Festival Classique opens Thursday evening June 13, 2019 on the Zuiderstrand of Scheveningen with the new beach opera ‘Aida aan Zee’. For this performance, which is being performed three times, the festival brings together more than 350 musicians and dancers. The thirteenth edition of Festival Classique includes dozens of performances and concerts from 13 to 23 June in the Kurhaus, on the beach, in the harbor, on the boulevard and in the Ferris wheel.
“After the unprecedented success of the Carmina Burana last year, a sequel could not have been forthcoming,” says the new festival director Neeltje Leemans. “This summer, the sea and Zuiderstrand form the backdrop for the beach opera Aida aan Zee. Arranger Marijn van Prooijen and director David Prins adapted Aida to this semi-concertante and completely new performance. Main roles are played by, among others, soprano Kelly God, mezzo-soprano Lien Haegeman and tenor Marcel Reijans. A 300-member community choir has been set up especially for this occasion, which together with the singers from Theaterkoor Dario Fo will be responsible for the choir parts. The singers are accompanied by a twelve-member orchestra, consisting of a mix of a classical ensemble and a pop band. Choreographies by Junadry Leocaria and Shailesh Bahoran and numerous extras support the story. The performances will be attended by 3,500 people. Aida aan Zee is an initiative of Festival Classique, in co-production with Korzo and in collaboration with Muziektheater Hollands Diep, Kwekers in de Kunst and Zuiderstrandtheater.
Karima el Fillali and the Residentie Orchestra
The Dutch-Moroccan singer Karima el Fillali and the Residentie Orkest perform 1001-Nacht, a program dedicated to Sheherazade by the Russian composer Rimski-Korsakov. The work is based on stories from the book Vertellingen van 1001-Nacht. The Residentie Orkest plays all four parts of this symphonic poem. In between the parts, Karima el Fillali sings new songs in the classical Arabic tradition, accompanied by the orchestra. Her songs are always an introduction to the works that follow. Thanks to breathtaking video mapping projections on the walls of the Kurzaal in the Kurhaus, the music unfolds to the audience like a dream.
Graduate at the Kurhaus
Two students from the Royal Conservatory of The Hague will graduate during Festival Classique. Beniamino Paganini studies harpsichord and conducting, he takes an orchestra and choir with him for his exam in the chic Cor Ruyszaal of the Kurhaus. Violinist Laura Lunansky will give her graduation concert in the impressive and illustrious Kurzaal, where once names like violinist Yehudi Menuhin, Vladimir Horowitz and Igor Stravinsky made their appearance. “For me that is especially inspiring,” says Laura Lunansky. “Of course it is also exciting to share such a personal moment with a large audience. On the other hand: on stage I always feel like a child in a toy store. I also approach this performance as a real concert. ”
Peter R. de Wolf
Peter R. de Wolf is a new satirical music theater concert (16+) with actor Frans van Deursen and an ensemble of the Netherlands Chamber Orchestra conducted by Stef Collignon. At first we seem to witness the umpteenth performance of Peter and Wolf by Prokofiev, but Van Deursen takes on the role of the country’s best-known crime reporter and he rigorously manipulates the story. All loose ends and questions from the original story must be solved, the bottom brick must be on top. A classic example of crime journalism with Peter R. de Wolf as well as a leading role for De Vogel, a tough drug trader and a cuddle criminal.
Festival Classique also programs free performances every year. For example, Neo-Fanfare 9×13 premieres the brand new Les Fauves, a wordless musical theater performance set in an imaginary hotel lobby. For Neo-Fanfare 9×13, which combines contemporary music with fanfare, this is the start of a packed festival season. In addition, Sunset concerts are given in numerous beach bars and the graduation concerts are also freely accessible.