Mensa Sonora Part I in D Major

Heinrich Biber

Impromptu for String Orchestra

Jean Sibelius

Five Tangos for Violin and Bass Duet

Astor Piazzolla

Snow Prayer for String Orchestra

Kevin Kaukl

Thursday May 2 – Basalt Regional Library, Basalt 7:00 PM

Saturday May 4 – Old Thompson Barn, River Valley Ranch, Carbondale 5:00 PM

Sunday May  5 – Aspen Chapel, Aspen  4:00 PM

Who We Are

The High Country Sinfonia (HCS) is a small chamber orchestra comprised of semiprofessional and professional musicians in the Roaring Fork Valley. We perform without a conductor. An appointed concertmaster leads the ensemble in rehearsals and concerts, and section principals lead their respective sections.

HCS musicians have formal training in their instrument and orchestral/ensemble experience in the classical repertoire. Prospective members submit a resume; we do not hold auditions. Our Board, with input from HCS members, welcomes qualified new players.


Wendy Larson – Founder / Executive Director
Liz Bokram – Treasurer
Lorraine Curry – Secretary
Stephanie Zaza
Nancy Thomas
Bonnie Kowar
Sarah Graf
Camille Backman


HCS schedules two concert “seasons” a year, with 2-3 performances each— ideally, one set in the fall (September–November) and a second set in the spring (April–May). Each set of performances is scheduled over a week period. 

We strive to give high quality performances and to appeal to a general concert-going public. Concerts are one hour or less and take place in public venues throughout the Roaring Fork Valley.

The Board, with input from members, sets the program for each season. Members submit repertoire suggestions in the fall and spring before each programming meeting.


The High Country Sinfonia was founded in the spring of 2015 by Wendy Larson, a musician, teacher, and conductor in Colorado’s Roaring Fork Valley. Wendy recruited local musicians to form the all‐volunteer group to rehearse and perform works from the classical string orchestra literature.

Just a few weeks later, eleven players presented the first Sinfonia concerts on June 7 and 8, 2015, playing an all‐Bach program in Basalt and Aspen. The Sinfonia soon attracted additional experienced musicians: retired professionals, freelancers, teachers, and several past students or employees of the Aspen Music Festival and School. All had formal training in their instrument and experience playing the string ensemble repertoire.

The Sinfonia was designed to rehearse and perform without a conductor. While relying on the concertmaster or a soloist to lead rehearsals and performances, the collaborative process invited all players to contribute their expertise and experience in the service of the music at hand.

The ensemble quickly grew to perform two concert series each year in the spring and fall. For each concert series, two or three performances were planned to occur in different venues throughout the valley. Since 2015, the Sinfonia has presented 15 concerts of 8 different programs.

The Sinfonia has performed a wide range of music, from the Renaissance to the Contemporary, from Matthew Locke to Piazzolla—with Bach, Mozart, Debussy, Elgar, Holst, Britten, and many others between. Invited guests and members have performed solo works with the Sinfonia, among them works for solo voice, piano, organ, trumpet, cello, and violin. The Sinfonia has also collaborated with other groups, including two longtime local organizations, the Aspen Choral Society and Symphony in the Valley.

In early 2021, the Sinfonia established its non-profit corporate status as a 501c3 business. A board was established to oversee administrative tasks, including programming, fundraising, and marketing with the aim to increase the Sinfonia’s musical offerings, expand its audience, and continue to offer all concerts free of charge.

High Country Sinfonia Program History

June 7-8, 2015

Bach: Orchestral Suite No. 3 
Bach: Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 

February 28-29, 2016

Mozart: Church Sonatas for Organ
Susan Nicholson, Organ

Vivaldi: Concerto No. 4 for Violin in F minor, “Winter”
Audrey Kwong, violin

Bach: Concerto for Two Violins in D minor “the Bach Double”
Richie Zah, violin and Brittni Brown, violin

October 23, 2016

Vivaldi: Concerto for Violin & Cello in B-flat major
Brittni Brown, violin and Sarah Graf, cello

Bartók: Rumanian Folk Dances

Copland: Quiet City

Vivaldi: Concerto for Violin in F major, “Fall”
Suzanne Porter, violin

May  8-9, 2017

Vivaldi: Concerto No. 1 for Violin in E major, “Spring”
Gaia Vazquez, violin

Britten: Simple Symphony

Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante
Brittni Brown, violin and Erin Gallagher, viola

October 29-30 & November 2, 2017

Mozart: Divertimento

Boccherini: Concerto for Cello in B-flat major, “Adagio”
Sarah Graf, Cello

Vivaldi: Concerto  for Violin in G minor, “Summer”
Audrey Kwong, violin

Holst: St. Paul’s Suite


April 22,23, 26, 2018

Vivaldi: Concerto for Two Cellos,  in G minor
Sara Graf, cello and Maren Quanbeck, cello

Locke:  Tempest

Lowry: Romanza for 4 Violas

Grieg: Holberg Suite

May  10-12, 2019

Rutter: Mass of the Children
in collaboration with Symphony in the Valley & Aspen Choral Society

Mozart: Divertimento

Bach: Orchestral Suite No. 3

Bartók: Rumanian  Dances

October 20, 21, 24, 2019

Elgar: Serenade

Albinoni: Sonata  for Trumpet
Rob Merritt, trumpet

Piazzolla: Oblivion for 4 Violas
Arranged by HCS Violist NancyThomas

Bach: Brandenburg Concerto No. 3

May 21-23, 2021

Bach: Vivace from Concerto for Two Violins in D minor
Katie Ralston, violin and Emily Acri, violins

Suk: Andante con moto from Serenade for Strings

Haydn: Concerto #2 for Cello in D Major
Roberto Arundale, cello

Britten: Simple Symphony

Beethoven: Ode to Joy from Symphony No. 9

October 21, 23, 24, 2021

Handel: Concerto Grosso No. 1 in G Major

Vivaldi: Nulla in Mundo Pax Sincera
Emily Burr, soprano

Tchaikovsky: Serenade for Strings

Montgomery (Jessie): Strum

May 12, 14, 15, 2022

Vivaldi: Concerto for Cello in B minor
Sarah Graf, cello

The Piano Guys: Cello Song

Rossini: William Tell Overture (chorale)

Hindemith: Trauermusik
Jalen Lee, viola

Warlock (Peter): Capriol Suite

Croad (Libby): Suite for String Orchestra

October 20, 22, 23, 2022

Grainger (Percy): Irish Tune from County Derry

Barber: Adagio for Strings

Borodin: Polovtsian Dances from “Prince Igor”

Bach: The Little Fugue

Vivaldi: Sinfonia in G Major

Glass: Arioso for Strings

Villa-Lobos: Aria from Bacchianas Brasilieras No. 5

May 4, 6, 7, 2023

Tchaikovsky: Choral from 1812 Overture

C.P.E. Bach: Sinfonia #2 in B flat Major

Chopin: Concerto #1 for Piano in E minor
Kevin Kaukl, piano

Oct 18, 19, 21 2023

Saariaho:  Dolce Tormento
Shelley Warren, piccolo

Mahler: Adagietto from Symphony No. 5 in C# minor

Bach:  Coffee Cantata BWV 211 in G major
Beth Noble, Soprano
Katie Hone Wiltgen, Tenor


High Country Sinfonia  is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
All gifts are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Checks may be sent to HIgh Country Sinfonia, PO Box 694, Basalt, CO 81621. Or donate via Paypal  below.

Wendy Larson

High Country Sinfonia

PO Box 694
Basalt, CO 81621

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