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Fri, Jul 14

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Russell County

Ad Astra Music Festival

Ad Astra Music Festival is kicking off their 10th season running from July 14th - July 30th! Starting with a festival favorite and Victoria-native Matthew Piatt in recital with San Francisco-based soprano Elisa Sunshine at St. John Lutheran Church on Friday, July 14.

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Ad Astra Music Festival
Ad Astra Music Festival

Time & Location

Jul 14, 2023, 7:30 PM – Jul 30, 2023, 4:00 PM

Russell County, Russell County, KS, USA

About the Event

Ad Astra Music Festival is kicking off their 10th season running from July 14th - July 30th! Starting with a festival favorite and Victoria-native Matthew Piatt in recital with San Francisco-based soprano Elisa Sunshine at St. John Lutheran Church on Friday, July 14. Building on the success of last year's musical The Fantasticks, the festival will present two performances of Next to Normal in concert with Broadway veterans Julie Foldesi and Trey Ellett leading the cast, which includes Russell-native Nathan Hilger, Sterling College students Mary Little and Noah Svaty and 2023 Hays High graduate Seth Tripp. Performances are July 15 and 16 at the Russell Elks Lodge.

The second weekend, the festival dips their toes into the world of avant garde with a mid-century modern work, Stimmung. Written by German composer Karlheinz Stockhausen using six voices and electronics, it explores space, sound and connection and will be led by Co-Artistic Director John Irving. On Saturday, July 22, the festival continues with the annual Jazz at the Barn featuring Russell-native Brad Dawson at Granny Mae's Barn. Wrapping up the second weekend, audiences can experience the Kansas premiere of the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for Music, Navajo composer Raven Chacon's Voiceless Mass. Written for organ, string quartet, clarinets, flute and percussion, this work will be conducted by frequent festival violist and member of the Kansas City Symphony Julius Adams.

Ad Astra will cap their tenth season with their largest-scale project to date, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony at St. Mary Queen of Angels Catholic Church. The full orchestra, chorus and soloists will perform this famous work with a new Kansas-themed text by Catherine Treischmann. Led by first time Ad Astra conductor Anna Lenti, with soloists Katelyn Mattson, who played Trudy Furney in the world premiere of Our Trudy at Prairiesta, and Kyle Van Schoonhoven, who made his debut at The Metropolitan Opera in April. Audiences can hear the Beethoven on Friday, July 28 and Sunday, July 30.

Ad Astra Music Festival's founding Artistic Director and Russell-native Alex Underwood said, "We knew we wanted to be ambitious for our tenth season, especially as we are coming out of our post-pandemic funk. This season has something for everyone: jazz, musical theatre, standard classical music and brand new art music. The festival is unique for rural communities like Russell and I hope that everyone gets a chance to experience at least one of the performances we've curated for our audiences this July."

For more information or to get involved, check out the Ad Astra website at www.adastramusicfestival.org where tickets will be on sale beginning June 15.

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