Bologna Festival 2022 | Music that leaves a mark

Bologna Festival 2022, now in its 41st edition, follows its traditional trajectories in the series Great Performers, Talents, The Ancient and the New. Music that leaves a mark: the names of the greatest stars of the musical universe join those of young and brilliant promises. As an overture to the season, starting on 30 March, the Musical Correspondences series will feature readings of autograph writings by Giuseppe Sinopoli, Giuseppe Verdi, Farinelli and Claude Debussy: conversations and readings with musical interludes, curated by well-known music critics or music historians. On the occasion of the event dedicated to Farinelli, the most famous evirated cantor in history, on the 11  April, countertenor Jakub Józef Orliński will hold a concert on the repertoire that made Farinelli famous, ideally recalling his style of singing.


Great Performers

Great Performers will feature some of the most important conductors of the moment: John Eliot Gardiner, Daniel Harding and Jakub Hrůša, at the head of important orchestras such as the English Baroque Soloists, Mahler Chamber Orchestra or the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. Two outstanding soloists are Patricia Kopatchinskaja, who will play Beethoven with a crystal clear sound and genuine spontaneity, and Alina Ibragimova, who will interpret Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with sparkling transparency. One of the two piano recitals of the 2022 season is played by Alexander Gadjiev, who was awarded at the Warsaw Chopin Competition and has already been a guest of the Bologna Festival in the Talents series. We will listen to him in a “Tout Chopin” programme.
The Baroque music programme sees the return to Bologna of the most renowned French ensemble in this repertoire, Les Musiciens du Louvre, together with the mezzosoprano Vivica Genaux; her vocal agility will shine in opera arias by Handel and Porpora. Mario Brunello, a curious and tireless researcher who is always open to new challenges, will this time play the cello piccolo in works by Tartini and contemporary composers. At the end of the Festival, on 9 June, Georgian pianist Khatia Buniatishvili will begin her recital with the poetic Satie, followed by Bach, Chopin, Schubert and Liszt. With the new initiative Prima delle Note, we will be introduced to the concert programme by music critics Guido Barbieri and Fabio Sartorelli. This initiative will take place at the Oratorio di San Filippo Neri from 6pm.




As part of the well-established summer “open air” programme shared with the Pianofortissimo festival, the Talents series will be held in the magnificent setting of the cloister of the Basilica di Santo Stefano.
This year’s young concert performers are all Italian, and the programme ranges from chamber music to piano and baroque music with original instruments. The series opens on 13 June with clarinettist Kevin Spagnolo and pianist Simone Rugani. Then it will be the turn of Luca Giovannini (cello) and Martina Consonni (piano), the Soloists of the Camerata Accademica and finally the Eos Quartet.



The Ancient and the New

Ancient and contemporary music intertwine in the programmes of the well-known autumn series The Ancient and the New. This year special attention is paid to keyboard instruments, new or old, traditional or prepared, electronic or toy, with programmes that combine Kurtág’s Játékok with Couperin’s Preludes or that play pre-classical works on the fortepiano. In another programme, “American Landscapes for five keyboards”, we will hear music from the latest American avant-garde on five different types of keyboard instruments. We will see performing on stage Maria Grazia Bellocchio, Andreas Staier and Emanuele Arciuli.
The most mystical polyphonic repertoire, new and ancient, is entrusted to the English group The Tallis Scholars at the opening of the series on 21 September: Arvo Pärt’s Triodion will resound together with Thomas Tallis’ Sancte Deus. Percussionist Simone Rubino’s programme will be entirely contemporary, offering with impressive virtuosity works by John Cage, Iannis Xenakis and Tan Dun. Enrico Onofri on baroque violin with his Imaginarium Ensemble will close the autumn season on 27 October, introducing us to the rarest 17th century repertoire.