By Sally Neel
Mountain Light Music Festival
On Aug. 6 at 7 p.m., the Mountain Light Music Festival (MLMF) will present a fabulous movie-themed concert at beautiful Keyah Grande.
The concert will feature the sonorous tones of the MLMF Trombone Choir in an evening of movie-themed music. With faculty professors from Baylor University, University of Alabama, and University of Texas El Paso, along with other professional musicians and students, the concert will include a stunning virtuosic rendering of music from “Superman,” “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” “Ben Hur,” “Green Hornet” and “JFK.”
Concert tickets are $35 each and may be purchased online at mountainlightmusicfestival.com. Beer and wine will be available for purchase at the event.
Five years ago, Pagosa Springs audiences were delighted to hear an exciting brass concert by The Baylor Brass, an outstanding quintet of professional brass players, led by Brent Phillips, trombone professor at Baylor University. They came to Pagosa to initiate a dream, the MLMF. The goal was to establish an annual week-long music festival and workshop for college-level brass players, along with their professional mentors, and to bring fabulous music concerts to our community. In cooperation with local patron Chet Russel, these musicians continue to hold their festival at Russel’s beautiful venue atop Cade Mountain.
Thanks to the generosity of enthusiastic audiences, patrons and the cooperation of our local chamber of commerce, local businesses and city officials, the yearly musical experience has met and exceeded all expectations, bringing talented students from across the country to work with some of the nation’s top brass players, hone their musical skills, learn new literature and strive to meet their most challenging goals. The exciting finale is a concert of brass music presented to the Pagosa Springs community, the quality of which equals any you will hear in the large city concert halls.
The festival is more than making music in a pretty place, however. There is a spiritual element to it as well. During the course of the week, the musicians go on hikes, go fishing in trout streams and, through interactions with fellow musicians, explore the deeper spiritual aspects of making music.
Certainly, most musicians do not devote their lives to music for the potentially large financial rewards. There is something far deeper, more satisfying about the work and ultimate glory of making music. According to Abby, one of the student attendees of the MLMF, “The true beauty of music is that it connects people. It carries a message. And we, the musicians, are the messengers.”
Mountain Light Music is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. Donations are welcomed and tax deductible. Donors will be invited to an exclusive concert and reception event on Cade Mountain on Aug. 5. For more information, call Carol Larsen at (214) 649-5041.