Steamboat’s Strings celebrates 35th summer with Brent Rowan this weekend

Frankenstein, Brent Rowan concerts set for Saturday, Sunday

Brent Rowan, right, and country star Joe Nichols perform during the Navigator Awards at the Strings Music Pavilion.
Matt Stensland/Courtesy photo

Strings Music Festival has two events coming up this weekend as it celebrates its 35th summer of music and entertainment.

The festival will stream the 1931 movie “Frankenstein” with accompanying music from the Strings Festival Orchestra at 7 p.m., Saturday, July 2. The weekend will conclude with a performance from Brent Rowan with Hall of Fame songwriter Steve Dorff at 7 p.m. on Sunday, July 3.

Greg Hamilton, marketing director for the Strings Music Festival, explained that “Frankenstein” will be projected in their concert hall.

“We are having a full orchestra perform the original score to the movie,” Hamilton said. “So, that’s a different event for us. This can be a lot of fun.”

There will be 15 musicians on stage, who will play along with the projection to highlight the iconic imagery and lines.

“I think that’s just going to be kind of a fun, different sort of evening out on Fourth of July weekend,” Hamilton said.

Tickets to watch this classic horror film with the accompanying orchestra start at $48, and can be purchased at

The Sunday concert will be a change of gears from the goosebump-inducing film and score — Brent Rowan and Steve Dorff will perform a country concert in a classic rock fashion.

Hamilton explained that Rowan is “a beloved, regular performer” for Strings.

“He does call Steamboat home, but he’s kind of like Nashville royalty,” he said.

He’s recorded thousands of studio sessions, played on film soundtracks and worked with artists such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, Olivia Newton-John, Sting and Neil Diamond.

“Every year, he calls on his buddies from his days recording in Nashville, and they take the stage and spin yarns of the glory days and then perform some music,” Hamilton said.

This year, country songwriter Steve Dorff will accompany Rowan on stage. He has been nominated for multiple Grammy and Emmy awards, and was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2018.

“He’s written songs that have been performed by pop performers like Kenny Rogers, Barbra Streisand, Garth Brooks, Celine Dion,” Hamilton said.

Hamilton added that it will be a night of music and two friends telling stories about their time in the music industry. 

It will be “like being around a campfire with him or sitting in the living room and hearing him tell jokes and just kind of give you a behind the scenes of what it’s like to be a Nashville recording artist,” Hamilton added.

Tickets for the Sunday show begin at $75, and can also be purchased at the Strings Music Festival website.

The Strings Music Festival was founded in 1988, and has only grown in size and scope since then.

A core mission for the organization is making the majority of their programming free to the community, said Hamilton, such as the Music on the Green events at the Botanic Park.

“We love to do those kinds of free programs that give the community an opportunity to check out our music,” he said.

Hamilton added that Strings seeks to make music accessible and bring all-star artists and musicians to Colorado when they otherwise may not have.

“We’ve got this amazing acoustic concert hall that’s designed for chamber music and classical music, which is very demanding,” he said. “So, to build a concert hall around those types of music, but then also do double duty to have popular music in there is a nice opportunity.”

“What has been built at Strings over 35 years is this attempt to bring music to all tastes and all budgets,” he added.

More concerts are to come for the festival’s eight-week season, with a performance from Kenny G July 8 and Judy Collins July 22.

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