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Music in Aspen Abounds: Everything You Need to Know - The Festivals

Posted: 4 Feb 2014

(This week, we conclude a two-part series on music in Aspen, Colorado. This week's blog - part two - spotlights the wonderful festivals that feature live music. Want info on some great venue for live music in the area throughout the year? See part one of this blog, which ran last week.) When it comes to live music and music festivals, Aspen, Colorado, offers a year-around selection ranging from classical to contemporary, and from up-and-comers to music legends. The town offers a number of great music festivals, and this week our blog team runs down the can't-miss list - basically everything you need to know to plan that amazing Aspen vacation, summer or winter.

THE FESTIVALS You can't start a list about festivals in town without first mentioning the Aspen Music Festival and School (AMFS). The AMFS is the nation's premier classical musical festival, with over 300 musical events during the summer season. Top musicians from around the world visit the AMFS and perform. More than 600 students from more than 30 countries come to Aspen annual to study with the AMFS's renowned alumni. (Many of these prodigies have already begun their professional careers - and all of them are rising stars!) Performances are held at a variety of locations around Aspen:

  • The Benedict Music Tent, 980 N. 3rd St.
  • Kaye Music Garden, just outside the Benedict Music Tent
  • David Karetsky Music Lawn, just outside the Benedict Music Tent
  • The Joan and Irving Harris Concert Hall, 960 N. 3rd St.
  • The Matthew and Carolyn Bucksbaum Campus, Castle Creek Road just outside of Aspen

All of the events at the Kaye Music Garden and David Karetsky Music Lawn are free. For more information, contact the AMFS box office at (970) 925-9042. Another popular summer festival that draws huge crowds is Jazz Aspen Snowmass (JAS). JAS presents major summer concerts with music icons, but also offers smaller festivals and special events, educational programs and the popular JAS downstairs at the Little Nell. If you're in Aspen, be sure to check the latest happenings with these events:

  • June Fest Lawn Party - June
  • Snowmass Summer of Free Music - June-July
  • Jazz Aspen Snowmass Summer Benefit - July

The Snowmass Mammoth Festival is quickly becoming another can't-miss summer event. Typically slated for mid-June, this weekend event features live music, chili tastings and beer tastings, among other shenanigans:

  • aEUoeChili Showcase DayaEU
  • aEUoeGrand Beer TastingaEU
  • Parade
  • Kid's Area (*new for 2014)
  • Late-Night Shows

The 2014 music line-up includes headlining bands Leftover Salmon, and Chris Robinson & the Brotherhood.