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Stereart 2024 |  Highlights of the upcoming festival season

Stereart 2024 | Highlights of the upcoming festival season

The styriarte 2024 tournament will run for one month again, with 53 events programmed, around 30,000 tickets issued and the aim being to achieve half of the €2.88 million budget. Of course, mere numbers only give an inadequate picture of the Styrian Festival, which will perhaps see a colorful and memorable edition in 2024.

Several focal points can be identified. Claudio Monteverdi becomes ruler of the (secret) festival. The Italian theater group Teatri 35 and La Venexiana showcase the Monteverdi-Caravaggio intersection: there are vivid paintings of the composer’s madrigals, which draw on the painter’s aesthetic. Monteverdi’s first opera, “L’Orfeo,” will be performed by conductor Michael Hill and his band Art House 17, and Natalia Moro will illustrate the story of the legendary singer through vivid sand paintings. Monteverdi’s Marian Vespers closes the festival when conductor Jordi Savall performs the monumental work in Pulau Parish Church.

Jordi Savall became an artist in residence, so to speak. In addition to Monteverdi’s Vespers, Savall also performs Mozart’s Great Requiem, with Staines Parish Church providing the festive atmosphere. In Graz, Savall recalls the beginnings of his musical fame when he recalls the magic of the “seventh string” at a violin evening with the music of Marine Marais and Site Colombe.

Orpheus isn’t the only songwriter Styriarte focuses on. According to legend, the ancient singer Timothy drove General Alexander so crazy with his voice that he was eventually able to control him. Georg Friedrich Handel’s “Alexander Festival” was dedicated to this dark series, with conductor Alfredo Bernardini and the Zeffero Baroque Orchestra opening the festival. Richard Wagner Tannhäuser, Jacques Offenbach, Orpheus, Reinhard May and ABBA are the other songwriters honored in the programme.

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A special number of major artists are represented in 2024: pianist Ragna Schirmer plays Clara Schumann and Franz Liszt, Florian Busch and the Music Banda Francie wander between Schubert and Purcell, Birgitte Minichmeier reads Shakespeare, and Pierre-Laurent Aimard performs Bach’s claviers. Cameron Carpenter plays the Stefaiensaal – Organ, Bruno De Sa sings Baroque melodies, and Fadel Say plays his own works and Schubert’s last piano sonata.

The audience is constantly encouraged: for example, singing when Erwin Ortner and the Schoenberg Choir sing Rehn Schubert’s “German Requiem” in the collegiate church, at the bicycle concert or even in one of the innovations: three days in June belong to the “German Requiem” project “Up , Down Staircase” in which the historic architecture of Graz’s Old Town becomes the backdrop for the visit of Empress Maria Theresa. This includes an evening of music and theater at the Atems Palace and at the Old University, where the host, played by Matthias Ohner, attempts to control the chaos and eventually perform Vivaldi’s opera based on the “Four Seasons” in the theatre. Eggenberg’s harmony music concludes the three-day spectacle choreographed by Thomas Hooft, which takes you back to 1750.