In 2024, the festival will celebrate the Year of Czech Music and mark 200 years since Czech composer Smetana's birth. Credit: Prague Spring Festival, via Facebook.

Prague Spring Festival 2024 To Feature Some 50 Concerts

The 79th Prague Spring International Music Festival will take place from 12 May to 3 June 2024, opening as traditionally with Bedrich Smetana’s My Country, performed by the Berliner Philharmoniker at the Municipal House in Prague, festival director Pavel Trojan told reporters today. The full festival programme includes around 50 concerts.

In 2024, the festival will celebrate the Year of Czech Music, whose ambassador at the festival will be conductor Jakub Hrusa, and mark 200 years since Czech composer Smetana’s birth.

Tickets to the festival concerts will be available on the festival website from 1 November.

The opening concert will be held under the baton of Berliner Philharmoniker chief conductor Kirill Petrenko, who has shown his exceptionally warm relationship with Czech music many times during his career, Trojan said.

The Berlin Philharmonic has been a regular guest at the Prague Spring festival, with seven appearances in total. The first was in 1966 with the legendary Herbert von Karajan, the most recent in 2014 with Sir Simon Rattle.

On 18 May, Hrusa will conduct the Orchestra of the National Academy of Santa Cecilia, where he has been the principal guest conductor since 2021. He will also conduct a concert performance of Smetana’s opera Libuse with top soloists, including Katerina Knezikova and Adam Plachetka, and the Prague Philharmonic Choir and the Czech Philharmonic on the two gala evenings on May 28 and 30.

Besides this, Hrusa will be one of the main speakers at the conference being prepared by Prague Spring as part of the Year of Czech Music.

The festival will offer the world premiere of Krystof Maratka’s Sanctuary. His violin concerto will be performed as part of the program of the French Radio Philharmonic Orchestra on 27 May.

The Philharmonic Orchestra of La Scala Opera in Milan will also visit the festival, led by its conductor Riccardo Chailla.

The program of the Prague Spring Festival also includes early music, such as the Belgian ensemble Collegium Vocale Gent, led by its founder, choirmaster and conductor Philippe Herreweghe, and Ton Koopman, who will visit the festival with the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir.

A festival novelty will be a day-long program for young audiences at the Forum Karlin arena called SpringTEEN, featuring a concert with 50 simultaneous pianos.

For the third time, Klangforum Vienna will become the resident ensemble of the Prague Offspring project, a weekend of new works from the world of contemporary music. Under the direction of conductor and composer Enno Poppe, the orchestra will perform the world premiere of six new works written by Czech and Slovak composers, commissioned by the Prague Spring Festival.

The final festival concert on 3 June will feature the European premiere of Superorganisms, composed by Miroslav Srnka and performed by the Czech Philharmonic under the baton of David Robertson. The program also includes music by other Czech composers, including Leos Janacek, Antonin Dvorak and Josef Suk.

This year’s Prague Spring Festival ended with a concert by the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Christoph Eschenbach, director of the Berlin Konzerthaus.
The 78th festival attracted around 24,000 classical music fans during its three-week run, and staged 40 concerts, ranging from mediaeval music to the works of living composers. The average attendance at concerts and accompanying events was 90%, and ticket sales reached CZK 25.1 million, according to the organisers.

Prague Spring Festival 2024 To Feature Some 50 Concerts
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