Four Fun and Free Ways to Hear Classical Music in Dallas' Arts District This Week

You don't have to buy tickets, put on a tie or step foot in a concert hall to hear some great classical music in Dallas this week. In fact, half of these eclectic concerts take place outdoors, so you can soak up the fleeting Texas spring and catch some stunning musical chops on your lunch break. Here's how:

Brown Bag It On Wednesday, March 20, the Dallas Opera continues its brownbags@theopera series with a free outdoor lunchtime concert in front of the Winspear Opera House. Food trucks will be on hand if you decide to let your packed lunch languish another day in the office fridge where it belongs, and there is no shortage of perfect picnic spots in Sammons Park. Local SMU graduate student and mezzo-soprano Rachel Alexander is this week's guest soloist.

Opera Idol Inside the Winspear Opera House on Saturday, 21 young vocalists, all with Texas ties, will fight it out in Dallas Opera Guild's annual vocal competition and take home some serious cash. The vocal competition is free and open to the public, so you can pop in anytime and join the prestigious panel of judges in hearing some of the country's most promising opera stars. If you love what you hear, make sure to pick up a secret ballot and vote in the People's Choice Awards. You can help a hopeful future star get their career started (and shore up their bank account).

Harp Duo Just down the street from the Winspear, the Fine Arts Chamber Players continue their Bancroft Family concerts series in the Dallas Museum of Arts' Horchow auditorium. Seats at these concerts always fill up quickly, so even though the concert starts Saturday at 3, you'll want to be there when the doors open at 2:30 to grab a spot. On the program this week is a harp duo. Because what's better than one harp? Exactly. Two harps. (Three harps, you say? Are you mad?)

The Logan and Walters Harp Duo will perform a wide selection of music, ranging from Haydn and Brahms to Duke Ellington.

Bridging the Gap Dallas' innovative chamber music group, Bridge the Gap, is launching its Klyde Warren "Lawn Concerts" series this Saturday at 3 p.m. BtG is a group of musicians dedicated to bringing the concert music they love -- instrumental and vocal classical and jazz music -- to audiences in accessible, decidedly not stuffy environments. For this inaugural concert, SMU's Meadows Jazz Ensemble will be on hand to serenade your Frisbee game.

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