The third week of the Eastern Music Festival began with music by Ervin Schulhoff, Ernö Dohnányi and Igor Stravinsky, presented by the Eastern Chamber Players. Tenor Anthony Griffey and pianist James Giles, both of whom are products of High Point public schools, gave a recital of songs, Lieder and mélodies (and more) that delighted a substantial Dana Auditorium audience. Cellist Xavier Phillips joined the Eastern Philharmonic for Shostakovich’s searing Cello Concerto No. 1, preceded by the Meistersinger Prelude and capped with Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony. Stefan Sanderling, who led an equally inspired performance of Shostakovich’s Eleventh Symphony with the N.C. Symphony last October, was the distinguished guest conductor.

Coming up in the final week of the EMF are the last hurrahs from the students: chamber music programs on July 26 at 8 p.m. and July 27 at 1:30 p.m., 16 piano students in their big bash on July 27 at 8 p.m., and brass and percussion students on July 27 at 8 p.m. The parade of visitors continues on July 26 with violinist Pinchas Zukerman of Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra and some of his hotshot protégés, appearing as the Zukerman ChamberPlayers. There’s rivalry in the music business, so you can bet many EMF students will be checking out the competition. Principal Conductor Gerard Schwarz leads EMF concerto competition winners on July 28, and the Festival Orchestras conclude their season under the batons of José-Luis Novo and Scott Sandmeier on the afternoon of July 29. The EMF ends with an appealing program by the Eastern Philharmonic under Schwarz on July 29 at 2:30 p.m. Pianist Garrick Ohlsson (who offers a master class at 4 p.m. on July 28) is the soloist in Mozart’s “Coronation” Concerto, and Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 is the grand finale. For more information on these and other EMF events, visit

Recommended Reviews

Hometown Boys Strut their Stuff on EMF’s Friends and Great Performers Series, by William Thomas Walker

Stefan Sanderling and Xavier Phillips at the EMF: Mastery and Virtuosity, by William Thomas Walker

NOTE: For reviews of the final concerts of this summer’s Eastern Music Festival, see CVNC’s previews of local classical music concerts will resume in the Independent in late August.