Ian Gottlieb, 2015:
Getting my work played by such an unreal Horn Quartet was a very special experience for me as a composer. The sounding board not only provided me the opportunity to incorporate important feedback into future iterations of my composition, but also provided me an excellent recording to showcase on my website. Additionally, I was smitten by the warmth of the Burlington community and their passion for classical music, especially my dear hosts, the Bergerons! Lastly, it was a pleasure to get to learn about fundraising from the inimitable John Canning, who is undoubtedly the most down to earth and approachable patron of the arts I’ve ever met.
Philip Golub, 2012:
This has been a week I will remember in detail for a very long time. I’ve learned a ton, all sorts of things, specific and general, both relating to composition and music itself and also concerning a skill set I feel much more aware of needing to cultivate now. Thank you for the commitment and care you put into the young composers, it’s really remarkable to feel that. Anyway, “special”, in every possible way, is the word I would use to describe the last nine days. A general great feeling carries over it all, so thanks for making that possible.
Andrés Martinez De Velasco, 2011:
When I was invited to the Lake Champlain Chamber Music Festival, I thought it would be a great experience but the reality of it far surpassed my expectations. It’s very rare that a composer as young as I am gets the opportunity to work with musicians of such a high level, and even rarer to find that those outstanding musicians are some of the kindest, most helpful and caring people around. Working with them on my own music really helped me realize my compositional strengths and weaknesses and being a part of the festival in general showed me what the reality of the music world is. It gave me a chance to see all the work that is required to put on a successful concert beyond the actual writing or playing of music; these are the types of things you don’t learn how to do at school such as giving lectures, pre-concert talks, preparing and setting up concerts, etc. The LCCMF was an amazing experience and challenge and I am looking forward to future encounters with all the people involved in it.
David Bloom, 2009:
Any music festival that breaks the standard model takes a significant risk, which is something I believe that the founders of Lake Champlain Chamber Music Festival knew very well. They whole-heartedly took the risk to innovate, breaking the traditional barriers to include students, actively involve audiences, and create intellectually stimulating programs.
As anyone who attended a part of LCCMF knows, these efforts were answered with great success. We packed the halls for every astonishing concert; we listened intently to the words of the musicians and asked them questions; the Vermont Youth Orchestra and the Young Writers Project became integral members of the festival. These were only a few of the successes that we enjoyed. Perhaps the most memorable parts of the week were the incredibly refined and moving performances, but they were by no means the most important. The most important aspect of this festival, I believe, was the ethic of community involvement that stood at the core of the festival’s mission.