It’s the series of spectacular returns to the joy of classical music, in musical afternoons hosted by one of the most beautiful concert halls in Romania – the Romanian Athenaeum.
Musicians who made the concert halls seem too small in the previous editions return to the Enescu Festival in 2021. Joshua Bell and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields return on September 7 after four years; Ensemble L’Arpeggiata, together with Christina Pluhar (musical direction) and countertenor Philippe Jaroussky, bring a new program to Bucharest – Stabat mater. Caldara & Pergolesi; Yuja Wang appears in the double role of soloist and conductor, together with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, and Maria João Pires delights the audience with a new Mozart concerto. Two singers that were in Romania for the first time in the 2019 Festival will appear again in front of the Romanian public, now in an orchestral company - sopranos Diana Damrau and Joyce DiDonato. And a beloved presence at the Festival, conductor Vasily Petrenko, returns this time to the Romanian Athenaeum, together with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the violinist Julia Fischer.
The agenda of the George Enescu International Festival, however, is not only dedicated to well-known personalities but always aims to support young musicians, to be a genuinely outstanding opportunity for the Enescu Competition’s laureates to advance their careers. Thus, the winners of the 2020-2021 Enescu Competition in the Violin and Cello Sections will appear as soloists at the Athenaeum in the Brahms’ Double Concerto, with the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, while the winning pianist will perform on the stage of the Palace Hall with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin.
To mention just a few of the repertoire proposals of the series: members of the Berlin Philharmonic present a program entitled Rediscovering Enescu on September 20; Alexandra Dariescu performs the Piano Concerto by Clara Schumann (last played in Romania in 2006); the Belgian pianist Julien Libeer, an ardent promoter of Dinu Lipatti's music, performs the Concertino in classical style with the Bremen Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra; and Bach’s Johannes-Passion can be heard on September 11, with the Münchener Bach-Chor and the Münchener Bach-Orchester under the baton of conductor Hansjörg Albrecht.