June 26 to July 26, 2015

… and laughed :)

Classical music is supposed to be serious business. Why else would we separate popular music fromserious music? The styriarte will remove this separation: the 2015 styriarte Festival is all about laughter – in all its forms. It will resound with liberating laughter as well as malicious mockery, with the jester of the Middle Ages as well asthe Opera buffa, with the romantic irony as well as the bitter sarcasm of the 20th century.

In Nikolaus Harnoncourt’s world, laughter is frowned upon, as it alwaysbears the seed of malice. Hence, his three large-scale productions represent the corrective element of the 2015 styriarte, so to speak. In Stainz, Harnoncourt conducts Haydn – the master of brilliant wit. Of course, his Symphony No. 97 is followed by the “Kettledrum Mass”, a testimony to the deadly seriousness of the Revolutionary Wars. After all these battles had been fought, Ludwig van Beethovencomposed his “Missa solemnis” as a “prayer for inner and outer peace”. For the first time, Harnoncourt will conduct this piece in the original sound of his Concentus Musicus Wien – a memorial within this styriarte of cheerfulness. Antonín Dvořák’smood swings were legendary: all of a sudden,his laughter would turn into tears, just like his music, which Harnoncourt will present together with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe at the Stefaniensaal.

It’s not a long way from Dvořák to The Good Soldier Švejk, whose absurd humourturned the machinery of the Austro-Hungarian administration upside down. One of the 2015 styriarte SOAPs is dedicated to him, coupled of course with music by Dvořák. The other SOAP heroes in July 2015 come from Austria, Hungary and Italy: György Ligeti, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Gioachino Rossini, all of whom were notorious for their very special sense of humour.

The Austrians and Germans, the Italians and the English all have an entirely different kind of humour. This is anobservation anyone can make. At the styriarte,it is tangible: the Italians come to Graz as specialistsin buffonesque humour, with Rossini and his “Barber of Seville”,staged by Michael Hofstetter and Peer Boysen – in German! Already in 1819, the people of Grazsucceeded inputting Rossini’s humour into German words. This first German translation of the “Barber” will now return to its birthplace for the 2015 styriarte. In response to the Italian Rossini, the English counterwith their“British Humour”, the Catalan Jordi Savall with music by Tobias Hume and the Austrian HK Gruber with his “Frankenstein!!”. Laughter is explicitly encouragedin all these pieces. And it is supposed to be healthy as well. After all,based on Genesis 17:17, the styriarte laughter hasbiblical legitimacy: Abraham fell facedown and “...he laughed” when his God told him that he would become a father again at the age of one hundred. It is exactly this laughter that the 2015 styriarte owes its motto and inspiration to.

Friday, June 26 – Graz Schlossberg, 6pm

… und lachte

Opening of the styriarte festival 2015

with very cheerful starters to the 2015 styriarte programme

and as a finale:

„A Little Nightmare Music“

with Igudesman & Joo (Kasemattenbühne, 8.30pm)

Netnakisum, Vokalensemble Lalá, Igudesman & Joo etc.

Fest on the Schlossberg: free of charge

Prices for the finale at the Kasematten stage: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

A large open-air event for adults and children between the Bürgerbastei, the Uhrturm and the HackherLöwe. The topics of the laughing styriarte will be staged in small portions at the most beautiful locations on the Schlossberg. And for the finale, the extraordinarily funny duo Igudesman & Joo will perform their music cabaret “A Little Nightmare Music” at the Kasemattenbühne on the Schlossberg. For this final act, you will need a ticket, but it will alsoresound all over the Schlossberg plateau. Here and everywhere else on the hill, admission is free.

Saturday, June 27 – Monastery St. Lambrecht, 6pm

Der Name der Rose

Texts from Umberto Eco’s novel “The Name of the Rose”

music from the 14th century in Italy (Francesco Landini a. o.)

chorales and early polyphony

Ensemble Santenay:

Julla von Landsberg, vocals & organetto

Elodie Wiemer, recorder

Szilárd Chereji, viella

Orí Harmelin, lute

Wiener Choralschola

Michael Dangl, reading

Price: EUR 46

Laughter has always been a thorn in the side of religious fanatics: in his bestseller “The Name of the Rose”, Umberto Eco describes how a fanatic friarin early-Trecento Italy becomes a murderer in order to concealAristotle’sbook on comedyfrom the eyes of mankind. The styriarte exposes his dark deeds – within the ancient walls of a monastery, with Michael Dangl as the narrator and with authentic music from the 14th century.

Saturday, June 27 – Stefaniensaal, 8pm

Sunday, June 28 – Stefaniensaal, 8pm

Dvořák pur

Dvořák: The Golden Spinning Wheel, op. 109

Symphony no. 8 in G major, op. 88

A lecture-concert, presented by Nikolaus Harnoncourt

Chamber Orchestra of Europe

Conductor: Nikolaus Harnoncourt

Prices: EUR 125 / 100 / 75 / 50 / 25

Dvořák’sSymphony No. 8 opens with amovementof deep melancholy until the birdcall of a flutecomes in to awaken the spirits of the Bohemian forests. Nikolaus Harnoncourt and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe enjoythe sudden changes of mood in Dvořák’s music to the full. 16 years after his legendary recordingat the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Harnoncourt presents his Dvořák without any wisdom of age – just as juicy and youthful as at the premiere. To ensure that the audience does not miss a single detail from the fairytaleof“The Golden Spinning Wheel”, Harnoncourt willlead the audience through the evening himself – in his figurative language. Laughing is permitted, even if the subject is deadly serious.

Sunday, June 28 – Schloss Eggenberg, 11am

Opera buffa

A matinee at Planetensaal

followed by a picnic in the palace park

Mozart: Serenade in C minor, K 388

Harmoniemusik arrangements from “Le nozze di Figaro”, K 492

Harmoniemusik arrangements from “The Barber of Seville”

Ensemble Zefiro:

Alfredo Bernardini & Paolo Grazzi, oboe

Lorenzo Coppola & Danilo Zauli, clarinet

Dileno Baldin & Francesco Meucci, French horn

Alberto Grazzi & Giorgio Mandolesi, bassoon

Prices: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

Picnic box: EUR 15

Mozart and Rossini managed to evoke much more than justa good mood with their opere buffe.Human misery, wrapped with the most beautiful melodies– this also works without a singer, with only the wind section of the Harmoniemusik. Being Italian themselves, the wind players of Zefiro know exactly how to play with breathtaking beautywhile beingexcruciatingly funny at the same time. And after the concert in the Planetensaal,the event moves to the picnic lawn in the gorgeouspalace grounds. Tuck in while the music plays.

Monday, June 29 – Schloss Eggenberg, 8pm

Cello Duello

Haydn: Duett in D major

Servais: Caprice

Eichberg: Toccata

Barrière: Sonata no. 4 in G major

Popper: Suite

Paganini: Variations on Rossini’s “Mosè”

Cello Duello:

Jens Peter Maintz, violoncello

Wolfgang Emanuel Schmidt, violoncello

Preise: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

Two master cellists break down the prejudice about the humourless Germans in a playful way. The two professors from Berlin engage – rather unacademically –in a “Cello Duello”.With a wink, they juggle with the rapid cascades of Popper and Paganini or have an ironic musicalconversation à la Haydn and Barrièrre. To put it simply: have a good time! Or as the Berliner Zeitung put it in their headline: “Salto mortale on strings”.

Tuesday, June 30– Orpheum, 8pm

Scherzi musicali

Monteverdi: Comic scenes from “Scherzi musicali” (1628) and from his operas

Marini: scherzos, canzonettes a. o.

La Venexiana:

Francesca Lombardi Mazzulli, soprano

Alberto Allegrezza, & Alessio Tosi, tenors

Mauro Borgioni, baritone

Efix Puleo & Daniela Godio, violin

Luca Moretti, viola

Alberto Lo Gatto, double bass

Chiara Granata, Baroque harp / Gabriele Palomba, chitarrone

Direction: Claudio Cavina, harpsichord

Prices: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

As his only comic operahas been lost over the course of time, one has to look elsewhere for the comedy in Monteverdi’smusic: in his madrigal books. The specialists of La Venexiana contrast his“Scherzi musicali”with the grotesque scenes from the operas. An evening full oferotically charged humour –tailor-made for Francesca Lombardi Mazzulli and her colleagues from the lagoon city of Venice. The first part of vocal fireworks at the Orpheum Graz, which, after all,got its name from Orpheus, the divine singer.

Wednesday, July 1 – Orpheum, 8pm

British Humour

Cross-country through the heights of a cappella singing

with music by William Byrd, Giovanni Gabrieli,

George Gershwin, John Dowland, Andrew Lloyd-Webber,

The Beatles, Duke Ellington and others


(A-cappella ensemble)

Prices: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

Whenever these Britons appear on stage, it is impossible suppress a smile:the eight singers of Voces8 do not only sing with exceptional beauty, they have alsoperfected theart of singing a cappella with a measure of understatement and more than a pinch of “British Humour”. Whether it’s Gershwin or Gabrieli, John Dowland or James Bond –for each piece,they find the perfect formation, flawless sounds and the most suitable facial expression.The second part of the vocal fireworks at the Orpheum Graz, which started the day before.

Wednesday, July 1 & Thursday, July 2 – Seifenfabrik Graz, 8pm

Yitzhak: und Gott lachte

Jewish humour and the music of the Klezmorim

Giora Feidman, clarinet

Gitanes Blondes:

Mario Korunic, violin

Konstantin Ischenko, accordion

Christoph Peters, guitar

Simon Ackermann, double bass

Miguel Herz-Kestranek, reading

Prices: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

Music can save lives – and so can humour. This concept is repeated in the songs sung and jokes told by Jewish families. “Yitzhak”, “he laughed” – this is what the patriarch Abraham named his son. Giora Feidmansmiles with every sound from his clarinet as well.It has become the symbol for Klezmer, the music of the joy of life, which even survived the misery of the ghettos. In Graz, Feidmann’s clarinet pairs with the sharp Jewish humour of the stories brought along by Miguel Herz-Kestranek. The opening to a seriesfeaturing literature and music,always heldon Thursday nightsat the Seifenfabrikin a café atmosphere.

Friday, July 3 – Helmut List Halle, 7pm

Sunday, July 5 – Helmut List Halle, 11am (matinee)

Tuesday, July 7 – Helmut List Halle, 7pm

Der Barbier von Sevilla

Gioachino Rossini: The Barber of Seville

(Comic opera in the German version first performed in Graz in 1819. Translated by Ignaz Kollmann)

Marie Friederike Schöder, soprano (Rosina)

Daniel Johannsen, tenor (Almaviva)

Miljenko Turk, bass (Figaro)

Josef Wagner, bass (Basilio)

Bibiana Nwobilo, soprano (Berta)

Ludwig Mittelhammer, baritone (Fiorillo), a. o.

styriarte Festspiel-Orchester

Conductor: Michael Hofstetter

Scenic arrangements: Peer Boysen

Prices: EUR 90 / 70 / 50 / 32 / 21

Rossini’s “Barber” was not an immediate success at the 1816 premiere in Rome, but the hissing of the ill-tempered critics couldn’t stop Figaro’s worldwide success. As early as 1819, it had reached Graz where the German translation of the“Barber” was brought to the stage for the first time. Michael Hofstetter and his stage director Peer Boysenbring this version to light again. The young team of singers and the styriarte Festival Orchestraplaying on gut stringswill do the rest to turn this evening into a firework display ofRossini’s music.

Saturday, July 4 – Freilichtmuseum Stübing, 6pm

(in case of rain on July 5) end at c. 10pm

Mit’n Kopf zsamm …

A small baroque court society looks for fun in the Stübing valley. A cheerful group of farmers see their behaviour as an opportunity for a delightful parody.

Neue Hofkapelle Graz

Citoller Tanzgeiger

Adrian Schvarzstein, factotum, a. o.

Price: EUR 33

What happens when an aristocratic baroque couple, accompanied by their court ensemble, winds up in rural Stübing?Lots of unusual, funny, erotic and inflammatoryantics, that’s for sure. Especially since a cunning servanthas deliberately arranged this game of confusion and the country folk find the whole spectacleoutright hilarious. A styriarte outingthat not only promises a tailor-maderole for virtuoso comedian Adrian Schvarzstein, but also a great deal of fun and musical contrasts, featuring the baroque experts of the Neue Hofkapelle Graz and the passionate Citoller Tanzgeigerfolk musicians.And yes, of course there will be dancing as well!

Saturday, July 4 – Stefaniensaal, 8pm

Sunday, July 5 – Stefaniensaal, 8pm

Monday, July 6 – Stefaniensaal, 8pm

Missa solemnis

Beethoven: Missa solemnis in D major, op. 123

Laura Aikin, soprano

Bernarda Fink, alto

Johannes Chum, tenor

Ruben Drole, bass

Arnold Schoenberg Chor

Concentus Musicus Wien

Conductor: Nikolaus Harnoncourt

Prices: EUR 150 / 120 / 90 / 60 / 25

Nikolaus Harnoncourt conducts Beethoven’s “Missa solemnis” in the original sounds of the Concentus Musicus Wien for the first time. For this unique event, the festival will take a break from the cheer and will become serious for the course of three evenings. The Arnold Schoenberg Chor will take up the challenge of Beethoven’s extreme acoustic range. The audience can look forward to once again seeingthe four wonderful soloists, who have alreadytakena variety of different roles,ranging from Handel to Offenbach, in Graz.

Tuesday, July 7 – Schloss Eggenberg, 8pm

Der Kongress tanzt

Schubert: Marche Militaire in D major, op. 51/2, D 733

Grande Marche in G minor, op. 40/2, D 819

Four Polonaises, op. 75, D 599

Fantasy in F minor, op. 103, D 940

Beethoven: Three marches in C major, E flat major und D major, op. 45

Fugue for piano four hands in B flat major, op. 134

GrauSchumacher Piano Duo:

Andreas Grau & Götz Schumacher, piano

Prices: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

It was not only the aging Beethoven whose laughter was brought to ahalt by the Congress of Vienna. The young Viennese liberals had to stand by helplessly as well while the hopes of their generation were destroyed by the elite, whoenjoyed themselves at the Vienna Redoutensälewhile secretlyestablishing tyranny in Europefor decades to come. Schubert dedicated some of his most beautiful and sad works for piano four-hands to this contradiction. Beethoven toofirst composed magnificent marches for those in power, only to predict their downfallin the frenzy of the “Great Fugue” years later.

Wednesday, July 8 – Stefaniensaal, 8pm

Das Grab ist meine Freude

Franz Schubert: Choirs on the edge of the grave

(Totengräberlied, D 38, Der Geistertanz, D 116, a. o.)

Johannes Brahms: motets (Warum ist das Licht gegeben den Mühseligen a. o.)

Liebeslieder-Walzer, op. 52

Arnold Schoenberg Chor

Direction: Erwin Ortner

Prices: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

The Viennese poet Salomon Hermann Mosenthal used to joke that Brahms would sing“Das Grab ist meine Freude” (the grave is my greatest pleasure) whenever he was in a good mood.Franz Schubert took his very own pleasure in funeral songs and grave diggers’tunes as well – not LutheranNorth German, but Viennese-morbid. The Arnold Schoenberg Chorplunges with passion into this tension between life and death, between bitterness and irony when singing Brahms and Schubert at the Stefaniensaal – led fantastically by Erwin Ortner.

Thursday, July 9 – Seifenfabrik Graz, 8pm


A medieval music programme from Till Eulenspiegel’s era with songs and instrumental music from the “Carmina burana”, an anonymous manuscript from London and a reading from the oldest version of the story of Till Eulenspiegel “Ein kurtzweilig Lesen von Dyl Ulenspiegel, … wie er sein leben volbracht hat” (around 1510/1515)

Ensemble Oni wytars

Direction: Marco Ambrosini, nyckelharpa

Julius Feldmeier, reading

Prices: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

Johannes Grüninger, a publisher from Strasbourg, promised his readers“an entertaining read”, when he printed “Dyl Ulenspiegel” in 1510. Eulenspiegel’s ride through the pots of the market women became a legend and has inspired many, including Richard Strauss, to compose music. Marco Ambrosini found the matching music to Eulenspiegel’sjokes in a famous medieval collection: the “Carmina Burana”. Furthermore,Julius Feldmeier will capture the audience inan entertaining reading. This is the second evening of our series featuring literature and musicat the Seifenfabrik.

Friday, July 10 – Helmut List Halle, 8pm

Sunday, July 12 – Helmut List Halle, 11am *


Mendelssohn: A Midsummernight’s Dream (Overture), op. 21

HK Gruber: Frankenstein!! A pan-demonium for chansonnier and orchestra after children’s rhymes by H.C. Artmann

Korngold: Much Ado about Nothing, op. 11 (Suite)

Strauss: Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks, op. 28

HK Gruber, chansonnier

styriarte Festspiel-Orchester

Conductor: Michael Hofstetter

Prices: EUR 62 / 50 / 40 / 30 / 18

* The following family offer applies to the matinée on 12 July:two children’s tickets (€5 each)can be purchased in addition to each regular ticket. Recommended for children aged eight or older.

The affable jesters of world literature, summoned by Michael Hofstetter and the styriarte Festival Orchestra. The sounds whirr and buzz through the Helmut List Halle when Puck and Bottom, Eulenspiegel, Dogberry and Verges are up to mischief. Watch out! A little monster from Vienna is here as well! HK Gruber interprets the chansonnier himself in his international hit “Frankenstein!!”.

Saturday, July 11 – Aula der Alten Universität, 8pm

Karneval in Venedig

Vivaldi: Concerti grossi and Solo concertos for strings

(Sinfonia in D major, RV 125, Double concerto in C major, RV 508 a. o.)

Harmonie Universelle

Direction: Florian Deuter, violin

Prices: EUR 46 / 34 / 18

Back before the “Carnevale di Venezia”became a costume spectacle for tourists and was still a volcanic eruption of the joy of life, a small, red-haired priest mixed with the carnival revellers: Don Antonio Vivaldi. Many of his string concertos resonate the unrestrained joie de vivre of the carnival. Florian Deuter and the baroque string players of Harmonie Universelle give a magnificent impression of thismasquerade– even without the masks.

Saturday, July 11 – Pfarrkirche Stainz, 8.30pm

Sunday, July 12 – Pfarrkirche Stainz, 8.30pm

In tempore belli

Haydn: Symphony no. 97 in C major, Hob. I: 97

Missa in tempore belli in C major, Hob. XXII: 9, “Kettledrum Mass”

Sylvia Schwartz, soprano

Elisabeth von Magnus, mezzo soprano

Daniel Johannsen, tenor

Ruben Drole, bass

Arnold Schoenberg Chor

Concentus Musicus Wien

Conductor: Nikolaus Harnoncourt

Prices: EUR 150 / 120 / 90 / 60 / 25

Twenty years ago in Stainz, Nikolaus Harnoncourt started his unforgotten cycle of Joseph Haydn’s late masses. At the age of 85, he once again returns to the “Kettledrum Mass”, the “Missa in tempore belli”, in which Haydn made abundantly clear how much hisfellow countrymenfeared the French revolutionary troops. Symphony No. 97 is more than just a magnificent overture tothis. The war between France and Austria had long been looming on the horizon when Haydn swept away the London audience in the swirl of this symphony in C major in 1792 – a dance on the volcano.