Thursday, 15. 5. 2014

62nd Ljubljana Festival

The 62nd Ljubljana Festival will be held between 1 July and 1 September 2014 with a varied accompanying programme in the month of June and in mid-September.

As many as five concerts will be held in the Congress Square while one performance will take place in the Square of Unity in Trieste for an even livelier vibe of two cities. An impressive start with Carmina Burana and a royal conclusion with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra from Amsterdam.

The distinguished conductors Uroš Lajovic, Riccardo Muti, Karel Mark Chichon, Nikša Bareza, George Pehlivanian, Vladislav Černušenko, Andres Mustonen and Mariss Jansons will perform. Among the highlights are the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra from Amsterdam, Moscow Soloists and Filarmonica '900 Del Teatro Regio Di Torino. The extraordinary artistic experience will be provided by the pianists Boris Berezovski, Paul Badura-Skoda, Rostislav Krimer and Jean-Yves Thibaudet, the violinist Stefan Milenković, the violist Jurij Bašmet, the guitarist Vlatko Stefanovski, the mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča, the queen of flamenco María Pagés, choreographers Vasiliy Medvedev, Valentina Turcu and Leo Mujić, the director Mykal Rand and others. Top art at affordable prices – even from 5 € on.

The Ljubljana Festival also demonstrates its social responsibility with free workshops for children with few opportunities.

Six Concerts in Two Squares

The 62nd Ljubljana Festival sets five events in one of the most beautiful squares in the city, the Congress Square. The Summer Night project will commence a long hot festival summer on the stage surrounded by the marvellous scenery of historic buildings and a park with remarkable view on the city's castle. This year the project, organised in co-production with RTV Slovenia, celebrates the most beautiful songs about Ljubljana. On 21 June, the presenter Miša Molk will take us through the songs performed by the Big Bend and RTV Slovenia Symphonic Orchestra under the baton of Patrik Greblo and the soloists Tinkara Kovač, Eva Hren, Alenka Godec, Slavko Ivančić, Nuša Derenda, Eva Černe, Anžej Dežan, Nina Strnad, Severa Gjurin, etc.

Prior to its official opening, the Ljubljana Festival will take us beyond the capital city and across Slovenian national borders. The present given to us last year by Roberto Cosolini, the Mayor of Trieste in the form of Rosinni's Stabat Mater is returned with Carmina Burana. The work of Carl Orff will be presented under the baton of Uroš Lajovic on 30 July in the imposing Square of Unity in Trieste by the soloists Aida Čorbadžić, Marko Cvetko and Giorgio Surian together with the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, Opera Choir, Ballet Ensemble and Orchestra of the Slovenian National Theatre, Slovenian Chamber Choir, the Ivan Goran Kovačić Academic Choir and the Choir of National Theatre Sarajevo. A scenic cantata Carmina Burana was first staged on 8 June 1937 in Frankfurt by the Frankfurt Opera. One of its most famous movements is the first entitled O Fortuna, since it is frequently heard in movies and commercials. Carmina Burana will thus open the 62nd Ljubljana Festival (1 July).

Afterwards, the Congress Square will host three excellent concerts. In the scope of the Fire & Ice project the acknowledged Macedonian guitarist Vlatko Stefanovski, musician Vasko Atanasovski and Slovene Philharmonic String Chamber Orchestra will take the stage on 3 July. On 7 July, we expect the unforgettable concert, dedicated to the tenth anniversary of the death of Carlos Kleiber and to honour the Italian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. In Verdi’s Requiem, the renowned conductor Riccardo Muti will combine the Luigi Cherubini Youth Orchestra, founded in 2004 and comprising of young musicians from all Italian regions, the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, Slovenian Chamber Choir, Choir of the Academy of Music, Ljubljana, Choir Friuli Venezia Giulia and Choir of Fondazione Teatro Lirico Giuseppe Verdi Trieste. They will be joined by the musicians of the Berlin Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of Fondazione Teatro Lirico Giuseppe Verdi Trieste, Saint Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra National de France, Orchestre Symphonique du Théatre Royal de La Monnaie, Philharmonia Orchestra from London and the Vienna Philharmonic.

The final act of extending the festival spirit beyond the walls of the Križanke Outdoor Theatre to the Congress Square will be performed by the famous mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča, a multiple award-winner and the favourite performer of the most prestigious stages worldwide. Her fame reached new heights with her performance at the Salzburg Festival in 2003. On 8 July, she will perform arias from the operas the Maid of Orleans, Samson and Delilah, the Queen of Sheba, Carmen accompanied by the RTV Slovenia Symphonic Orchestra conducted by the likewise famous Karel Mark Chichon.

Excellent with the Excellents in Križanke

The summer programme then moves from the Congress Square to the Križanke Outdoor Theatre where almost entire 62nd Ljubljana Festival will take place (with few exceptions).

The Križanke programme starts with Wagner. It will host his Romantic opera Lohengrin performed by the Croatian National Theatre soloists, choir and orchestra, conducted by Nikša Bareza. Qingdao Symphonic Orchestra from China will among other musical works perform also a symphonic piece by Jeff Rone entitled Regatta, composed during the 29th competition of Olympic sailing regatta in Qindao (22 July). The Mihail Ivanovič Glinka Choir returns to Slovenia to perform under the baton of Vladislav Černušenko in the Slovenian Philharmonic Hall, Ptuj and Kranjska Gora (23, 24 and 26 July).

The hosting of Filarmonica '900 Del Teatro Regio Di Torino with the conductor Andres Mustonen also brings the first Slovenian interpretation of the song Warum? Wozu? Wodurch? for flute, bass flute, clarinet, bass clarinet and strings by Sofia Gubaidulina (24 July). The Russian composer wrote this piece commissioned by Emilia Romagna Festival, Ravello Festival, Ljubljana Festival, Dubrovnik Summer Festival, Staatskapelle Dresden, Sinfoniette Amsterdam, Festival Pianistico di Brescia e Bergano, and Fondazione Arena di Verona.

The distinguished violinist Stefan Milenković will perform the Pasión project together with the accordion player Marko Hatlak (28 July). Three concerts will be dedicated to three extraordinary composers and musicians: 80th anniversary of Lojze Lebič (23 August), 30th anniversary of work of Zoran Mitev (6 August) and 10th anniversary of performance of Uroš Perić (29 August). Vlado Kreslin will also give his traditional concert in Križanke (26 August).

The Slovenian Philharmonic Hall will host Moscow Soloists (27 August). The violinists Jurij Bašmet and Lana Trotovšek will perform as soloists.

Pianists at the Ljubljana Festival

This year's summer festival offers the performances of four well-known and distinguished piano players. Boris Berezovski will take the stage twice, as a solo performer and together with the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra (14 and 15 July). Two representatives of two different generations will perform together: Austrian pianist Paul Badura-Skoda and young Russian pianist Rostislav Krimer (24 August).

The 62nd Ljubljana Festival closes its doors on 1 September with a concert of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra from Amsterdam, conducted by Mariss Jansons, one of the most prominent conductors in the world. The concert will see the soloist Jean-Yves Thibaudet, one of the most talented pianists in the world. He started his study at the National Conservatory of Music and Dance in Lyon when he was five, and made his first performance two years later. He played with numerous renowned orchestras, such as the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, which we had a privilege to listen to at the 61st Ljubljana Festival, and soloists, such as Jurij Bašmet, who is on the list of performers for this year's programme. Thibaudet is a multiple award-winner and has recorded over 40 records with Decca Records. Interestingly, Jean-Yves Thibaudet usually performs in the creations of the famous English fashion designer Vivienne Westwood.

Passion of Motion

Križanke will see the return of María Pagés, the queen of flamenco, who presents herself with her own project entitled Self-portrait (16 July). A gala evening of ballet world stars (27 July) will present ballet pairs of prima ballerinas, ballet champions and the best soloists from the Bolshoi Theatre from Moscow, the Mikhailovsky and Mariinsky Theatres from St. Petersburg, the Berlin State Opera, the English National Ballet and the Dutch National Ballet. They will take us through the most beautiful duets from the ballets Cinderella, Onegin, Spartacus, Le Corsaire, La Sylphide (The Sylph), Scheherezade, Don Quixote, etc. The artistic director and the director of the evening is Vasiliy Medvedev, a distinguished Russian choreographer.

The co-production of the Opera and Ballet of Slovenian National Theatre Maribor, Dubrovnik Summer Festival and Ljubljana Festival brings about the creation of the Neo-Baroque ballet entitled Dangerous Liaisons with the choreographers Valentina Turcu and Leo Mujić (28 August). The ballet was inspired by the homonymous novel by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos and the Heiner Müller's Quartet.

The musicals are also among the highlights of the summer festival. Evita, composed by Tim Rice (lyrics) and Andrew Lloyd Webber (music), comes from the London's West End to the Križanke stage. Mykal Rand, well-known to our public, is the director and choreographer while Bronowski the producer of the show. Also the Cvetje v Jeseni (Blossoms in Autumn) musical falls under the accompanying events which will follow the official ending of the 62nd Ljubljana Festival. One of the most famous Slovenian literary works will be staged at Križanke by the director Vojko Anzeljc. The author of music is Matjaž Vlašič, while the musical is starred by Matjaž Robavs, Nina Pušlar, Jure Ivanušič, Alenka Kozolc, Maja Martina Merljak, Ana Grasselli.

Social Responsibility

For the third time in a row, the Ljubljana Festival organises free-of-charge thematic creative workshops for children. This year, the workshops focus on the children with few opportunities. The project is prepared in collaboration with Friends of Youth Association Ljubljana Moste-Polje to offer a carefree summer also to those children the parents of which cannot afford the holidays.

Top Artistic Performances from 5 € on

The presale with a 10-percent discount on all tickets will take place until 20 June. Ljubljana Festival continues to supports the excellence – the best elementary and secondary school pupils and university students will be able to buy tickets with an 80-percent discount. Discounts can also be acquired after 20 June with loyalty cards of our sponsors or with the City Museum, National Gallery, Postojna Cave and other tickets. The membership in the Ljubljana Festival Club brings special discounts.

The Ljubljana Festival introduces yet another novelty. Standing-room tickets will be available for 5 or 9 € on the day of the event. For children under 14 the standing-room will be free-of-charge.

Press Conference

On Wednesday, 14 May 2014, the 62nd Ljubljana Festival was presented by Darko Brlek, the Director and Artistic Director of the Ljubljana Festival and the President of the European Festival Association (EFA). The press conference was held in the City Hall and hosted by Zoran Janković, the Major of the City of Ljubljana, the honorary sponsor of the 62nd Ljubljana Festival.Short speeches were also given by the representatives of the 62nd Ljubljana Festival sponsors: Simon Furlan, Marketing Manager, Telekom Slovenije; Andrej Kavšek, Chairman of the Board, Tilia Insurance Company; Tomaž Krajnčič, Marketing Manager, Hypo Alpe Adria Bank; Aleksander Salkič, Advisor to the Chairman of the Board, Petrol; Aleksander Batič, Executive Director of the Nova KBM Board for the field of business network.