Thanks to the Fine Arts Chamber Players' annual Basically Beethoven Festival, local music fans can get their classical fix this month in the midst of what is otherwise a pretty quiet summer on the classical calendar. Offering a free concert at Dallas City Performance Hall every Sunday in July, the Basically Beethoven Fest usually draws a pretty big crowd for its eclectic summer series. There's chamber music to catch in Fort Worth too, thanks to the Mimir Chamber Music Festival's enticing offerings at Texas Christian University (July 3-11).
Of course, if you're looking for some celebratory cymbal crashes and horn blasts to inspire a little holiday patriotism this weekend, there's plenty of bang to go along with your boom at outdoor concerts at both the Dallas Arboretum and Fort Worth Botanic Gardens. Here are the best ways to catch classical music in DFW this month:
July 2, 3 and 4: Fireworks With The Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra This annual holiday event is so popular, there are now three chances to catch fireworks and orchestral music at the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens. For this concert, expect to hear patriotic tunes, marches and salutes the way they were meant to be enjoyed -- performed by a live orchestra outside under the stars on a hot summer night. The concert starts at 8:15. You can get tickets for a table close to the stage, or bring a blanket and lounge on the lawn with a picnic. July 4th's concert has nearly sold out, but there are still plenty of tickets for July 2 and 3 if you don't mind celebrating America's birth a little early. Tickets range in price from $13-$46. For more information, visit the orchestra's website.
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July 3: Patriotic Picnicking With the Dallas Wind Symphony Lounge on the Dallas Arboretum's exquisite lawn overlooking White Rock Lake and enjoy a patriotic performance by Dallas' biggest, brassiest band. As always, this Thursday's "Cool Thursdays Concert" is BYO(Beer/Wine/Picnic). This week there's even a Founding Father's Costume Contest, so if you can stand the heat under that powdered wig, you could take home a prize. If the word "picnic" makes you panic (mosquitoes! sweat!), have no fear. You can catch the Dallas Wind Symphony's annual Star-Spangled Spectacular indoors at the Meyerson Symphony Center on July 4th at 1:00pm. Visit the Wind Symphony's website for tickets.
June 30 - July 11: The Mimir Chamber Music Festival Outstanding professional musicians and interesting, diverse programming make this festival a summer standout. Held annually at TCU in Fort Worth, the Mimir Festival celebrates chamber music new and old -- presenting works by Beethoven and Brahms alongside lesser known pieces by Salonen and Szymanowski. In addition to the five concerts presented during the festival, guest performers will also work with this year's Emerging Artists during master classes (open to the public). For a full list of events, visiting artists and to purchase tickets, visit the festival's website.
July 6, 13, 20 and 27: Basically Beethoven Presents Free Chamber Music at Dallas City Performance Hall Every summer, the Fine Arts Chamber Players put on a series of free, Sunday afternoon concerts that draw big crowds. The Basically Beethoven Festival is the perfect way to spend a relaxed Sunday afternoon and the concrete-walled, air-conditioned Dallas City Performance Hall is a perfectly cool, dark space to enjoy the music. The hall's doors open at 2:00pm every Sunday this month and at 2:30, a young, local "rising star" gives an opening performance. This year's concerts include the Wyeth Quartet performing works by Mozart, Herrmann and Beethoven, piano music by Columbian pianist Eduardo Rojas and SMU faculty member Carol Leone (she'll perform Beethoven's famous Moonlight Sonata), and music by The Orchard Ensemble and others. No tickets necessary. Just show up! For directions and more information, visit the FACP's website.