Friday 6 March 2020

Bath Festival 2020

Bath Festival
The Bath Festival, which runs from 15 to 24 May 2020, features a wide range of literature, music and more starting with Party in the City on Friday 15 May, when musicians, poets, bands and choirs will perform in more than 30 venues across the city, and the festival ends with the finale weekend when a range of artists perform in Bath Recreation Ground. In between, there is opera by Poulenc and Lehar, Ian Burnside's musical play about Wagner, the Heath Quartet in Beethoven, recitals from young artists and the reconvening of the icon Bath Festival Orchestra.

Yehudi Menuhin originally set up the Bath Festival Orchestra in 1959; the orchestra is being revived this year and will form a platform for young orchestral musicians. The orchestra debuts with a concert in the Assembly Rooms, when Peter Manning conducts Mozart's Linz Symphony, Ligeti's Ramfications, Brahms's Serenade in D, Op. 11 and Richard Strauss lieder with soprano Johanna Wallroth.

Poulenc's Le voix humaine is being given a highly intimate performance in a Georgian home, directed by David Pountney with soprano Claire Booth. Iain Burnside's theatre piece The View from the Villa explores the spaces between Wagner's Wesendonck Songs with mezzo-soprano Susan Bickley, baritone Matthew Brook and actor Victoria Newlyn. Whilst Iford Arts brings its production Lehar's The Merry Widow conducted by Oliver Gooch, directed by Simon Butteriss with Maire Flavin and James McOran Campbell.

Conductor Charles Hazelwood will lead the Paraorchestra, an integrated orchestra of disabled and non-disabled musicians, with soprano Victoria Oruwari in a performance of Gorecki's Sorrowful Songs beside the waters of the Roman Baths. The Bath Philharmonia is joined by the Band of the Royal Marines, conducted by Jason Thornton in Copland, Mozart, Janacek, Haydn and Tchaikovsky.

Other performers include the Gesualdo Six, pianist Bertrande Chamayou, pianist Tom Poster, and the Heath Quartet play Beethoven quartets across three concerts.

The Classical Music Rising Stars concerts, supported by Scala Radio, include coffee and cake before the performance served in convivial surroundings before the concert, with recitals from mezzo-soprano Marta Fontanals-Simmons, violinist Jonian Ilias Kadesha, trumpeter Matilda Lloyd, pianist Martin James Bartlett, and guitarist Sean Shibe.

Full details from the Bath Festival website.

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