NAPA: The 2018 Festival Napa Valley is a ten-day celebration of art, music, dance, theater, cuisine and, of course, wine. This 13th annual festival, took place July 20-29, 2018, and was truly an inspiring celebration combining the arts of winemaking and culinary expertise with preeminent classical music performances.
The event curates breathtaking a wine country lifestyle with a big city arts scene. Exclusive engagements by classical, opera, and dance artists guests shouting bravo for the artists and the breathtaking scenery.
Once again this year, Festival Napa Valley exceeds already high expectations. Attendees tasted the finest cuisine and wine at vintner luncheons and winemaker dinners while rubbing elbows with Napa Valley winemaking elite. All of this swirled with amazing performances, many of them, once in a lifetime experiences.
Guests attending Festival Napa Valley were treated to a spectacular experience that teased their palates and left them wanting for more.
2018 Festival Napa Valley Opening Night
The 2018 Festival Napa Valley festival kicked off at Meadowood. The setting could not have been more perfect. Greenery all around, a giant weeping willow, stages set up around the impromptu outdoor dining venue, elegant and delicious cuisine. Guests stroll along the croquet grassy knoll, through a promenade set up on the golf course with a glass of crisp and refreshing Domaine Carneros sparkling wine as they stroll along a grassy knoll, through a promenade set up on the golf course, before reaching the performance space.
The Domaine Carneros is an incomparable wine dinner this evening paired with a dazzling alfresco celebration and performance by two singing sensations: soprano Nadine Sierra and tenor Jonathan Tetelman.
Standout Performances & Events
Grand Cru is not only for French wine, it is also the title of a spectacular piano-led evening at Castello di Amorosa. This evening was for lovers of piano music. This concert experience was held in the beautiful courtyard of the castle showcasing the Gold Medalists from three of the world’s most prestigious piano competitions. The pianists each played a concerto with the Blackburn Music Academy Orchestra under the baton of Martin West.
A personal favorite was Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 2 performed by Fejérvári.
Jazzy Fresh in the Castle.
The evening was sweltering, and so was the music. Ten-time Grammy Award winner Arturo Sandoval trumpeted, danced on the keys and wiggled his way into our hearts. When you see Sandoval perform, you swear he has no age. He captures time and place and holds it hostage with a simple puff of his cheeks.
It is challenging not to stand up and shake your booty at this show. Even Sandoval himself can be seen shaking his rump to the hot Cuban Jazz sounds dancing off the stage.
Bernstein Centennial –
The festival celebrated Leonard Bernstein’s career with music from two of the American master’s signature works: West Side Story and On The Waterfront. West Side Story was the 1957 musical that gave birth to such beautiful songs as “Maria,” “Tonight,” and “Somewhere.” Bernstein is spoken in the same breath with such greats as Gershwin and Porter.
And this year, what would have been Bernstein’s 100th birthday, Festival Napa Valley gave a salute to the composer.
Featuring performances by Michael Fabiano and Larisa Martinez, Festival Napa Valley veterans, it was exceptional to hear the songs we all know so well, sung in an operatic style. With such a magnificent career, certainly, the celebration could have lasted the entire day, if not the entire festival.
Nowhere in the world quite like the Napa Valley and no festival quite like Festival Napa Valley.
Take pause when you are there to look around, appreciate where you are, what you are watching and listening. And, of course, what you are tasting. You will feel truly blessed to be there.
Save the date for next year’s festival: July 12-21 2019. Visit the festival website for the full schedule and to purchase tickets, which always sell out well before the event.
The 2019 Season is currently on sale with advance purchase through August 15, 2018. Buy now and save 25% on multi-day passes.