Let the Festivals Begin!

Summer Festivals abound, to the delight of tourists, and the chagrin of some residents.


This year, it’s been a mad scramble for funding and backers, and a year of new directors, new or fewer sponsors, and new realities on Newport’s summer festival scene, which is an enormous tourist draw for the city.


The Newport Music Festival (classical) is this year without major sponsor Yamaha pianos, which sponsor could be next? Management changes are rumored to be causing some bumps. Devotees of chamber music are quivering This year honors the hundredth year of a Festival favorite, Victor Borge. For a schedule and information, go to www.newportmusic.org.


The Snapple Music Festival is now the Nantucket Nectars Festival, The Newport Film Festival is opening for business on June 3 after a serious funding scare and under a new director, with an interesting alliance with New York’s Museum of Modern Art. Go to www.newportfilm.org. The Sunset Folk Festival is now the George Wein 50, and the prestigious Newport Jazz Festival is now the George Wein 55 (got that?), having lost its JVC sponsorship, and after Wein won a long wrangle with the current producers. It will take place from August 7 to 9.


Huey Lewis and the News will open The Nantucket Nectars Sunset Music Series, at the Newport Yachting Center on June 25. The series also includes Michael McDonald, Los Lobos (with the local Latin band Santa Mamba opening,) The Robert Cray Band, Chris Isaak July 29 and The Temptations Aug. 21. Tickets are available at the center or (401) 846-1600 or go to www.newportwaterfrontevents.com. You’ll also find information on the summer comedy series, which will feature Martin Short, a favorite of this writer, Joy Behar from “The View”, Carlos Mencia, from “The Mind of Mencia” on comedy central and other huge names in the genre.











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