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Handel Halle Festival

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Handel Festival 2020: Musical Paintings THIS FESTIVAL HAS BEEN CANCELLED

Advance ticket sales start on 28 November 2019

Handel Festival Halle is the largest music festival in the state of Saxony-Anhalt and one of the oldest and most famous Baroque music festivals in Europe. Nowhere else in the world do lovers of Baroque music have the opportunity to experience so many stage and concert productions of Baroque opera in the space of just 17 days. Naturally, the focus is on the operas of George Frideric Handel. Exactly 100 years ago in Halle, Oskar Hagen, who did a doctorate at the university here, nurtured the idea of staging a Handel opera for the first time in more than 170 years. He was inspired by the then professor of the musicology seminar of Halle University, Hermann Abert. The first performance took place in Göttingen in 1920, where Oskar Hagen had taken up an appointment with the university. In Göttingen, he found the support of another native of Halle: Paul Thiersch, then director of the Halle School of Trades (Handwerkerschule), who took charge of the scenography for the Handel operas in Göttingen. Born in Halle and emanating from Göttingen, the Handel opera renaissance thus began 100 years ago – an important anniversary that will be celebrated jointly this year by the Handel festivals of Göttingen and Halle.

Next year, the Handel Festival in Halle will take place from 29 May to 14 June 2020. In more than 100 different events over 17 days, visitors will have the opportunity to hear and see the very best of Baroque music on the festival theme of “Musical Paintings”. One special feature of the Handel Festival in Halle is that a number of different events take place in authentic Handel venues. Altogether, five stage productions, five oratorios and a multitude of gala concerts will be presented. 

For full information, visit the Festival’s website.

Looking back at previous editions of the festival

Biblical epics the stars of the 2017 Handel Halle Festival

Händelhaus © Thomas Ziegler
Every year, Halle honours one of its favourite sons – composer Georg Friedrich Händel, who was born there in 1685. The Handel Halle Festival takes place from the end of May until early June and attracts the top Baroque performers from all over the globe.