Early music festival kicks off in Radovljica

Radovljica – The quaint town of Radovljica in the north-west of the country will host the 40th iteration of its early music festival from 5 to 23 August. This year, the festival will focus on music from the 16th to the 20th century.

A total of ten concerts will feature renowned names such as soprano Amanda Forsythe, violinist Bojan Čičić, tenor Aco Aleksander Bišćević, double-bassist David Sinclair, the string quartet Altemps, the renaissance flute consort Phaedrus, the ensemble Opera Prima, the vocal ensemble Die Singphoniker, and the Fretwork Viol Consort.

Visitors will be able to enjoy musical masterpieces by Handel, Bach, Orff, Schubert, Onslow, Purcell, as well as Mozart, Pollini, and Bellini. In total, 52 musicians from 15 countries are set to perform.

Celebrating the festival’s anniversary will be the focus of tonight’s concert by a 12-member Baroque orchestra, put together to mark the occasion, Marija Kolar, president of the Radovljica Early Music Enthusiasts’ Association, told the STA.

The concert will be held under the baton of the festival’s art director Domen Marinčič, who is a lecturer in Hamburg.

During the festival, the Radovljica museum will mark composer Uroš Krek’s (1922-2008) centenary of birth by opening a memorial room.

The concerts will take place at Radovljica Manor and St Peter’s Church, and the Church of the Annunciation in the nearby village Velesovo. There will be a free shuttle service running from Ljubljana and Kranj.

Despite Covid restrictions the festival took place in 2020 and 2021 featuring a full programme. “We had a lot of visitors, the public’s interest in the festival might have been even greater than before, perhaps also because there was not a lot of other events,” said Kolar.

The organizers wish that Radovljica Festival would not take place simultaneously with the Seviqc early music festival in Brežice, which was moved from July to August both last year and this year.

The festivals are linked by common history as both are a result of musician Klemen Ramovš starting the Early Music Festival in 1982.