As the festival reminds us each time, Enescu’s spirit endures through his music and the younger generation of musicians he inspired. Yehudi Menuhin (a former student and friend) poignantly described Enescu as “the most extraordinary human being, the greatest musician and the most powerful influence ever exercised upon me.”
Although it will take more than magic to transform Romania beyond the month of September, the 21st George Enescu Festival will no doubt enhance our appreciation of Enescu’s music.
This year’s festival inauguration concert features two of the greatest musicians of our time – conductor Daniel Barenboim and Romanian pianist Radu Lupu, whose international career is at its peak. “Never could music come nearer to speech,” wrote journalist Joan Chissell in The Times about his London stage debut in 1969, where he performed Beethoven’s no. 3 Op. 10 piano sonatas. The program includes Enescu’s Romanian Rhapsody no. 2 and Beethoven’s Concerto no. 4 piano for piano and orchestra. Lupu will also perform a piano recital on Wednesday at the Athenaeum.
The festival will feature twenty-six Enescu compositions, including five unusual works (program details at http://festivalenescu.ro/calendar/events).
Romanian Atheneum, 17.30
Conductor : JAMES GAFFIGAN
Soloist : FAZIL SAY – piano
G. Enescu – Symphonic poem “Isis” (arrangement by Pascal Bentoiu – based on the composer’s notes)
With the participation of “PRELUDIU” Chamber Choir of The National Art Centre “Romanian Youth”
Conductor of the choir : VOICU ENĂCHESCU
W.A. Mozart – Concerto no. 21 for piano and orchestra in C Major K 467
J. Haydn – Symphony no. 104 in D Major H.1/104 “London”