On That Note: Summer Festivals

Aug 7, 2018

Every month, we talk with our contributor, cellist Robert Cohen, about life as a touring classical musician. He is a former member of a Milwaukee-based ensemble and spent time here each year, even as he maintained (and still maintains) a household in England and various tours around the world.

This month we catch Cohen at his home in London in between music festival appearances. Summer festivals are a staple in a classical musician’s calendar, and he says it’s always interesting to play at them because often you not only have to learn new music, you must learn the festival itself.

"I wonder how it’s going to be before I go," says Cohen. "Not only the music I’ve got to play, but you never know what the feeling is going to be at each festival. Because usually the feeling, the ambience, of the festival is created by the character of the director."