Strings Music Festival announces summer 2017 lineup |

Strings Music Festival announces summer 2017 lineup

Teresa Ristow

Mary Chapin Carpenter plays Strings Music Festival July 21.

— This summer's Strings Music Festival lineup features Grammy award-winning artists, country legends and a performance from Stephen Stills of Crosby, Stills Nash & Young fame, playing alongside "Judy Blue Eyes" muse Judy Collins.

Tickets for shows in the lineup, announced this week, go on sale to the general public April 25 and to Strings donors beginning April 11.

The summer season is also Strings' 30th anniversary of bringing classical music to Steamboat Springs, and the organization will celebrate during an anniversary concert in July and with classical performances including a Celebrate America! concert July 1 and Rhapsody in Blue: The Music of George Gershwin July 29.

Among the most notable "different tempo" artists booked are five-time Grammy winning country singer Mary Chapin Carpenter July 21, five-time Grammy winner Michael McDonald Aug. 20 and country veteran Tanya Tucker, who will play as part of a Brent Rowan & Friends performance July 2.

"I feel like we have a good mix of people who are pretty big names, and some up-and-comers who will be playing on bigger stages in the near future," said Kristine Kilbourne, Strings Music Festival marketing director.

Kilbourne said bluegrass group Chatham County Line will play at Strings on Friday, July 7, before heading to Red Rocks the following night to open for The Avett Brothers.

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Kilbourne pointed to the Aug. 3 Stephen Stills and Judy Collins performance as one highlight of the season.

"The two of them had a brief love affair, and the song 'Judy Blue Eyes' was named for Judy Collins," Kilbourne said. "They'll be together and telling stories and playing songs from their new album as well as past music."

Other different tempo concerts include Miami-based electronic/country/rockabilly band The Mavericks, a cappella gospel sextet Take 6 and jazz singer-songwriter Mandy Harvey.

On the classical side, the 30th anniversary celebration July 22 will bring back performers from decades past, Kilborne said, while the Celebrate America! show will be emceed by Steamboat-based sportscaster Verne Lundquist and preceded by a picnic in Strings Park.

The season is also packed with free yoga events in Strings Park, youth and family shows and Music on the Green at the Yampa River Botanic Park.

For anyone who can’t wait for summer to see some entertainment, Strings is hosting Broadway’s Next Hit Musical at 7 p.m. Friday, March 3. The show is billed as “the Tony Awards meets Whose Line is it Anyway?” and involves musicians taking audience suggestions for songs to make up, Kilbourne said.

“It’s really great improv,” she said.

To reserve tickets to the March 3 show or see the full schedule of this summer’s concerts, visit

To reach Teresa Ristow, call 970-871-4206, email or follow her on Twitter @TeresaRistow

String Music Festival Summer 2017

Classical and different tempo shows:

June 23: Morgan James

June 24: Opening night orchestra

June 28: A Night in Prague: Chamber Music

July 1: Celebrate America

July 2: Brent Rowan & Friends: Tanya Tucker

July 7: Chatham County Line

July 12: Parker Quartet

July 14: Mandy Harvey

July 21: Mary Chapin Carpenter

July 22: 30th Anniversary Celebration

July 26: Boston Brass “And the Nominees Are…”

July 29: Rhapsody in Blue: The Music of George Gershwin

July 30: The Mavericks

Aug. 2: Romantic Favorites from Mendelssohn and Chopin

Aug. 3: Stephen Stills and Judy Collins

Aug. 5: Strings Festival Orchestra Season Final

Aug. 8: Asleep at the Wheel

Aug. 11: Take 6

Aug. 16: Maceo Parker

Aug. 20: Michael McDonald