The 42nd edition of the Bologna Festival, from April to November, with its series Grandi Interpreti, Talenti, Il Nuovo l’Antico and Carteggi Musicali presents the most successful European orchestras, outstanding performers and conductors, crossing different repertoires, especially the symphonic, entrusted to ensembles such as Le Concert des Nations, Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Orchester des Champs-Elysées, Les Musiciens du Louvre and the new Peace Orchestra Project. On the podium, conductors of reference such as Jordi Savall, Philippe Herreweghe, Marc Minkowski. Among the great guest performers of the 2023 edition we find Martha Argerich, Angela Hewitt, Stefano Bollani, Seong-Jin Cho, the mezzo-soprano Ann Hallenberg, the violinist Isabelle Faust in quintet. As a prelude to the season, the cycle of meetings Musical cards offers cultural insights related to the concert programs, involving well-known music communicators.
The Great Interpreters serie opens on 2 April with Jordi Savall and his ensembles the Capella Reial de Catalunya and Le Concert des Nations. Today increasingly sought after as an orchestra conductor, Savall conducts three different Stabat Mater (Charpentier, Scarlatti, Pergolesi). Angela Hewitt, for the first time at the Bologna Festival, will play Bach, Scarlatti and Mozart, while Stefano Bollani, with a sonic imagination that knows no bounds, will improvise on classical, jazz and pop themes with virtuosity and irreverence. Ann Hallenberg, internationally renowned baroque voice, sings arias by Händel, Porpora and Vivaldi together with the early music ensemble Concerto de’ Cavalieri directed by Marcello Di Lisa. Pianist Seong-Jin Cho plays Chopin and Mozart together with the brilliant Academy of St Martin in the Fields, while cellist Adreas Brantelid, under the direction of Philippe Herreweghe, interprets Haydn’s Concerto in C major with sure originality. Marc Minkowski conducts his Musiciens du Louvre in Mozart’s last three symphonies. At the end of the season, the violinist Isabelle Faust returns to the Bologna Festival for a “Schumann Marathon” together with Anne Katharina Schreiber (violin), Antoine Tamestit (viola), Jean-Guihen Queyras (cello) and Alexander Melnikov (fortepiano).
The Talents chamber music festival takes place open air from 13 June to 3 July, in the enchanting cloister of the Basilica of Santo Stefano. In the 2023 edition, the Quartetto Leonardo, the Trio Ravel and the Trio Pantoum, winner of the renowned “Premio Trio di Trieste” will be heard. The violinist Giulia Rimonda in duo with the pianist Josèf Mossali and the pianist Nicolò Cafaro, winner of the coveted “Premio Venezia”, complete the proposal of new and promising performers that Bologna Festival shares with the Pianofortissimo piano festival once again this year.
An extraordinary concert, Monday 4 September, brings Martha Argerich to Bologna with the young Peace Orchestra Project created by Ricardo Castro, director already involved in other musical projects with the great Argentine pianist. On the stage of the Teatro Auditorium Manzoni, together with Argerich, the young pianist Federico Gad Crema to perform the Concerto for two pianos by Poulenc.
The serieThe Ancient and the New intertwines ancient music and today’s music in suggestive themed concerts. “Linee d’aria” with the Calamani Orchestra and the cellist Michele Marco Rossi performing works by Salvatore Sciarrino, Leonardo Leo and Nicola Fiorenza; “Flowing Water” with the voice of Laura Catrani, accompanied on the harpsichord and organ by Claudio Astronio, flowing from Barbara Strozzi to Marianne Faithfull, passing through Purcell, Haendel and Berio up to Florence and The Machine; “Gesualdo: Passio Christi” with Francesco Cera and his Ensemble Arte Musica proposing the Responsoria of Carlo Gesualdo da Venosa; “Naples and Europe” with the Vanvitelli Quartet which brings together violin, archlute, cello and harpsichord to rediscover eighteenth-century authors such as Giuseppe Agus and Michele Mascitti; “Préludes…Interludes…Postludes”, a refined program built by Jan Michiels alternating the Preludes of Debussy and Chopin with the Etudes of Ligeti; Rejoice! with the cellist Giovanni Gnocchi in duo with the violinist Nurit Stark to weave pages by Lachenmann, Dall’Abaco, Kurtág, Hume, Biber, Martinu and Gubaidulina; “Absolute music and well-tempered instruments”, an inventive project by the Tetraktis Percussioni ensemble which, together with the harpsichordist Enrico Baiano, revisits Bach involving six Italian composers.