It's billed as "the world's first portable chamber concert."
It's hard to verify that, but even if the claim is hyperbole, the Forward Festival is definitely distinctive.
Sybarite5, an acclaimed string quartet that's known for playing everything from Mozart to Radiohead, is the force behind the festival. The group's aim is to tour the country with the chamber festival.
They raised money through a Kickstarter campaign, and they're launching the festival Tuesdayin Sarasota. They'll present five concerts over six days, at various locations around Sarasota.
Sybarite5 themselves will perform the first concert, at First Church. They'll also appear at a Gala Concert that ends the festival on May 11 in Holley Hall at the Beatrice Friedman Symphony Center.
Other artists in the festival include cellist Abe Feder (May 7), The Chroma Quartet (May 8), mezzo-soprano Bythe Giassert with pianist Djordje Nesic and members of Sybarite5, and the Chroma Quartet (May 9).
The Gala Finale Concert on May 11 features Sybarite5, the Chroma Quartet, Gaissert, Nesic, harpist Cheryl Losey and percussionist George Nickson.
Besides the great lineup, one noteworthy aspect of the festival is that ticket prices for most concerts are affordable -- less than $30 for all but the gala finale.
Details: May 6-11, various locations. Show times: 7 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday, 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Tickets: $28.30-$122.25; festival passes $223.49. Information: www.forwardmusicfest.com.
-- Marty Clear