maximize interaction between artists and audience.
Artistic director Kevin Krentz says, "The more we play in the community, the better we demonstrate the uplifting emotional appeal of live chamber music, a key component of our mission."
What it's like
At our intimate, chamber-sized performances you will hear top-quality live music; taste locally made food, wine, and beer; and see exquisite mountain scenery. You will experience the pleasure of dining with friends before the show and staying afterwards to meet our artists.
Each concert day we provide a free open rehearsal for families with young children and those unable to attend the evening concert.
Passing on the love of music
Each year we award four deserving college students the opportunity to participate in our festival. When they arrive, they receive coaching from our professional artists and play together in venues around the area as our Fellowship Quartet.
Receiving knowledge is not all that is required to become a great musician. One must also pass it on. In order to accomplish that goal, we schedule the Quartet to perform a short exhibition piece at the local summer music camp. Following that performance, the Quartet players "sit in" beside the younger summer camp students at their rehearsal. Imagine the feeling a young student would have, sitting next to a great musician, hearing the power of their instrument, and seeing up close their dedication to perfection.
Keeping tickets affordable
We are dedicated to making fine music accessible to everyone.
Ticket prices cover only one-quarter of the cost of each performance. The remaining funds are provided through the generosity of our donors combined with state and federal grants. Local students receive free and discounted tickets to the Centerstage concerts. All Fellowship Quartet performances around town are free.
History of the Festival
Est. 1996, in a lush, green meadow near Mazama.
A New Home
Sparling Family Generosity
The Festival barn theater now has a permanent, purpose-built stage. The new structure, designed by architect Howard Cherrigton specifically for the barn at Signal Hill Ranch, includes a stronger foundation capable of holding a full-sized, 9-foot grand piano, a completely smooth deck surface, and attractive fascia. In addition, portions of the new structure may be removed to make way for vehicles and other heavy equipment that occasionally needs to make its way backstage.
The stage design, foundation, and all materials and supplies necessary for its completion are a gift to the Festival from Howard and Elisabeth Johnson.