Henry David Thoreau, bard of the wild and a man who heard music in everything, wrote about both with rapture. "Music is perpetual," he opined. "We need the tonic of wildness," he observed. Thoreau never set foot at the Luzerne Music Center, having died 118 years before its founding in 1980 — an unfortunate misalignment of history. But to hear Elizabeth Pitcairn talk about the camp she heads is to hear echoes of Thoreauvian wisdom, drawing out an idyllic hub in the woods that stages world-class music with a sylvan backdrop.
On the program are works by Schubert (Impromptu for piano in C minor Op. 90, No. 1), Bach (Double Concerto for Two Violins and Orchestra) and Schubert (Piano Quintet in E-flat Major Op. 44). Among the musicians slated to perform are violinist and City Ballet concertmaster Arturo Delmoni, violist Michael Roth and cellist Sarah Hewitt-Roth — joined by pianist Glen Inanga and Pitcairn herself, a globally concertizing soloist who plays the famed Stradivarius also known as the "Red Violin" when she isn't running Luzerne as president and artistic director.
She and Inanga, both Luzerne alums, are just two among the many former campers who return as faculty and performers. "I think all of our artists who come and participate — they must love has been it, because they want to come back every year," Pitcairn says.
Also packed into the Luzerne Music Center performance season are six faculty recitals and 24 — count 'em — free student concerts. In addition, the center hosts off-site performances at the town of Lake Luzerne Pavilion Park on July 30 and, on two Wednesdays that follow, SPAC Young Artist shows July 31 and Aug. 7.