Between tradition and innovation, from monuments to social change – the Styriarte moves from 23 June to 23 July 2023 along the paths of the heroines and heroes of past and modern times.
Inspired by Johann Joseph Fuxʼ baroque opera “Costanza e fortezza” from 1723, in which Rome must be saved from the invasion of the Etruscans, the Styriarte 23 sets out in search of heroes and heroines in all their shapes and forms. The starting point for this search is, how could it be more fitting, the Palais Attems, where the Styriarte team has spent months fine-tuning and polishing the programme of the summer festival. There, at the Styriarte opening on 23 June, the audience will get insights into the most magnificent baroque palace in Graz: in groups they will be sent on a journey through baroque and rococo and hear about the legendary King Arthur in the tones of Henry Purcell and the strong women of the 18th century in Mozart’s heavenly song. From the baroque palace, the Styriarte travels on to the most important baroque palace complex in Styria. Alfredo Bernardini chases the ghosts of Roman superheroes through the Eggenberg Palace courtyard with a concert version of the Fux opera “Costanza e fortezza” on 24 June.
Probably the most popular knight, Don Quixote, will be brought to life by the Burgtheater actress Birgit Minichmayr on 25 June when she reads about fighting windmills accompanied by authentic 17th century Spanish music played by the Unicorn Ensemble led by Michael Posch. On 27 June, the “Pop Heroes” pay a visit to the Styriarte: the US piano duo Anderson & Roe play Mozart, Freddie Mercury, John Lennon and Paul McCartney – in their very own and fresh way. Eddie Luis and Die Gnadenlosen offer hits at the highest level on two evenings. On 28 and 29 June, the heroes and heroines of the hit scene will honour everyday heroes with songs like “Mein Mädel ist nur eine Verkäuferin” (My girl is just a saleswoman) and “Hey Boss, ich brauch mehr Geld” (Hey boss, I need more money). And with the support of the sponsors, the Styriarte will give these everyday heroes a special treat: As a thank you, people in the care professions and in elementary education are invited to performances of two of the most popular events.
They are back! The popular picnic concerts had to be suspended for the past three years, but are now returning to the Eggenberg Schlosspark with “Leonore” on 2 July and with “Dido trifft Xantippe” on 16 July. They are all heroes too: at “Superman & Co” on 6 July in the Helmut List Halle, Hollywood composers John Williams and Alan Silvestri meet Johann Strauss and Gioachino Rossini when Leonard Eröd and his six crazy bassoons perform the soundtracks of the blockbusters. There will be two superheroes of classical music at the Styriarte 23: the young Beethoven in the Stainz Parish Church on 8 and 9 July and the already deaf “Beethoven!!” in the Helmut List Halle on 7 July. In this very special project, Thomas Höft imagines the answers of the great Ludwig to the questions of his visitors, which have been preserved in Beethoven’s conversation books. Karl Markovics will read.
In addition to many other heroes such as the Brazilian soprano Bruno de Sá, who will sing the role of “Cleopatra” in parts of a Handel opera, Harriet Tubman, whose story is told in “Underground Railroad”, or Cameron Carpenter, probably the world’s most extravagant organist –tribute will also be paid to a Styrian world star: “Hasta la vista, baby!” is the motto of the musical hike around the lake Thaler See on 22 July. There, Styrian Brass will play film music from “Terminator” and Tobias Kochseder and his friends will make Arnold Schwarzenegger’s commitment to the environment and nature their theme. Conductor Jordi Savall is also concerned with nature, this time with an all-women’s orchestra from Le Concert des Nations, which will bring Vivaldi’s Four Seasons to blossom in the Helmut List Halle on 22 July. And Jordi Savall will conjure up one of his magnificent historical panoramas in the Helmut List Halle for the festival’s finale on 23 July: this time dedicated to the French national heroine “Johanna von Orleans” (Joan of Arc).
On 15 July the second bicycle concert in the Styriarte history will be sporty again, heading for squares and streets in Graz that are already or will be named after Styrian heroines. Innovative will also be Beethoven’s 3rd Symphony “Eroica” on 14 July, which, staged by Adrian Schvarzstein, will be conquered by the Styriarte Youth Orchestra conducted by Mei-Ann Chen.
Shh! There is one more piece of news. Since 23 January you can find the digital PLACE for HEROES AND HEROINES on the Styriarte website, where the public can present real, fictitious and very personal heroes and heroines. For a donation of €10, a portrait of a heroine or hero can be submitted and the PLACE for HEROES AND HEROINES can be filled with bold and inspiring people. The proceeds from the donation will support an inclusive sports team from Styria, the Inklusionsteam Joglland.
The entire programme of the Styriarte 2023 is available here!