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The Warsaw Voice » Culture » March 18, 2009
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Beethoven for Easter
March 18, 2009 By P.M.    
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The Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival, now one of Warsaw's biggest classical music events, begins at the end of March. Concerts will be held in the Royal Palace, Warsaw Philharmonic and Wielki Theater-National Opera.

The festival's theme is Beethoven: Nature and Culture. The inaugural concert, with violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter and the Sinfonia Varsovia orchestra conducted by Krzysztof Penderecki, will be held at the Warsaw Philharmonic. The program includes Beethoven's Prometheus overture, Violin Concerto in D major and Symphony no. 7 in A major. One of the festival's highlights will be a concert on April 6 by the Monte Carlo Philharmonic, which is performing in Poland for the first time. The orchestra will play music by Franz Schubert and Felix Mendelssohn conducted by Yakov Kreizberg.

Other guest performers this year include the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Leipziger Streichquartett and the Tokyo String Quartet. During the festival there will be 21 concerts in the capital alone. Concerts and other events are also planned for cities including Gdańsk, Łódź, Wrocław and Cracow.

A performance of Handel's Brockes Passion by musicians from Berlin's Akademie fur Alte Musik and the Collegium Vocale Ghent closes the festival on April 10.

The first Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival was held in 1997 as part of the Cracow 2000 European City of Culture event. That year was the 170th anniversary of Beethoven's death. The festival is the brainchild of Elżbieta Penderecka, the wife of composer Krzysztof Penderecki. She has remained the festival's director to this day. The festival moved to Warsaw in 2004, and was quickly recognized as one of the most important artistic events in the capital.

March 29-April 10
Warsaw Philharmonic, 10 Sienkiewicza St.
Teatr Wielki-National Opera, 1 Teatralny Sq.
Royal Castle in Warsaw, 4 Zamkowy Sq.
Tickets: www.ticketonline.pl
Festival program: www.beethoven.org.pl
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