209 artists, 13 events, 3 locations- 12th Mozartiana Festival!
The MOZARTIANA International Mozart Festival is a special event, which made its mark on the cultural calendar of not only Gdansk, but also the entire Pomeranian Voivodship. This highly original series of concerts and events linked to the work of the Maestro from Salzburg began 11 years ago, marking the 250th anniversary of Mozart’s birth and of the day the last Polish abbot in Oliwa, Jacek Rybinski, moved into the Abbot's Palace.
The festival's initiator was Jan Lukaszewski, one of the most distinguished connoisseurs of choral music, the head and conductor of the Polski Chor Kameralny. It is that very choir, with an almost 40-year history, that is MOZARTIANA's main organiser.
So far, the festival has hosted 24 orchestras, such as the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Academy of Ancient Music, Sinfonia Varsovia and the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, to name a few, as well as 68 solo instrumentalists and 84 singers, including such celebrities as Damme Emma Kirkby, Carolyn Sampson and Simone Kermes.
The festival is organized with the help of the City of Gdansk and in cooperation with the National Museum in Gdansk, Gdansk Historical Museum and Gdansk Road and Green Areas Management. The primary goal of the festival is to promote Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s music by having his pieces performed by the most distinguished musicians from all around the world. Mozartiana is also meant to bring back the significance Oliwa once had in the times of the last abbots, when it was an important social and cultural hub of the Polish Commonwealth. The festival’s main stage is situated against a backdrop of the charming Oliwa Park, which becomes a truly unusual place thanks to actors in 18th-century costumes, illuminations and Mozart's music resonating across the park’s alleys.
The idea to combine within one festival symphonic, jazz and folk concerts with open-air operatic, theatrical and puppet performances, as well as special programmes dedicated to children and, since 2013, chamber concerts inspired by the prolific works of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart makes the MOZARTIANA International Mozart Festival a truly unique event. MOZARTIANA is gaining more and more popularity with each subsequent edition. The estimated concert attendance amounts to almost 20,000 people!
This year, as in previous years, the festival will open with a prologue in Uphagen's House. Concerts, starting at 7 pm., will offer the audience a wide range of timbres and musical moods. First, we will hear Martin Ennis – an outstanding British harpsichordist – give a recital of Mozart’s musical roots (including pieces never performed before!). On the second day of the festival, a Polish accordionist Maciej Frackiewicz will demonstrate that the music of the Salzburg's genius can be performed on other instruments, unknown to Mozart himself. On Tuesday, antique bourgeois interiors in Gdansk will reverberate with the refined sound of the violin and the piano. A Polish violinist based in Vienna, Anna Gutowska, and a pianist Antoni Lichomanow will also appear on stage.
We will move to the Oliwa Park on Wednesday. During the official festival opening ceremony, we will hear a Slovak orchestra Slovak Sinfonietta and a French trumpet virtuoso Romain Lelou under the direction of Pawel Przytocki, known to MOZARTIANA’s audiences. On Friday, the Polish Radio Orchestra conducted by Michal Klauza will perform on a stage situated in the courtyard of the Abbot's Palace and present, together with a flutist Lukasz Dlugosz and a harpist Florence Sitruk (Switzerland), the absolutely spectacular Concerto for Flute, Harp, and Orchestra in C major, K. 299.
A major attraction of the festival is a theatrical and musical performance written specially for MOZARTIANA, entitled Fantasy on the Oliwa organs directed by Jerzy Bielunas, with the participation of gigantic puppets, the Polish Baltic Philharmonic and numerous actors and singers, such as the great actor Olgierd Lukaszewicz.
Oliwa Park will reverberate not only with classical music; fans of jazz, popular and folk music will also find something to their liking in the MOZARTIANA programme. We will hear the charismatic pop star Gaba Kulka on Wednesday night; Artur Dutkiewicz, one of the Polish jazz artists most widely known abroad, will perform on Thursday; and on Friday, an extremely colourful Scottish band Breabach will perform a folk rendition of Mozart's music played on authentic Scottish instruments.
The youngest audience will not be forgotten either, as we have prepared for them yet again a very varied and exciting programme. In charge of the children's programme is Aneta Gluch-Klucznik, a renowned actress and director of a puppet theatre, the dean of the Faculty of Puppetry at PWST National Academy of Theatre Arts in Krakow.
The Festival will conclude with the Final Concert featuring numerous remarkable artists. The Oliwa Cathedral will host such great singers as: Robin Johannsen (soprano); Julia Lezniewa, a formidable Russian soprano, who has performed on the major European and world opera stages (in Gdansk for the first time!) and who will sing the part of Soprano II from the Great Mass in C-minor and will give a solo performance of Regina coeli; Lothar Odinius, a German tenor and winner of many prestigious awards, as well as a distinguished Polish singer and teacher, Wojciech Gierlach (bass). The choral part will be performed by the organizer of the festival, the world-respected Polski Chor Kameralny, in the accompaniment of the legendary orchestra of ancient instruments the Academy of Ancient Music (Great Britain). The Great Mass in C-minor, left unfinished by Mozart, will be additionally set to Gregorian chants, performed by the Schola Gregoriana Cardinalis Stephani Wyszynski. The performance will be conducted by Jan Lukaszewski, one of the most prominent experts on choral music, the artistic director of Mozartiana IMF.
We kindly invite all Mozart lovers and fans of Gdansk's historical monuments to attend the concerts of the 12th Mozartiana International Mozart Festival!