This weekend at Enescu Festival

Oana Vasiliu 08/09/2017 | 09:40

Each September brings the magic of national composer George Enescu to Bucharest, this time with the festival itself. The spirit of George Enescu is celebrated through his works and the younger generations of performers he inspired, enlivening Bucharest with the beauty of his magnificent music.


Read also: Analysis: Enescu Festival brings music magic back to Bucharest

This weekend’s program at the festival is as follows:


Friday, September 8

L’ARPEGGIATA ENSEMBLE under the wand of Christina Pluhar, from 16.30 at the Romanian Athenaeum.

Soloists: PHILIPPE JAROUSSKY (countertenor) CÉLINE SCHEEN (soprano) GIANLUIGI TROVESI (clarinet) CHRISTINA PLUHAR (theorbo & conductor)


“Händel goes wild” – Improvisations on G.F. Händel’s music

Händel – Sinfonia (Arrival of the Queen of Sheba, from “Solomon”), “Penna tiranna” (Aria di Dardano, from “Amadigi di Gaula”), “Where’er you walk” (Aria di Jupiter, from “Semele”)

Vivaldi – Concerto in g minor RV 157

Händel – “Tu del ciel ministro eletto” (Aria di Belezza, from “Il triomfo del Tempo e della Verita”), “Verdi prati” (Aria di Ruggiero, from “Alcina”), “Io t’abbraccio” (Duetto di Rodelinda e Bertarido, from “Rodelinda”) , Sinfonia (From “Alcina”, Atto Terzo) “O sleep, why thost thou leave me” (Aria di Semele, from “Semele”) “Cara sposa” (Aria di Rinaldo, From “Rinaldo”) “Caro/cara, tu mi accendi nel mio core” (Duetto di Clotilde e Aldolfo, from “Faramondo”)

Improvisation – Canario

Händel – “Mi lusinga il dolce affetto” (Aria di Ruggiero, from “Alcina”) “Piangero la sorte mia” (Aria di Cleopatra, from “Giulio Cesare”) “Venti turbidi” (Aria di Rinaldo, from “Rinaldo”)


Later this evening, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra under the wand of Manfred Honeck from 19.30 at Sala Palatului, together with the violinist Anne Sophie Mutter.


Programme: Enescu – Concert Overture on Popular Romanian Themes in A major op. 32 (1948)

“Between the two sound phrases that mark the beginning and the end of George Enescu’s Concert Overture op. 32, […] a strange, complex and equally paradoxical sonorous world is born, transformed and placed on the road to eternity.” (Constantin Secară, in the study “George Enescu’s Concert Overture op. 32, from the Romanian Traditional Character to the Synthesis of Enescu’s Musical Language”)

Dvořák – Concerto for violin and orchestra in a minor op. 53

Mahler – Symphony no. 1 in D major

Saturday, September 9

The Enescu Festival starts from 11.00, at the Auditorium Hall, presenting for the public ARC Ensamble, staging:

Elgar – Piano Quintet in a minor op. 84

Fitelberg – Quartet no. 2 (1931)

Enescu – Piano Quartet no. 1 in D major op. 16 (1909)

“The Piano Quartet op. 16 is one of the strangest works and perhaps one of the most unjustly treated in Enescu’s creation. I say strange because […] this piece looks to the past with one eye and to the future with the other.” (Pascal Bentoiu, Breviar enescian)


The Romanian Athenaeum expects its festival-goers from 16.30 to their meeting with Orchestre de Chambre de Luasanne, which will perform under the wand of Joshua Weilerstein, having Romanian pianist Mihai Ritivoiu as soloist and trumpet player Tine Thing Helseth.


Biber – “Battalia à 10” in D major C61 (1673)

Shostakovich – Concerto no. 1 for piano, trumpet and orchestra in c minor op. 35 (1933)

Beethoven – Symphony no. 3 in E-flat major op. 55 “Eroica” (1804)


Munchner Philharmoniker under the wand of Valery Gergiev from 19.30 at Sala Palatului, together with the pianist Daniil Trifonov, will be staged in the festival.


Rachmaninoff – Concerto no. 2 for piano and orchestra in c minor op. 18

Bruckner – Symphony no. 4 in E-flat major “Romantic” (WAB 104)


Sunday, September 10

As previous day, the Enescu Festival starts at 11.00, at the Auditorum Hall, with QUATUOR DIOTIMA presenting works commissioned by Mrs. Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge, Schoenberg, Enescu’s String Quartet no. 2 in G major op. 22 and Bartók.

In the afternoon, the Romanian Athenaeum will host again Orchestre de Chambre de Luasanne.


Enescu – Chamber Symphony for 12 solo instruments op. 33 (1954)

In 1958, at the first edition of the “George Enescu” Festival, the conductor Constantin Silvestri told the audience the following: “This work is the masterpiece of maestro Enescu; it is more difficult to comprehend than others due to its overly modern language. This is why we will perform it fully once again. (Quoted by Pascal Bentoiu, in Capodopere enesciene)

Prokofiev – Concerto no. 2 for violin and orchestra in g minor op. 63

Mozart – Symphony no. 40 in g minor K 550

Later on, Munchner Philharmoniker under the wand of Valery Gergiev from 19.30 at Sala Palatului, together with the Romanian cellist Andrei Ionita, winner of the Tchaikovsky International Cello Competition in 2015, will enchant the audience.


Enescu – Symphony no. 1 in E-flat major op. 13 (1905)

“The Symphony in E-flat major is a huge shout of joy, not being in the least a childish work. […] It is a continuous aspiration to an ideal of beauty, light and truth, almost a sort of metaphysical patience.” (Pascal Bentoiu, Capodopere enesciene)

Saint-Saëns – Concerto no. 1 for cello and orchestra in a minor op. 33

Rimsky-Korsakov – Symphonic Suite “Scheherazade” op. 35

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