The Savannah Music Festival, already one of the largest and most influential in the U.S., is getting even bigger in 2018 with the addition of two new venues, specially commissioned works and an all-day festival finale.
The festival, which runs March 29 through April 14, features robust selections of classical, jazz, international, Americana and folk music. On Thursday, festival officials announced the artist lineup and some programming details. Among the Americana and roots music stars showing up for the 29th edition of the festival are Jason Isbell, Gillian Welch, Rhiannon Giddens, Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn, Rosanne Cash and John Leventhal, Rhonda Vincent & The Rage and the Paul Thorn Band with the Blind Boys of Alabama.
Jazz artists coming next year include Bill Frisell and Julian Lage, Alphonso Horne, Terell Stafford, Lonnie Smith and others. The festival celebrates the 50th anniversary of Savannah’s Benedetto Guitars with a concert featuring Pat Martino, Howard Alden, Chico Pinheiro, Romero Lubambo and “King” Solomon Hicks. Etienne Charles returns for a double bill with Charleston’s Gullah folk-jazz band Ranky Tanky.
Violinist Daniel Hope, in his 15th season as associate artistic director, is bringing artists such as Murray Perahia, Robert McDuffie, Pinchas Zukerman, Marc-Andre Hamelin and musical theater star Audra McDonald, among many others. The annual chamber music series includes a three-concert residency for the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, joined by several soloists. The series will present Alan Fletcher’s Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, co-commissioned by the festival, Zurich Chamber Orchestra and the New Century Chamber Orchestra. Hope will perform the work.
The festival this time around will put two new venues to use: the newly renovated event spaces at Trustees’ Garden and the concert hall at the new…