Plus Toe-Tapping and Sublime

The Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival goes on, rain or shine, from the end of this month through August. Brian Hatton

    For some, it is the uncontested beauty of the beaches or the allure of the nightlife. For others, it is the art galleries, which are burgeoning. But for an increasing number, a good reason to be on the South Fork in summer is music. Not only have Music to Know and Escape to New York sprouted, but concerts in classical genres have increased in number. Here is a roundup of concerts that are about to take the stage and some you still have time to catch, beginning with the less well known and ending with the long-established Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival.
    One of the newer series, Fridays at Six, is in its second year of 6 p.m.-to-dusk evenings of live music and take-your-own picnics. They are at the Peconic Land Trust’s Bridge Gardens in Bridgehampton. The Bridgehampton School Marimba Band is up for a performance tomorrow.
     The following Fridays, through Sept. 2, will bring the jazz and Latin sounds of Alfredo Merat, the Latin-influenced jazz of the Charles Certain Duo, the Southampton String Ensemble, and the classic rock and blues of Joe Hampton and the King Pins. Most of these groups will appear more than once; has the details.
    As if an outdoor picnic in extraordinary gardens with feel-good, toe-tapping music weren’t enough, however, here’s the price: $10 per person or $20 for a group of four. Bridge Gardens members get in free.
    Also in its second year is Guild Hall’s Midsummer Night’s Music series. Two concerts have already taken place: Savage Nightingale with Darynn Zimmer, soprano, Eliot Fisk, guitar, and other artists on July 10 and the Erica Trio on July 17.
    But the third and last will be on Sunday at 6:30 p.m., when Sophie Shao, cello, and Reiko Uchida, piano, take the stage. Ms. Shao is considered one of the leading cellists of her generation.
    Another new series, of three concerts, brought  the violinist and performance artist Han Bin to the Old Whalers Church in Sag Harbor on June 25. Produced by Young Concert Artists, the next program, featuring Jeanine De Bique, a prize-winning soprano, will be at 7 p.m. on July 30. The series will conclude with a recital by the pianist Gleb Ivanov on Aug. 27.
    Information on Young Concert Artists and these concerts can be found at or by calling Susan Blair at 324-3097.
    In its five years, the Vladimir Nielsen Piano Festival has gone from being a newbie to being a strong draw. It kicks off at Guild Hall in East Hampton on July 31 at 6 p.m.
    The festival is something like a smaller-size and younger Pianofest. Viktoria Mushkatkol is the artistic director of the festival, which was named after one of her teachers, a 20th-century Russian pianist. Young pianists from around the world are housed and study at the estate of Dr. Robert Maimone, the executive director of the foundation, at 64 Laurel Trail, Sag Harbor, where performances, with indoor and outdoor seating, take place.
    Recitals are scheduled on two Saturdays: a Night of Great Piano Concerti (played on two pianos) on Aug. 17, and a finale on Aug. 20. Tickets, at $15, will be available at the site, and more information is at or 899-4074.
    As for Pianofest, which is now in its 23rd year and has nurtured young pianists under the direction of Paul Schenly, its concerts will continue on Mondays until Aug. 8 at 4:30 p.m. in the Avram Theater at Stony Brook Southampton. On July 29, however, the concert will be at the relatively new venue of Hoie Hall at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in East Hampton. Mr. Schenly comments on the performances, which helps listeners gain insight into what it takes to be a professional. Tickets, at the door, cost $20 or $15 for senior citizens.
    The actress and singer Melissa Errico will perform on Saturday at a benefit for Pianofest at the Southampton Historical Museum. Tickets are $100. Ms. Errico will be accompanied by her father, Michael Errico. Details are at or 329-9115.
    The first part of the Perlman Music Program, the summer music school on Shelter Island for string players up to age 18, is under way, with its remaining “works-in-progress” concerts today, tomorrow, and July 27, 28, and 30 at 7:30 at the school’s campus at 73 Shore Road.
    The second part of the program, a Chamber Music Workshop, for string players and pianists over 18, has its Tutti Suonare Weekend on Aug. 12 at the Old Whalers Church in Sag Harbor and Aug. 13 at the Jewish Center of the Hamptons in East Hampton.
    Open master classes take place Aug. 15 through 19 at 7 p.m. at the campus. Toby Perlman is the director and founder, Itzhak Perlman, a violinist who hardly needs an introduction, is the workshop coach, and the faculty numbers 18, who are already well-established performers or expected to go on to major concert careers.
    The Perlman program also has a benefit on Saturday, and an alumni recital featuring Rachel Lee, a violinist, on Aug. 6. Information is at or 212-877-5045.
    The Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, which will run from July 28 to Aug. 21 this year, has been drawing significant audiences for 28 years under the artistic direction of the flutist Marya Martin.
    The festival always comes through with an incomparable roster of about 40 string, wind, brass, piano, and percussion players, many having appeared in previous years. The venue for most events is the Bridgehampton Presbyterian Church. Tickets generally range from $30 to $50, and details are at or 537-6368.
    New this year are two 6:30 p.m. Saturday soirées, designed to be about an hour in length to allow for dinner afterward. The weeknight concerts have been moved from Wednesdays to Thursdays.
    “Crossover” is a buzzword in music. The festival will open with a free outdoor concert at the Bridgehampton Historical Society next Thursday at which concertgoers will hear some of the first crossover pieces to incorporate jazz and classical music, from the 1970s.
    They are Claude Bolling’s Suite for Flute and Jazz Trio and his Suite for Violin and Jazz Trio. Here again, you are invited to take a picnic along. Although the event is free, reservations have been requested.
    As in previous years, the festival will have a benefit. In clever programming, on July 30 at the Atlantic Golf Club in Bridgehampton, the program will be Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons”  intertwined with Astor Piazzolla’s “The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires.”
    Then, on Aug. 12, for spice, the festival will bring the Stephane Wrembel Band to its annual Wm. Brian Little concert at the sculpture garden of the Channing Daughters Winery in Bridgehampton. This is a chance to hear Gypsy jazz on guitar, with double bass and washboard. Chamber music artists will also perform, including Ms. Martin. Tickets are either $100 or $150.
    For the unconventional among us, the Brooklyn Rider string quartet will return on Aug. 11 with a concert that includes a remembrance of Marvin Gaye by Don Byron, a Philip Glass quartet, and works by the quartet’s violinist Colin Jacobsen.
    However, for those of you who can’t get enough of the great, tried-and-true standards for which this festival is perhaps best known, Mozart, Schubert, Beethoven, Brahms, and Dvorak will be heard in abundance, along with contemporary composers such as Kenji Bunch, Luciano Berio, and Kevin Puts, at the Classic Six concerts on Sundays and Thursdays.
     One final note. Devotees of Music Festival of the Hamptons were saddened when Eleanor Sage Leonard, its founder and luminary, died in February. The festival’s board hopes to have a concert in her memory in September, and has started a scholarship in her name. Watch these pages as plans are finalized.