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Festival: Innsbruck Festival of Early Music

© C. Gaio
© C. Gaio

July 18th - August 27th, 2017

The Innsbruck Festival of Early Music is a celebration of historically informed performances of music from the late Renaissance, Baroque and early Classical periods, presenting musicians of the highest artistic standards in some of Austria's greatest historic venues. The Ambras Castle Concerts, first held in 1964, and the Innsbruck Festival of Early Music that was established in 1976, have played a pioneering role in the revival of Baroque opera and in the promotion of historically informed performance practices.

Among the acclaimed musicians and conductors who have appeared at the Festival are Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Jordi Savall, Ton Koopman, Frans Brüggen, Gustav Leonhardt, Sigiswald Kuijken, Alan Curtis, Giovanni Antonini, Fabio Biondi, Rinaldo Alessandrini, Christina Pluhar and Cecilia Bartoli. Belgian conductor and countertenor René Jacobs organized the Festival's opera programme from 1991 to 2009 and was artistic director of the entire Festival from 1997 to 2009. In these years, the Festival has presented more than 20 unique opera productions of the 17th and 18th century. In 2010, Alessandro De Marchi succeeded Jacobs as artistic director of the Innsbruck Festival. De Marchi has been pointing the way to the future with the “Cesti Singing Competition” for Baroque opera and the “BAROCKOPER:JUNG” for young, emerging talents.

In 2017 the Innsbruck Festival of Early Music celebrates Claudio Monteverdi’s 450 th birthday with his opera “Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria”. Conducted by Alessandro De Marchi, the production unites some of the leading experts in baroque opera: tenor Kresimir Spicer in the title role, mezzo-soprano Christine Rice as Penelope and countertenor David Hansen as Ulisse’s son Telemaco. Awe-inspiring female characters take centre stage in the other two opera productions: firstly, Nero’s wife in Reinhard Keiser’s, “Octavia” – a performance of the BAROCKOPER:JUNG with a cast made up entirely of singers from the 2016 Cesti Competition. Secondly, the muse-come- to-life sculpted by the artist Pygmalion in the ballet opera of the same name by the French composer Jean-Philippe Rameau, which marks the debut of Christophe Rousset as an opera conductor at the Festival. Further virtuosos of early music such as Maurice Steger, Christina Pluhar, Nuria Rial, Arianna Vendittelli, Isabelle Faust and ensembles such as Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Mala Punica and Academia Montis Regalis will perform at the 2017 Innsbruck Festival of Early Music.

For further information visit the Innsbruck Festival of Early Music website

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