Bethesda Summer Music Festival to showcase young D.C. talent

Natalie Tomlin, special to

WASHINGTON – This summer marks the 11th season of the Bethesda Summer Music Festival, a two-week intensive workshop for young vocal professionals and high school and college students.

George Mason University Professor of voice and Artistic Director of the festival Mira Yang created the program in 2002 to share her love of music with students and the community. The Bethesda Summer Music Festival allows local artists to gain experience and learn from older vocalists without having to travel far from home to attend this type of program.

“They can learn behind the scenes what it really takes to put a production together,” Yang says. “Some children, especially little ones, come through our program very shy, not willing to speak up. But once they go through this process they are the first ones to raise their hands.”

After auditioning this past spring, Maddy Paulson, who will be attending the University of Maryland in the fall, is returning for a second summer at the festival. She will join about 60 others in the festival’s two-week run.

“It’s always wonderful to have the opportunity to perform