Alpine High

Verbier Festival and Academy

If the geranium-decorated ski chalets in Verbier, Switzerland—above the Val de Bagnes in the Alps southeast of Montreux—begin to pall, try some of the splendidly impromptu pleasures of the Verbier Festival and Academy (July 20-August 5). Among the musical offerings: chanteuse Ute Lemper will do her Weill stuff on July 21, dashing Norwegian pianist Leif Ove Andsnes will play Schubert and Schumann on July 27, and poetic British cellist Steven Isserlis will play Britten and Shostakovich on August 1. As for the Academy, the new Verbier Festival Youth Orchestra will be led on July 30 in a concert of Stravinsky and Tchaikovsky by conductor Kent Nagano.