The official opening of the 29th year of the IMF Český Krumlov will take place in different parts of the English park in the Castle Garden. History and the present day will intertwine, Baroque illumination as well as modern video projection await the visitors. Trumpeter Marek Zvolánek, the Bohemia Voice quartet and other musicians will perform during the composed evening. Members of the ballet company of the South Bohemian Theatre and GoJa Music Hall will dance. Live acts and half-playback performances will alternate.
Billy Cobham is at present one of the most recognized jazz drummers. He has a very distinct drumming style, in which the influence of jazz, rock and funk is apparent. He is also a highly regarded composer and producer. He has played in hundreds of albums with his own groups and has given concerts with a number of famous artists (Tony Williams, Dean Brown, Tim Landers, Gil Evans and Miles Davis). At the Brewery Garden he will perform together with the musicians from the CBC Big Band conducted by Miroslav Surka. The concert is a continuation of the World Jazz Legends cycle.
Pavel Kohout, the overall winner of the prestigious international competition Musashino – Tokyo 2000, belongs to the most successful concert organists of the younger generation. Many first prizes (Ljubljana, Vilnius, Poznan, Kaliningrad, Bruges, Lübeck and others) are proof of his exceptional musical talent. At present he focuses mainly on his solo concert career. He has also performed at numerous festivals and dedicates himself to recording activities. At the Monastery Church he will present works by Vivaldi, Mozart, Buxtehude and others.
Jiří Bárta and Terezie Fialová will perform five Sonatas for cello and piano in honour of Ludwig van Beethoven, since whose birth 250 years will have passed. Jiří Bárta belongs to the best cellists of his generation. His extensive concert activities include concerts with orchestras such as the Berliner Symphoniker, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra London and others. He is a regular guest of prestigious music festivals and concerts at renowned concert halls around the world. Terezie Fialová is an important personality among young Czech pianists and has appeared on a number of international stages as a solo and chamber player. She regularly performs at important festivals (Basel, Hamburg, Paris, Madrid, New York, Washington and others).
The Bennewitz Quartet is a leading chamber ensemble on an international scale, which is confirmed by first prizes at prestigious international competitions. In 2019 the quartet received the Classic Prague Award in the category Best Chamber Music Performance. The quartet gives concerts on prominent Czech and foreign stages and performs at important festivals (Salzburger Festspiele, Lucerne Festival, Rheingau Musik Festival and others). The ensemble bears the name of violinist Antonín Bennewitz, who was instrumental in the founding of the Czech violin school. The quartet will play Bach, Haydn, Beethoven and Dvořák at the Masquerade Hall.
Unforgettable songs with lyrics by Milan Uhde and beautiful music by Miloš Štědroň based on motives from Ivan Olbracht’s novel Nikola the Outlaw (in Czech “Nikola Šuhaj loupežník”) – that is the Ballad for a Bandit. The IMF Český Krumlov will present the concert version of the production interpreted by the actors from the Husa na provázku (“Goose on a String”) Theatre (Eva Vrbková, Gabriela Vermelho, Jan Zadražil, Dalibor Buš) and the South Czech Philharmonic under the baton of Vojtěch Spurný. The audience will listen to a selection of the most famous songs and melodies interspersed with extracts and acts from the play.
EVENING ON THE OCCASION OF J. S. BACH’S ANNIVERSARY
Violin virtuoso Pavel Šporcl will perform a program in honour of music genius Johann Sebastian Bach, since whose death almost exactly 270 years have passed (he died on 28th July 1750), at the Castle Riding Hall. Pavel Šporcl is one of the most sought-after Czech artists. Thanks to his art, distinct personality and unconventional manner, he is acclaimed by listeners of all generations. During his career he has cooperated with many renowned orchestras, given concerts around the world on the stages of famous concert halls. Besides the core classical repertoire, he also presents other genres. In Český Krumlov he will appear in the role of both violinist and conductor. Oboist Vilém Veverka will appear in one of the compositions as the guest of the evening; the soloists will be accompanied by the South Czech Philharmonic.
unique film project
American composer John Williams is a true master of film music. So far, he has received 5 Oscars, 3 Emmy Awards, 4 Golden Globes and 21 Grammy Awards. He started composing for director Steven Spielberg and their cooperation resulted in unforgettable melodies from the films Indiana Jones, Jurassic Park, Saving Private Ryan, Catch Me, If You Can, E. T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Schindler’s List and the cult film Jaws. Music form some of these films will be played in Český Krumlov by the North Czech Philharmonic Teplice under the baton of Jan Kučera.
On one of the festival Sunday mornings, the sound of organ and vocals will fill the Monastery Church. Organist Pavel Svoboda is the winner prestigious international competitions and as a soloist he has made appearances at music festivals both in the Czech Republic and abroad. He is the program advisor and artistic director of the F. L. Věk International Music Festival and the chairman of the PROVARHANY association, which focuses on the protection of historical organs. Mezzosoprano Eliška Zajícová won first prize at the B. Martinů Competition in Polička and second prize at the International Antonín Dvořák Singing Competition in Karlovy Vary. She made her opera debut at the world premiere of the opera A Woman Such as Myself by composer Daniel Lo from Hong Kong. She regularly cooperates with contemporary composers and presents their works. The program of this concert will include works by Vivaldi, Händel, Mozart and others.
AUTHOR’S EVENING ON THE OCCASION OF A LIFE JUBILLEE
Štěpán Rak enchants his listeners by the intensity of experience, mastery of interpretation and the absolute fusion of the interpreter and composer in one person with the soul of music. In 2000 he was appointed university guitar professor as the first person in the Czech Republic. The program will bear the name Fairy Tale Journey (in Czech “Cesta do pohádky”) and Štěpán Rak will narrate famous fairy tale stories in musical language while celebrating fairy tale creatures; the audience will also hear music with fairy tale themes such as the conflict between good and evil and the power of love. Štěpán Rak will perform together with his son Jan Matěj Rak, who is also a guitarist.
FAMOUS BAROQUE ARIAS
An evening at the Baroque Theatre at the Český Krumlov Castle is always a unique experience. Listeners can admire the interiors of one of the oldest preserved castle theatres in the world. The backstage still contains the original theatre machinery; thanks to an elaborate system of winches, pulleys and ropes the entire stage can suddenly change in front of the viewers’ eyes. Also this year of the festival will give viewers the opportunity to experience what Baroque theatre was like. This time the most beautiful Baroque arias will be presented on stage by the ensemble Musica Florea and soloists in a concert format but with period costumes and using the effects which the theatre can offer.
Famous Argentinian tenor José Cura is coming back to the IMF Český Krumlov. In the past years he enchanted the festival audience during the concert in the Brewery Garden but also at the Revolving Auditorium, where he interpreted the main role in Leoncavallo’s opera Pagliacci. Cura’s vocal performances have made Cura a perennial star of leading opera houses including the Metropolitan Opera in New York, Royal Opera in London, Vienna State Opera and La Scala in Milan. At the concert at the Castle Riding Hall José Cura will make an appearance not only as a soloist but also as a conductor. He will perform together with a symphony orchestra and guitarist Barbora Kubíková, who has already given a number of successful concerts in Germany and Spain.
Violinist Letitia Moreno “is able to impress listeners as well as critics by her natural charisma, virtuosity and depth of interpretation”, write the critics. Leticia Moreno has a number of such superlatives in the press and enthusiastic responses from audiences to her credit. She has cooperated with the most famous orchestras (Vienna Philharmonic, St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra and others) under the baton of such conductors as Zubin Mehta, Krzysztof Penderecki, Christoph Eschenbach and others. In Český Krumlov she will perform with the PKF – Prague Philharmonia under the baton of Tomáš Brauner. She will play works by Antonín Dvořák, Édouard Lalo and Bohuslav Martinů, whose 130th anniversary of his birth we celebrate in 2020, at the Castle Riding Hall.
“A new shining start on the concert stage was born.” This is how the daily Dresdner Neueste Nachrichten described the concert debut of the European Guitar Quartet in 2012. Invitations to festivals around the world followed, including big festivals in Scandinavia, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, India and South America. These four musicians – each of them a renowned soloist – have the aim of combining traditional instrumental concerts with expressive, dynamic sounds of modern music. At the Castle Riding Hall they will play compositions by Ástor Piazzolla, Kurt Weill and the author works of one of the members of the quartet, Czech guitarist Pavel Steidl.
Organist, harpsichord player, composer and singer Katta attracted attention on the international stage during concerts with renowned orchestras but also as a soloist of organ recitals. She has made appearances at European multi-genre festivals. However, among organists she is an exception: she composes her own original compositions in which she uses her heartfelt voice and opens new sound worlds. She shows how an organ in the 21st century sounds, whether she plays a church organ or her unique white instrument outside the church. She is striking: a barefooted organist, angelically delicate and earthily spontaneous. In 2018 Katta received a “Classic Prague Award” for her author’s project Vox Organi, a part of which she will present to the festival audience in the Monastery Garden in Český Krumlov together with works by J. S. Bach and A. Pärt.
In the past years the IMF Český Krumlov introduced the visitors to cultures of different countries in the cycle of the so-called national evenings. The Spanish Evening achieved great success and therefore this program returns to the festival in a new format. This time the viewers may look forward to a combination of Spanish rhythms with a symphony orchestra – the North Czech Philharmonic Teplice under the baton of Jan Kučera. Tenor Plácido Domingo. Jr., the son of the opera legend, will sing, Carlos Piñana will present his own author compositions and flamenco improvisations and Maise Márquez will dance flamenco. Spanish gastronomical delicacies will also be included.
In 2020 we will remember the 250th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven. The official closing concert of the 29th year of the IMF Český Krumlov will therefore belong to the famous Symphony No. 9 with Ode to Joy and the audience will also hear Beethoven’s concert aria Ah! perfido. The world-renowned orchestra Berliner Symphoniker with soloists Eunsie Hong (soprano), Natasha Novitskaia (mezzosoprano), Kristian Benedikt (tenor) and Martin Gurbal' (bass) will perform at the Brewery Garden. The Kühn Choir of Prague will also sing and the conductor of the closing evening of the festival will be Alfonso Scarano.
During the IMF Český Krumlov video and audio recordings in the form of photographs and videos will be made for the purpose of presenting and promoting the festival. By entering the concert venues, the visitors give their consent to the taking of photographs and making of video recordings. Concert visitors have the right to refuse to grant the consent to the taking of photographs and making of video recordings as well as the right to subsequently withdraw the consent. If you wish to refuse or withdraw your consent, you may do so electronically by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.