Starting on May 9th: the third annual online auction of the Canadian Friends of the Trasimeno Music Festival! Eleven items are up for bids, with more to be added later. Do you want a private piano lesson with Angela Hewitt? She has a rule never to give them. Here's your chance! One for a student; one for an adult; one specifically in London on October 20/14 (the day after she performs at Wigmore Hall). Plus some of her performing wardrobe. Also on offer is a private recital with Dame Felicity Lott and Angela Hewitt on June 18/14.
To bid, please go to: https://www.24fundraiser.com/site/store/242
Here you can watch a NEW VIDEO showing excerpts of the 2013 Trasimeno Music Festival. You can also see it on our Official YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7A3gjALE8VM
How to begin? The week in which I present my Trasimeno Music Festival is always so intense that it would take thousands of words to describe it all! This year, even after many wonderful festivals in the past, was our best. So much thought goes into the programming, the choice of artists, the venues, the locations for the extra events and gala dinners, the logistics....you have no idea. And then of course I play myself a massive amount of repertoire during the week—much of it from memory. Some people ask why I play in six of the seven concerts. The answer is easy: if I didn’t I simply wouldn’t put on the festival. Why do all that work (for free, by the way—I don’t get one cent from it) and then not have the joy of performing with the wonderful musicians who, if they aren’t already, become best friends and colleagues? My audience which comes from all over the world could not be bettered—I am so proud of them, and I rarely use the word “proud”. Thank you to all who made it such a success! From the young musicians concert (which we must make a regular feature) to the final notes of Bach’s Art of Fugue which I performed for the first time all at once. In between the Orchestra della Toscana outdid themselves in two concerts, thanks to the magnificent work and energy of Finnish conductor Hannu Lintu. Soprano Barbara Hannigan, violinist Chloe Hanslip, clarinetist Mark Simpson, cellist Oliver Coates, and the Mandelring Quartet, all gave the very best of themselves in such a wide range of repertoire. Julian Barnes was a class act (as they say---not my vocabulary really, but he was!), and I think I might even have convinced him to repeat the experience of our Words and Music programme elsewhere in the world. Spread the word for next year! Now I have to think up another exciting programme for July 5-11, 2014.
Angela Hewitt - Artistic Director
The Trasimeno Music Festival has been singled out by Travel & Leisure Magazine as one of the Best Music Festivals in Italy! To read the article, click on the link below:
The 2012 Trasimeno Music Festival was a big success! It is satisfying to see how each year the enthusiasm and numbers grow. We had terrific artists this year: Anne Sofie von Otter (whose song recital was pure magic!); Pekka Kuusisto with his very special way of playing Bach on the violin; the tremendous synergy of the Australian String Quartet and the Quartetto di Cremona together playing the Mendelssohn Octet; conductor Gerard Korsten and the Orchestra della Toscana making a magnificent sound along with pianist Angela Hewitt in two concertos in the Church of San Domenico, Gubbio, and much more. Our audience is the most special in the entire world. They sit in total silence and listen to every note. It is amazing--all the more so that it is outdoors in the castle courtyard. Only the sound of the occasional "grillo" (cricket) or the pigeons cooing in the rafters. They came from all over the world, from South Africa to Australia, Finland to Japan, Atlanta (GA) to Tel Aviv. The three gala dinners were held in very special places this year, the last one at the Villa Schnabl in Monte del Lago on Lake Trasimeno. A spectacular view from the terrace where the aperitivo was held. It is so much work, and the money is always a worry (thanks again to all who made this possible--especially our private donors and Friends of the festival without whom we simply couldn't go on). But it makes everyone very happy, and for that it's worth it. See you in 2013 (June 29 to July 5)!
Angela Hewitt - Artistic Director
It is always an incredible feeling to get to the end of another edition of my Trasimeno Music Festival after all the preparation that goes into it throughout the year. Not only musical preparation—that is an immense job in itself, playing 6 different programmes in seven days—but also all the administration and organizing the goes on behind the scenes. What makes me most happy is to hear the level of artistry that the musicians attain, and this year we had a fantastic line-up: flautist Andrea Oliva playing Bach on the flute with a whole palette of colours; the young Carducci Quartet from England who excelled in a wide range of repertoire, including two quintets in which they were joined by Munich violist Burkhard Sigl; the singer Helena Juntunen whose dramatic singing was put to use in Beethoven’s “Ah! perfido” and a lieder recital; the Orchestra da Camera di Mantova in Mozart, Beethoven, and Schumann, led by the conductor I most admire, Hannu Lintu. The closing concert of the festival was in the Basilica of San Pietro in Perugia (a favourite venue of Herbert von Karajan) and we bravely did an all-Schumann programme for piano and orchestra. I will never forget this. It was one of the most demanding but exhilarating concerts I have ever given. And then to see all my friends, old and new, from all over the world gathered together in one place and sharing the same experience. That is another thing that gives me great happiness. A novelty this year was a concert featuring young artists. It was held in the small piazza of San Savino, a picturesque borgo overlooking Lake Trasimeno. The artists were from Italy (Marta Marinelli on the harp, Gianluca Campo on flute) and from Canada (Annie Yim, piano; Kerson Leong, violin; and his brother Stanley, cello), playing in all different combinations a wide variety of music. Then exiting the piazza, the entire audience was treated to a buffet supper provided by the people of San Savino—a lovely surprise! Thank you to all who made this festival such a resounding success. See you in 2012!
Angela Hewitt - Artistic Director
A new video is now on YouTube showing excerpts of the 2010 Trasimeno Music Festival. You can watch it here:
I never thought I would enjoy it so much. Normally I only give a masterclass that lasts three hours, on a day when I often have an orchestral rehearsal or am recovering from a big recital the day before. This was the first time ever that I gave one that lasted a week. I was dreading it somewhat—wondering if I would be able to sustain the interest for the pupils, hoping that I wouldn’t get bored. That wasn’t the case at all. Thanks to the students themselves (all girls funnily enough!), we had the most marvellous week together at the Auditorium Marianum in Perugia (the masterclass was a promotion of my Trasimeno Music Festival Association). I had asked the young pianists (aged 18 to 30) to prepare a huge programme (that already demanded a certain level), and we went through vast amounts of repertoire from Bach to George Crumb. The first day and a half were spent on the classics and romantics; then we had an afternoon devoted to Bach, and the girls got so excited that we had to continue the next day. One day we went through seven concertos—2 Bach, 1 Ravel, and 4 Mozart—with me playing the second piano (see photo on the Masterclass gallery, along with students from left to right, Annie Yim, Silvie Cheng, and Julia Hamos). They came from Canada, the USA, the UK, and Italy (the others were Harriet Stubbs, and the Duo Dama from Terni here in Umbria who were the recipients of the Pasqualina Pat Adamo Scholarship generously given by one of the festival's Canadian Friends of Italian ancestry). I also took them all to Assisi one evening, and of course out to see Lake Trasimeno. At the final concert they really played so much better than when they first arrived, and I was almost in tears seeing their happiness and progress. But before you all get excited about attending the next one, let me say that this was something quite unique and I won’t have time, I don’t think, next summer to do the same. During my mini-sabbatical it was possible, but next summer is already looking like one of the busiest yet with tons of repertoire, both new and old. So I can’t afford a week when I don’t work on my own things. But perhaps sometime there will be another occasion. I very much hope so.
What a joy it has all been! The sixth Trasimeno Music Festival was really the best yet, and for sure will be hard to equal in the future. We had fantastic audiences all week, both in quality and numbers. Their silence throughout the concerts was truly remarkable and was commented on by the musicians. They had come to listen and weren’t going to miss any of it. We had people from all over the world—Canada, USA (including a group from Spivey Hall, Atlanta), Australia, the UK, Japan, Hungary, Germany, Denmark, France, Switzerland, Hong Kong, and more Italians than ever before which pleased me. My fellow artists were all fantastic, and I was so happy not only performing along with them, but listening to them from the audience. The cellist Pieter Wispelwey (with me in the photo) performed in four of the seven concerts, playing Bach, Schubert, Haydn, and Chopin (his Chopin Sonata was to me a thing of great beauty and made all the long hours learning it worthwhile). The Quartetto di Cremona, virtually the only string quartet in the country that is making a name for themselves outside of Italy, outdid themselves in two concerts, with an especially beautiful “Death and the Maiden” Quartet by Schubert. Soprano Ilona Domnich gave a charming rendition of some Chopin songs in the final evening (no rain at all this year, so we were able to enjoy the magic of the courtyard of the Castle of the Knights of Malta for all the chamber concerts). Conductor Hannu Lintu galvanized the Orchestra da Camera di Mantova in a performance of Beethoven’s Second Symphony that I, for one, will long remember. It combined terrific energy and passion with a beautiful elegance in the Larghetto. If our work together on Beethoven’s Fourth Piano Concerto is an indication of how easy it is to combine our musical personalities, then the many engagements we have together over the next few years will all be highlights for me. In Gubbio I conducted the orchestra, led by the indefatigable Carlo Fabiano, myself in two Mozart Concertos, not an easy thing to do with a “real” conductor sitting in the audience. They are excellent musicians who come from all over Italy (including the first oboist from La Scala). Our literary guest was Vikram Seth, interviewed (as was Ian McEwan last year) by Canadian broadcaster Eric Friesen. I regret that I didn’t have time at home to accompany him in some Schubert songs as he had requested. Every minute of my time was taken up, and I hardly slept all week. Rehearsals, concerts, meeting fans, running a restaurant at home for the musicians (11 for lunch; six for dinner)….there was scarcely a moment to breathe. But half the fun of such a festival is spending time with my colleagues and meeting the public. I must thank my whole staff and personal assistants who also outdid themselves this year. There are only a few of us, but each one is essential and without them nothing would happen. I haven’t given a thought to next year’s programme yet. First I have to see the results of this year. But fingers crossed that we can go on and have another exceptional week of music in this most beautiful part of Italy. And a huge thank you to all who donated to become a Friend of the festival. Your support made it possible.
Angela Hewitt - Artistic Director
During the 2009 Trasimeno Music Festival, we made a short video that can be seen here and on YouTube: