1/9/2008 To 31/10/2008
Where: State Opera House
Opening Hours: 7.30pm
The Prague Autumn Festival ends the string of major European summer festivals in the same way that the Prague Spring Festival opened up the continent-wide artistic frenzy five months earlier. Although not as long established, Prague Autumn has, since 1991, rapidly gained a reputation for attracting the world`s great artists and ensembles. The 2004 festival includes homages to both Dvorák and Janácek in their respective anniversary years, with visiting orchestras from Monte Carlo, Manchester, Bamberg, Berlin, Frankfurt, Paris and Moscow.
This year being both the 150th anniversary of Janácek`s birth and the 100th anniversary of Dvorák`s death, the festival has one or the other in most programmes. The Monte Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra opens the event with two concerts (12 & 13 September) with conductor Marek Janowski, the first including the world première of Josef Bohác`s symphonic drama Cyrano.
Xiamen Opera from China brings its opera The Song of Eternal Regret, about the love of an emperor for a concubine (13 September), followed by concerts by the Prague Philharmonia (14 September), including the world première of Zdenek Lukás` Le canzoni della vita e dell` amore, and the mighty Czech Philharmonic (15 September).
On 15 & 16 September Alfonso Moreno leads his 25-strong Xalapa Guitar Orchestra from the guitar in a varied programme ranging from Russia to Spain. American conductor Hugh Wolff brings his Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra for two Bohemian inspired concerts (17 & 18 September), as does Gianandrea Noseda with his BBC Philharmonic Orchestra from Manchester (19 & 20 September).
The following night the Czech Philharmonic returns, this time with new chief conductor Zdenìk Mácal, before the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra dazzles with a Spanish programme (22 September). John Nelson brings his Ensemble orchestral de Paris (23 September), Jonathan Nott his Bamberg Symphony (24 & 25 September) and Lior Shambadal his Berlin Symphony (26 & 27 September), the latter with Bohuslav Förster`s version of the Cyrano de Bergerac story in the first concert.
The Spanish theme is brought to a conclusion with two nights by Paco Peña and his group, performing a Flamenco Requiem (28 & 29 September), while the Prague Radio Symphony returns (29 September) in a Russian programme to pave the way for the festival`s final two concerts (30 September & 1 October) by the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Yuri Siminov. The first concert celebrates Prokofiev, while the second - once again - salutes Bohemia.