“Leading a festival-planning organization during a pandemic that has crippled events worldwide demands a special level of courage, clarity and resiliency,” writes Amanda Grosvenor in Thursday’s (7/8) Newport Life (RI). “If [new executive director] Gillian Friedman Fox is able to replicate the type of visionary success she achieved in launching the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s SOLUNA festival, then Newport Music Festival should be well-positioned to attract new audiences and launch new creative endeavors, too…. Fox’s extensive music industry connections are obviously beneficial, as is her ability to think quickly on her feet…. Fox knows that what makes NMF so unique is attending classical music concerts in more intimate settings such as historic mansions. ‘There’s something really magical about experiencing this high quality of classical music with only 200–300 other people, instead of the 2,000–3,000 you would at a symphony hall,’ she says. This summer’s festival takes place outdoors with limited capacity and social distancing … The festival is … commissioning new works of music by artists who are under-represented … starting with a piece written by female composer Stacy Garrop and inspired by the Castle Hill Lighthouse and its role in protecting Newport for more than 130 years.”