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2021 George Enescu Festival, in the Feminine

Top International Female Musicians such as Diana Damrau, Joyce DiDonato, Yuja Wang, Sonya Yoncheva, Khatia Buniatishvili, and Numerous Other Women Artists Renowned for their Talent Will Perform at the George Enescu Festival

The Jubilee Edition of the George Enescu International Festival will bring to Bucharest some of the most representative female powerhouses of classical music today.

Diana Damrau and Joyce DiDonato, two voices heard in Romania for the first time in the 2019 Enescu Festival, return for the Romanian audiences, now with orchestral accompaniment. American mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, impressed by the warmth of the Romanian audience, will perform again on the stage of the Athenaeum and is preparing an exceptional program, while soprano Diana Damrau will perform with the German Chamber Philharmonic of Bremen, conducted by Jérémie Rhorer.

One of the most famous pianists today, Yuja Wang, returns to the Enescu Festival, this time with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. For the first time, she will also perform in Sibiu. The Jubilee Edition Program is truly rich in exceptional musicians – Maria João Pires will delight the audience in Romania with a new Mozart concerto together with the Baltic Sea Philharmonic. The celebrated pianist will also give a recital in Cluj-Napoca.

Among the significant female names of this edition is soprano Sonya Yoncheva, one of the most acclaimed musicians of the international stage, coming for the first time to Romania. Fascinating Georgian pianist Khatia Buniatishvili will make an appearance on the Festival stage again, with the Tonhalle Orchestra of Zürich conducted by Paavo Järvi.

Violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja, a constant presence on the great stages of the world and of the Enescu Festival, will perform in Bucharest and Iasi the Concerto for Violin, Live Electronics, and Orchestra, written especially for her by composer Fred Popovici. She will also perform at the Festival with the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

An interesting highlight will be Alexandra Dariescu’s performance of the Piano Concerto by Clara Schumann (last programmed in Romania in 2006), a work considered by experts to be a great feminist manifesto. Among the exceptional musicians invited are also violinists Hillary Hahn, Viktoria Mullova, Carolin Widmann, pianists Alexandra Silocea, Lise de la Salle, young soprano Regula Mühlemann, and American cellist Alisa Weilerstein.

Known for her passion for George Enescu’s music, German pianist Sina Kloke will make two appearances at this edition. Her latest album, Enescu Piano Works, is dedicated to the great composer and got an excellent reception from musical experts.

Lovers of classical music will also enjoy the presence of Elena Mosuc, one of the most appreciated sopranos of the moment. At the end of March 2019, Elena Mosuc achieved the extraordinary performance of winning the “Oscar della Lirica”, the most prestigious international award for opera music, the musical equivalent of the Oscars for cinema.

Soprano Rodica Vica returns to the Enescu Festival for a special event: Enescu’s oratorio The Undead (Strigoii), performed with the George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Gabriel Bebeselea. Roxana Constantinescu, a mezzo-soprano known for her sophisticated musicality, will star in the very first performance of the Te Deum dedicated to the 25th edition of the Festival, composed by the famous José Cura, for mezzo-soprano, choir, and children’s choir.

Venezuelan Gabriela Montero will take part in the series Music of the 21st Century as both pianist and composer, as she will perform her Latin Concerto for Piano and Orchestra alongside the Bucharest Symphony Orchestra. On the same evening, the work of another contemporary female composer, Julia Wolfe, is on the program of the Mihail Jora Philharmonic Orchestra of Bacau – conducted by Jessica Cottis, a charismatic and highly regarded figure in the field.

A unique and effervescent presence in the same series will be the Latvian accordionist Ksenija Sidorova, who will perform the work of Russian composer Efrem Podgaits in the Dogma Chamber Orchestra concert at the Radio Hall.

The Festival program also includes two of Romania’s most acclaimed multimedia directors, Carmen Lidia Vidu and Nona Ciobanu, who have prepared incredible performances for the audiences: Alexander von Zemlinsky’s Der Zwerg (‘The Dwarf’) and a special program of Stravinsky premieres, The Flood and Les Noces (‘The Wedding’), in a concert by the Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin, conducted by Vladimir Jurowski; and, respectively, Korngold’s Die tote Stadt in concert version, Grieg’s Peer Gynt, and Enescu’s The Undead.

The agenda of the George Enescu International Festival is however not reserved for only established names but also supports young musicians who have won the Enescu Competition. Yeon-Min Park, winner of the Piano Section in the 2020-2021 Enescu Competition, will take to the stage of the Grand Palace Hall alongside the Berlin Radio Orchestra, conducted by Vladimir Jurowski. She will also perform in a recital for the audience in Cluj-Napoca.

Tickets for the Enescu Festival

Ticket sales continue for this Jubilee Edition of the Festival. Preparations for the arrival of more than 3,500 artists are well underway, despite the pandemic. Organizers reconfirm the fact that the Enescu Festival will take place from August 28 to September 26 and that all concerts will observe the required sanitary and safety conditions. In the exceptional situation that a concert does not take place, tickets purchased for that event will be refunded.

Access to the Grand Palace Hall and the Radio Hall will be granted providing the sanitary criteria are being met, according to 70% of the hall capacity occupancy rules. Physical distancing will be mandatory and masks worn over the nose and mouth will be required at all times.

Given the extremely high demand for tickets, the organizers have decided that 100% of seats at the Romanian Athenaeum will go on sale and for this reason, audience access to the hall will be granted on presentation of a photo ID and one of the following:

  • Official proof of vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 (with a minimum of 10 days passed since completing the vaccination plan)
  • A negative result to a PCR test taken within 48 hours before the concert
  • Medical attestation of the fact that they are between the 15th and 180th day from testing negative after a confirmed infection with SARS-CoV-2
  • A negative result of a rapid antigen test certified by a medical unit, taken within 24 hours before the concert.

The same conditions will also apply for access to concerts in the Auditorium Hall.

Ticketing Information

Information on the purchase procedure and conditions of access is available on the Festival website, under the Tickets section. It is still possible that changes are made to the Program due to the pandemic. Access to the concert halls will only be allowed if sanitary conditions are observed; face masks will be mandatory indoors at all times.

The 2021 George Enescu International Festival is scheduled to take place between August 28 and September 26, 2021, with an exceptional musical program, sustained by over 3,500 international and Romanian artists for a record duration of 4 weeks, with measures in place to reduce potential health risks for audiences, artists, organizers, and journalists.

The full Program can be found on the website.