Director of the Dvořák Prague Festival, Jan Simon, at the press conference of the Dvořák Prague International Music Festival on the occasion of the presentation of the program of the 16th year of the festival. March 7, 2023, Prague.
Prague – The Dvořák Prague International Music Festival, which will take place in the Rudolfinum from September 7 to 25, will be a tribute not only to the composer Antonín Dvořák, but also to Johannes Brahms. Dvořák and Brahms, whose birth will be 190 years this May, will be most closely connected on September 13 at a concert by the Vienna Philharmonic, where, under the baton of Jakub Hrůš, Brahms's Second Piano Concerto will be played first with soloist Igor Levit, and then Dvořák's Eighth Symphony. The director of Dvořák Prague, Jan Simon, informed journalists about this today.
“Brahms is a really essential person for Dvořák's artistic growth, because he recommended his works to his publisher Fritz Simrock, which ensured Dvořák's publicity and the availability of his work. An author who does not have a publisher can have a great invention, but if his work is not distributed, then his life is much more complicated,” Simon told ČTK.
The ceremonial opening of the festival on September 7, at which Dvořák's Cello Concerto and the New World Symphony will traditionally be performed, will be arranged by the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra and its music director Paavo Järvi, cellist Anastasia Kobekina will perform a solo part. The World Orchestras festival lineup will also feature a double performance by the Israel Philharmonic with its music director Lahav Shani and violinist Gil Shaham. On Sunday, September 10, Brahms's Violin Concerto will be performed, followed by the Double Concerto for violin and cello a day later.
For the second year now, the Dvořák Collection program series focuses on complete performances of Dvořák's string quartets, and thus merges its content with the Chamber Series. Under the curatorial supervision of members of the Pavel Haas Quartet, Dvořák's compositions are performed by top Czech and international quartets – this year, for example, the Belcea Quartet or the Schumann Quartet. As part of the Chamber series, the quartet will be expanded by another clarinetist Sharon Kamová or pianist Bertrand Chamayou.
As part of the Brahms 190 series, listeners will hear Brahms's First Piano Concerto performed by Paul Lewis, which will be performed on September 25 at the end of this year's festival, and will be partnered by the Czech Radio Symphony Orchestra with its chief conductor Petr Popelka.
Orchestra-in-residence This season, Dvořák's Prague is also home to the Czech Philharmonic. It will be led by Sakari Oramo, principal guest conductor Tomáš Netopil, and in the dual role of soloist and conductor, Sir András Schiff, who included the concert in Dvořák's Prague in the celebration of his upcoming 70th birthday.
The program series For the Future will focus on the upcoming musical generation. It will offer the final rounds of the Concertino Praga competition in the chamber and solo categories, and on September 17 a performance by scholarship holders of the Academy of Chamber Music with its artistic director Tomáš Jamník. After last year's premiere, Dvořák's Prague will return to the foyer of the Bořislavka Center with a series of four early evening concerts. Also this year, proceeds from the entrance fee will be donated to the Karel Komárek Family Foundation Scholarship Fund for talented young musicians.
Bethlehem Chapel will be the venue for concerts of the new Academic Cycle program series. The common goal of the Czech University in Prague and the festival is to encourage interest in classical music concerts among students and teachers.
Ticket pre-sales started today at www.dvorakovapraha.cz. of the festival, where the complete program of the festival can be found.
Last year, the fifteenth year of the Dvořák Prague Festival featured 15 concerts in the Dvořák Hall of the Rudolfinum and another 15 performances and accompanying events at other venues. According to the organizers, 15,000 people visited the festival. The festival, with a budget of approximately 60 million crowns, returned to the level of 2019 after two years of covid in the interest of the audience for tickets.