Intermezzo: An Afternoon of Aria and Song

When: Sun., June 3, 5 p.m. 2012

Artistic overload? Sore feet? After hot-footing it all day up and down the peninsula in your hopeless festival quest to "see it all," the evergreen Intermezzi series offers four choice late-afternoon chances to cool your overheated heels while feeding your ever-hungry ears for a pleasant hour — before you must gird up your loins to tackle whatever heavier evening fare is in store. Again this year, the venues are varied, but centrally located.

No ear need go unpleased. Programs with members of the formidable Spoleto Festival Orchestra include the series opener, offering a concerto plus favorites from Stravinsky and Wagner. The third program will be Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire, his mesmerizing classic for voice and instrumental ensemble that employs the weird-sounding "Sprechstimme" (speak-voice) technique. The second program, a perennial festival fave, will be the usual recital of arias and songs performed by lead singers from festival opera productions, in this case, Philip Glass' Kepler.

Taste of China. And, in a totally fresh (and refreshing) twist, the series finale will offer the radically different sound-world of traditional Chinese instruments (dizi, sheng, pipa, erhu), played to perfection by a quartet of virtuosos drawn from the Feng Yi Ting orchestra. They'll offer a survey of Chinese classics both old and new.

Lindsay Koob

Price: $25

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