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Ravenna Festival 2021
Dedicated to Dante - XXII Edition Over 70 events and 1200 artists involved
The 32nd Ravenna Festival could only be “Dedicated to Dante”, on the 700th anniversary of the death of the great poet and in the city that holds his remains.

Over two months, from 2 June to 31 July (and with the end of the Autumn Trilogy), over 70 events will be proposed, with the participation of 1200 artists, located in the most evocative monumental spaces of Ravenna, in Cervia, Russi and Lugo. The Festival also confirms the choice of affordable prices and streaming content.

The program, vast and interdisciplinary as per the tradition of the Festival, in the dedication to Dante finds the fil rouge that, with direct or indirect references, runs through the entire program. The proposed events, as the presentation of the current edition states, "are planets and satellites that revolve around the central sun of the Poet and his masterpiece but also follow other and more eccentric orbits."

After the preview on May 9th with Riccardo Muti driving the Wiener Philharmoniker, the review opens with two premieres: on June 2, Republic Day, in S. Vitale with the chamber opera as an absolute premiere Theodora by Mauro Montalbetti, libretto and dramaturgy by Barbara Roganti; a path in the labyrinth of the existence of the empress portrayed in mosaic in the Basilica.

June 4th Alessandra Ferri celebrates forty years of career at the Festival in the role of Winnie, the "âgée" dancer imagined by Béjart in 1998 for Carla Fracci: the revival of the Beckettian L'heure exquise, in co-production with the Royal Ballet, will see her submerged by a mountain of old pointe shoes. At his side Carsten Jung in the role that was of Micha van Hoecke, who will guide them in the rearrangement together with Maina Gielgud who was the second interpreter.

In Dante's triptych of new commissions, which starts from I.hell of John Sollima and reaches the Paradise of Valentin Silvestrov, fits Purgatory of Tigran Mansurian, for which Riccardo Muti will walk with his Cherubini Orchestra 'The roads of Friendship' up to Yerevan.

Muti in fact he will guide his Cherubini in the annual musical pilgrimage of the Ways of Friendship, which returns to Yerevan to reconnect the dialogue intertwined twenty years ago and which has roots in Roman and Byzantine history, when Ravenna boasted a thriving Armenian community. "The land of screaming stones", as Mandelstam described it, finds expression of his own painful spirituality and musical tradition, as well as in the concert of the Naghash Ensemble and an Armenian mass, in the commission to the most important composer of that border land, Tigran Mansurian. Instead, it is the Rocca that is transfigured into an infernal citadel for Giovanni Sollima's Six Studies on Dante's Inferno; alongside the composer from Palermo the Cherubini conducted by Kristjan Järvi, the Choir of the Siena Cathedral "Guido Saracini" and the countertenor Raffaele Pe. O luce etterna, with which Valentin Silvestrov gives sonorous form to the luminous evanescence of Paradise, will be performed by the Kiev Chamber Choir in Sant'Apollinare in Classe, shining with mosaics.

The Basilica of S. Francesco, where the Poet's funeral was held, welcomes events dedicated to the music of Dante's time or inspired by his poetry, preceded by a conversation with the musicologist Piero Mioli. Some of the most authoritative Italian ensembles specializing in early music are on the bill - Odhecaton, La Fonte Musica and theEnsemble Micrologus - while the formula of Vespers at S. Vitale is renewed as Dante's Vespers, ranging from troubadour tradition to new compositions, including a sortie in the "poetic bestiary" of the Comedy, told by Tiziano Scarpa.

The vastness of the poem and its ability to compete with the most diverse artistic languages is also evidenced by the projection of the silent masterpiece Hell (1911), soundtracked live by Edison Studio in collaboration with the Cineteca di Bologna; Flavio Caroli will instead focus on 'The paintings that shocked the world after the age of Dante and Giotto'. Another important "first" is the one with Limb Lindsay, a homage to Carmelo Bene's Lectura Dantis which in 1981 commemorated the Bologna massacre from the top of the Torre degli Asinelli.

Other appointments are dedicated to Piazzolla and Stravinskij, among them, in the Symphonic section of the festival, Charles Dutoit and the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, with a program for the 50th anniversary of the composer's death, and the performance dd Roberto De Simone, which by Stravinskij proposes an unexpected reinterpretation: Les noces or Lo 'Ngaudio, performed by the Ars Ludi ensemble directed by Marcello Panni, the vocal blaze is no longer in Russian but in the Gargano dialect.

Also worth mentioning Ottavio Dantone with the Byzantine Academy, Leōnidas Kavakos on the podium of the Cherubini, Beatrice Rana with the touring production Stravinsky's Love (with Massimo Spada, Vladimir Derevianko and international étoiles) and the champion pianist Daniil Trifonov for the only pianorécital on the calendar, with music by Prokof'ev, Debussy and Brahms.

Do not miss the participation of the Swingles, Vinicio Capossela, Elio, Neri Marcorè, while the trilogy "Dance, Music and Word" will take place in the autumn with the shows Metànoia, Faust rhapsody and Paradiso xxxiii.

Other information of interest

Ravenna Festival Box Office (Monday to Saturday 9-13 and 15-19) Alighieri Theater, Via A. Mariani 2, Ravenna - tel. 0544 249244 - email It is possible to purchase a maximum of 2 tickets per show in consideration of the limited usability of the entertainment venues following the rules on social distancing in force.

There is more

The history of the Ravenna Festival

Founded in 1990 by Cristina Mazzavillani Muti, Ravenna Festival has always been characterized by a program that includes all artistic languages, from symphonic to chamber music, from opera to theater, from dance to musicals, from jazz to ethnic music. Every year from May to July an entire city becomes a stage for two months: from the basilicas studded with the gold of ancient mosaics to the elegant historical theaters, cloisters, ancient palaces, industrial archeology, but also the beaches and the pine forest where Dante Alighieri stopped and still up to the gentle hills that stand out in the distance on the horizon ...

Extraordinary places - it is worth remembering that there are 8 monuments in Ravenna recognized by UNESCO - and a multidisciplinary vocation are the distinctive features that make Ravenna Festival unique and contribute to rediscovering a city at the crossroads of peoples and cultures. Each year the artistic direction composes a rich program of events that revolve around a significant theme from a cultural and artistic point of view.

Many themes have been dealt with, crossed over, dissected: from the more distinctly musicological ones of the earliest years (from "Salieri and the Vienna School" in the now distant 1990 to "Around Rossini", "Bellini and Wagner", etc.) to those more visionaries who have projected Ravenna - always object and subject at the same time - in new landscapes of the soul, between Mediterranean, orient, apocalypses, visions, deserts, pilgrimages ... between popular and fairytale, sacred and profane, up to the history of the twentieth century. Over the years the Festival has dealt with pivotal events such as the Great War and the Russian Revolution, and paid homage to icons such as Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King and Dante Alighieri.

Since 1997, the year of the first historic concert in Sarajevo, the steps of the Ravenna Festival are intertwined with those of "The Roads of Friendship", lay pilgrimages that touch wounded cities, reconnect ancient ties with places that have made history, build "bridges of brotherhood ". Leading these travels, ambassador of culture in the world, has always been Riccardo Muti with orchestras and choirs who, in the spirit of brotherhood that animates the project and testifying to the universality of musical language, on every occasion welcome musicians from the city into their ranks. travel destination. Unforgettable appointments in iconic places such as Beirut, Jerusalem, Moscow, Yerevan and Istanbul, New York, Cairo, Damascus, Nairobi, Mirandola, Redipuglia, Otranto, Tokyo, Tehran, Kiev, Athens.

(From the Ravenna Festival official website)

Ravenna Festival 2021

Author: Uber Bertiè

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