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  • West Branch Music Festival For 01-Jun-2010

    Posted on 01-Jun-2010 by Matt Batschelet


    Media Contacts:
    Odin Rathnam
    Artistic Director
    West Branch International Music Festival & Academy

    Michele Conrad
    Executive Director

    Matt Batschelet
    General Manager/owner
    West Branch Resort


    Catskills Classical Music Festival a Rare (but Reasonable) Indulgence

    West Branch International Music Festival & Academy brings outstanding concert programs to one of the Catskills’ premier resort communities

    Hancock, NY (MMD Newswire) June xx, 2010 - - If your idea of culture in the Catskills consists of old-time crooners and hammy comedians – or if you’re one of those who think that “culture in the Catskills” is an oxymoron – think again. Thanks to the vision of one passionate violinist, and a resort owner who knows a good thing when he hears one, this storied tourist destination is playing host to some of the best of the best in classical music this summer.

    That’s right: classical. After assembling some of his most distinguished colleagues, founder and Artistic Director Odin Rathnam, the renowned violinist, has put together the annual (and privately funded) West Branch International Music Festival and Academy, with world-class performances of music carefully selected to take audiences on a musical journey through time, from Europe to South America, resulting in concerts that are as varied as they are exciting.

    The festival begins July 18 and runs through August 1, 2010, with performances held in the main room of the West Branch Resort’s River Run Restaurant, whose 30 foot vaulted ceilings and hardwood and stone surfaces provide superb acoustics. Orchestral programs will take place at the lovely Hancock Area High School auditorium. Repertoires will include Grieg, Mozart, Sibelius and more.

    Michele Conrad, Executive Director of the WBIMF&A says, “In addition to the distinguished Faculty/Artist chamber music programs, we have the pleasure of presenting two chamber music programs performed by Academy students. These outstanding young artists, selected from leading conservatories in the US and abroad, represent the next generation of classical artists. It is an important part of the Festival/Academy’s vision to train and work with these talented students, addressing a broad range of issues as they relate to the creative process. All concerts, including those by Academy students, will be recorded for future broadcast.”

    A complete schedule of programs, as well as advance ticket sales (strongly recommended), can be found at Optional Festival Getaway packages including fishing, sporting clays, lodging, meals, and concert packages are also offered by the West Branch Resort. Concert ticket prices are very attractive, starting at only five dollars, with the highest prices being thirty dollars for chamber music concerts with included receptions. Limited at-the-door tickets are also available, but not recommended, as full houses are expected.

    Founder Rathnam is passionate about this event and sees it as a harbinger of bigger and better things to come. “We have huge hopes for this festival,” he says, “not only that it will be a richly rewarding experience for all who participate and attend, while giving a much-needed boost to the economy here – but we also want to see if the model we have established will work on a larger scale. We think it might be catalytic to a whole new type of program in the U.S.”

    In more ways than one, the West Branch Festival just could be musical history in the making.

    For more information or to purchase advance tickets, visit the festival website at


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