Attendance increases 250 percent at music festival on North Shore |

Attendance increases 250 percent at music festival on North Shore

The Lake Tahoe Music Festival wrapped its 25th anniversary “Season of Classics” with a standing ovation, record-setting crowds, a new home venue and sold-out performances during its three-week run.

Attendance grew by 250 percent for the 2007 festival, entertaining music lovers from throughout Lake Tahoe, Reno and Northern California. The 2007 festival offered nine concerts at five venues, incorporating classic Beethoven, classic jazz, classic rock and classic Broadway.

“Festival attendance surpassed our expectations this year making our 25th anniversary truly stellar,” said executive director Ellen Persa. “The incredible lineup of talent and excitement within the region fueled tremendous growth for us that we hope to continue to build upon for the 2008 season. The word is out about the festival, and we’re beginning to draw larger crowds from outside the area as well. The commitment from the Lake Tahoe community and its summer visitors to the arts allows the festival to continue to raise the bar, showcasing a mix of musical styles and well-loved artists.”

The 2007 festival included headline performances by Kenny Loggins, David Benoit, Craig Chaquico and David Sanborn, and noteworthy renditions by the Lake Tahoe Music Festival Orchestra, led by maestro Timm Rolek. In addition, the festival settled into a new home at Homewood Mountain Resort, awaiting construction of a hillside amphitheater in the planning stages for 2010. Homewood Mountain Resort owner JMA Ventures LLC of San Francisco is building the amphitheater. The venue will balance the natural features of the land, while providing concertgoers a comfortable setting to enjoy performances.

“A performance venue of this sort has been sorely needed on the West Shore for some time,” Persa said. “It’s an amazing gift.”

The festival’s outreach efforts also grew this year, with the management of the Truckee Youth Music Program that began at Truckee Elementary School this fall. Through its educational outreach programs, the festival aids young musicians and emerging ensembles by offering training, guidance and assistance with concert presentation, and has expanded the program to include free lessons and musical instruments to qualified elementary school students year-round.

Plans for the 2008 Lake Tahoe Music Festival are under way, with more performances in the works, including a new collaboration with the Reno Philharmonic Orchestra. The orchestra will play the festival’s 2008 season-opening concert on Saturday, July 19, at Homewood, along with other Festival concerts continuing through the finale on Saturday, Aug. 9.

For more information about the Festival, visit or call (530) 583-3101.

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