33rd Budapest Spring Festival Starts On 22 March

  • 21 Mar 2013 8:01 AM
33rd Budapest Spring Festival Starts On 22 March
The 2013 Budapest Spring Festival may well be offering on its second weekend what can be considered a festival within the festival: the Budapest Festival Centre has organized a programme that is in harmony with the spirit of the Easter celebrations. In 2013 Hungary’s most prestigious arts festival will await its audience between 22 March and 7 April.

On Good Friday, the world-famous Collegium Vocale Gent will perform Bach’s St. Matthew Passion under the baton of Philippe Herreweghe. On Saturday, Christoph Prégardien, a splendid singer, will make a debut in Budapest as a conductor.

Having earned world-renown as the evangelists in Bach’s passions, in cooperation with such conductors as Kent Nagano, Riccardo Chailly, Philippe Herreweghe, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Fabio Luisi and Sir John Eliot Gardiner, in 2012 Prégardien decided to step on the podium and guide Le Concert Lorrain and the Nederlands Kamerkoor through Bach’s St. John Passion.

Following an international tour that led through Oslo, Vienna, Warsaw, Luxembourg, Amsterdam, Brussels, Bologna, Lucerne and Paris, the production promises to be a particularly exciting concert at Budapest’s “Easter Festival.” On Sunday, Marc Minkowski, a favourite with festival audiences, will conduct his own ensemble, the Les Musiciens du Louvre – Grenoble. Besides a beautiful mass by Mozart, the programme will include two magnificent cantatas of Bach, both composed for the Easter Sunday service.

While these three concerts feature the crème de la crème of old music, the other days of the festival will be no less star-studded. The wonderful French soprano, Patricia Petibon, who began her career in the world of old music and burst into world fame in the 1990s, will amaze her audience in the Palace of Arts with an evening of arias, where she will be accompanied by the Münchner Kammerorchester.

Usually shining in the operas of Rameau, Handel, Vivaldi and Mozart, the artist recently moved her audience in Berg’s Lulu. Her solo albums, so many thrilling selections from musical literature, have been enthusiastically received by professionals and lay audiences alike.

American violin virtuoso Joshua Bell returns to Budapest with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, performing Bruch’s Violin concerto. The splendid instrumentalist will also wield the baton – as did Maxim Vengerov at the last Spring Festival –, conducting a symphony each by Beethoven and Mendelssohn.

As with the 2012 László Lajtha concert, we again will have an opportunity to rediscover an important Hungarian composer. The accompanying music for Csongor and Tünde, this youthful gem by Leó Weiner, will be conducted by Balázs Kocsár, while the philosophic and poetic qualities of Vörösmarty’s drama will be conveyed by a special theatrical atmosphere and rich visuals, courtesy of dancer–choreographer Péter Gemza, and world-famous animated film director Marcell Jankovics.

Source: Budapest Spring Festival

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