The Concentus Moraviae Festival starts today. It will travel between Kroměříž and Vienna

30 May 2023, 1:00
The Concentus Moraviae Festival starts today. It will travel between Kroměříž and Vienna

The 28th edition of the Concentus Moraviae Festival will remind us of the musical life between Kroměříž and Vienna in the 17th and 18th centuries. Concerts are traditionally held in the courtyards and salons of chateaux, in castle halls, and in the pews of basilicas, churches and synagogues. The legendary Viennese ensemble Concentus Musicus Wien has accepted the position of ensemble in residence. Today’s opening concert will feature this ensemble under the direction of Czech conductor Tomáš Netopil.

Vienna, as the seat of the Habsburg emperors, and Kroměříž, as the seat of the archbishops of Olomouc, define the space that inspires the festival. The dramaturgy was undertaken by a trio of respected experts: the Dean of the Faculty of Music at JAMU, harpsichordist, organist and musicologist Barbara Maria Willi; historian, musicologist and choirmaster Vladimír Maňas; and Otto Biba, Austrian musicologist, long-time director of the Vienna Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde archive and an unquestionable musicological capacity. This year’s festival, subtitled Between Kroměříž and Vienna, is scheduled for 30 May to 27 June 2023.

The festival is honoured by the fact that the legendary Viennese ensemble Concentus Musicus has accepted the position of ensemble in residence and will open the festival today, Tuesday, 30 May 2023, at the Archbishop’s Chateau in Kroměříž, with conductor Tomáš Netopil:I am absolutely thrilled with the dramaturgical concept for the 28th Concentus Moraviae Festival, which will musically connect Kroměříž and Vienna,” stated Netopil, an artist who has been enthusiastically applauded by audiences in concert halls and opera houses around the world in recent years and who chose Beethoven’s iconic Eroica for the opening concert. It will be performed in the newly reconstructed Chamber Hall, and a day later the ensemble in residence will present the same program at Brno’s Besední dům.

Thanks to this year’s intensive cooperation with the music archive of the Kroměříž Archdiocesan Museum, a rich archival menu will be presented to the festival audience by an array of top performers. Foreign stars and young talents such as Benjamin Alard, Protean Quartet, Mélanie Flores, Ensemble Castelkorn and Cohaere Ensemble will gather in Moravia. The outstanding domestic ensembles Musica Figuralis, Societas Incognitorum and Capella Ornamentata have prepared modern or world premieres of works by Baroque masters. Established artists Barbara Maria Willi, Erich Höbarth and Petr Kolař will focus on the rich dramaturgical line of 17th century treasures from Kroměříž and Vienna, while lovers of beautiful voices can look forward to the soprano of Kateřina Kněžíková, the mezzo-soprano of Dagmar Šašková, and the baritone of Tomáš Šelc.

A special place in the festival program is occupied by the three-day project Island of Lutes by virtuoso lutenist and guitarist Pierre Pitzl. Concerts by the vocal ensembles Dionysos Now! and Cappella Mariana will reaffirm the popularity of Renaissance Italian and Flemish music in Moravia, while the German Ensemble Leones will offer a medieval journey through the regions. With concerts by professional artists of the younger generation, such as the B3 Ensemble, Vojtěch Jakl, Kateřina Maňáková, Michaela Ambrosi, Michaela Koudelková, Zuzana Badárová, and more, the festival supports the further development of historical interpretation.

This year, the festival has also prepared several accompanying programs. The popular Music on Bicycle will take place on Saturday 10 June in the Lednice-Valtice compound and in Pálava. The artistic and documentary work of the festival’s photographer Jiří Sláma will represent the traditional combination of music and visual art. On 8 June, the festival will also travel to Prague: its patron Magdalena Kožená will celebrate her significant jubilee with a benefit concert for her foundation in the Vladislav Hall of Prague Castle.

Festival cities:

Boskovice, Brno, Bystřice nad Pernštejnem, Hustopeče, Ivančice, Kroměříž, Kurdějov, Kuřim, Kyjov, Lomnice, Lysice, Mikulov, Milotice, Moravský Krumlov, Náměšť nad Oslavou, Státní hrad Pernštejn, Rájec-Jestřebí, Slavkov u Brna, Telč, Tišnov, Valtice, Velké Meziříčí, Žďár nad Sázavou

Tomáš Netopil/ photo: Marco Borggreve



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