"World Stars & Best Local Talent" - Tons of Open-Air Premieres on Margaret Island

  • 24 May 2022 11:29 AM
"World Stars & Best Local Talent" - Tons of Open-Air Premieres on Margaret Island
This season the open-air stage on Margaret Island is set to host a wide range of world-renown stars and well-known Hungarian artists.

As in previous seasons, the theatre continues its mission to draw local and international audiences to Budapest with its artistic repertoire, which is significant and mainstream in an international sense as well.

The line-up includes Aida Garifullina, Maria Agresta, Francesco Meli, Victor Solomon, Pier Giorgio Morandi, Eszter Sümegi, Gábor Bretz, and Mihály Kálmándy.

The operas Tosca and Attila, the musicals Stonehearted – The Baradlay Legend and Mozart!, as well as The Gospel of Mary, the release of the album Esthajanal (Dusk), a Pink Martini concert. And that is not all!

“For the open-air summer festival, Margaret Island Theatre is preparing to throw open its gates to international and Hungarian artists while still paying attention to high quality. After all, we could say our audience has come to expect that of us,” states Teodóra Bán, manager and artistic director of Margaret Island Theatre.

She added: “We shall host many internationally renowned artists and even more home-grown talent. Our goal this year is to open our doors again to the Hungarian public and international spectators alike. After all, Budapest, together with its lush Margaret Island, occupies a distinguished place on the map of Europe as a destination for culture and tourism.”

Original stage productions

Margaret Island has created its own productions and dramatically staged shows, operating also in co-productions with respected professional partners such as the Hungarian State Opera House and the National Philharmonic, besides others.

Among this year’s premieres are new stagings of Tosca and Attila, as well as the popularly hailed Opera Gala – Best Opera Songs featuring a world-famous soprano. One of the summer’s most exciting premieres will be the musical Stonehearted – the Baradlay Legend, dreamed up by Vajk Szente. 

Also featured are the musicals Mozart! (in a co-production with the Petőfi Theatre of Veszprém), The Gospel of Mary, and Elisabeth, which arrives from Kecskemét.  These musical spectacles are to be realized on Margaret Island with remarkable casts filled with the best singers from the country’s musical community.

Anniversaries and album releases

Founding member of the former Ghymes ensemble, Tamás Szarka will hold a concert to debut his album entitled Esthajnal (Dusk) together with the songwriter’s band Parno Graszt – featuring songs never heard before, the actor Gábor Reviczky, and star vocalist Gabi Tóth. Ferenc Fegya Jávori and the Budapest Klezmer Band will hold a concert of their lifework. Additionally, the Saint Ephraim Male Choir will celebrate their grand 20th anniversary with a 400-member chorus and joined by star guest Viktor Solomon.

Also, the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra will commemorate the 35th anniversary of their formation, dedicated to their gypsy prima violinist founder László Berki, on Margaret Island’s imposing stage. The first program in May will present the history of the group Irie Maffia, similarly celebrating an anniversary, with a symphonic concert.

They are followed by the returning Magashegyi Underground formation. Popular performer Miklós Fenyő, who is 75 this year, will perform on Margaret Island for the 25th occasion!

Earlier opening, pre- and post-season

Margaret Island Theatre’s season has expanded to include four months’ worth of programs. Check out the theatre’s website, www.margitszigetiszinhaz.hu, for information on events.

Classical confections

The featured artist for this year’s traditional Opera Gala will be none other than Placidó Domingo’s discovery and partner, the enchanting and justly world-famous soprano Aida Garifullina. The conductor for the evening will be Pier Giorgo Morandi, who regularly conducts in the world’s most extraordinary opera houses.

Francesco Meli, the exceptionally talented tenor with a fabulous career, will perform Puccini’s Tocsa, together with our local stars: Eszter Sümegi and Mihály Kálmándy. After 18 years, a new production of Verdi’s Attila, a sweeping opera with a connection to Hungary, will occupy its rightful place on the main stage of Margaret Island.

Debuting in the title role as King of the Huns will be Gábor Bretz, a constant guest of international stages, who has won over our country’s opera fans with his commanding voice and character. He will be joined in the role of Odabella, daughter of the Lord of Aquileia, by the dazzling Maria Agresta, whose appearances in the world’s most respected venues are always crowned with success. Meanwhile opening concert by the National Philharmonic Orchestra will be on stage, conducted by Domonkos Héja.

Music, leisure, and summer chill-out

Stars in nearly every genre of popular music will shine on this stage with a grand past. Besides great returning artists such as Miklós Fenyő, László Dés, Péter Geszti, Caramel, and Budapest Bár, a party atmosphere will be provided by Irie Maffia, the Magashegyi Underground, Magna Cum Laude, and the Cotton Club Singers. Also in the summer of 2022, Pink Martini will return after three years to invigorate the Margaret Island audience.

In 2022 as well, Margaret Island Theatre  invites visitors to the heart of Budapest on an exciting journey and adventure. This venue, the summer theatre of Margaret Island – nestled in the island’s incomparable natural setting, boasting amazing features and proportions, a 3,000-person auditorium, a theatre boat shuttle and wharf, in addition to the registered Water Tower, which also serves as an exhibition space – provides an impressive home for artists and demanding, culture-hungry audiences alike.

More details about productions:

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