Artistic director Daniel Rowland was inspired for this edition by the current and urgent theme of the indispensability of our earth. With the theme Song of the Earth, he presents this festival with exciting programs that each celebrate the beauty and strength, but also the fragility of the planet Earth.
The song of the earth
Around 40 musicians from the Netherlands and abroad perform on various stages in Twente together with violinist Daniel Rowland, including mezzo-soprano Barbara Kozelj, pianists Nino Gvetadze and Anna Fedorova and cellist Maja Bogdanovic.
From bicycle concert to family performance, from the song of the whale in Oude Blasius and the Beethoven matinee to Unbound: They all shed light on how nature inspired musicians throughout the ages, but also how composers used their music to make political-social statements.
During the festival, the world premiere of the Stift commissioned composition Blue in blue in blue by Maxim Shalygin will be played on 21 August. Several (world) premieres are planned: A new work by Joël Waterman and the work Te Amo by Alissa Firsova will be performed on 22 August.
Composer Pēteris Vasks will be present on August 23 when his Sonata Estiva, dedicated to Daniel Rowland, has its world premiere in the old Plechelmus Basilica in Oldenzaal. His sixth string quartet will have its Dutch premiere later that evening.
Greener than ever
The venues are already linked to the beautiful nature of Twente in all festival editions, but this year, due to the theme ‘Song of the Earth’, there are new exciting concert venues. There is a guided walk (and music!) at the Egheria/De Tankenberg estate; in the darkest place in the Netherlands, on the darkest night of the month, there is a concert in the Cosmos Observatory, in the garden at Hooge Boekel and Castle Twickel, the music can be heard in surprising places.
A bicycle concert from the warm green heart of the festival: ‘t Stift in Weerselo. Seven concerts are played in the old Stiftskerk during the week, and as always the final concert is outside at ‘t Stift itself.
Pencil music forest
10 percent of all donations to the Stiftfestivalen go to Alive to Earth, founded by a social entrepreneur from Twente.
Alive to Earth plants a Stift Muziekbos in protected reserves in Tanzania. There, this philanthropic organization helps restore biodiversity, provide local people with food, income and nature education and, of course, combat climate change.
More about this at stiftmusicfestival.nl/alivetoearth.
For more information on Alive to Earth activities, visit www.alivetoearth.org
Collaboration with Musikcenter Enschede
For two days, large productions as well as small gems take place in Enschede, in collaboration with Muziekcentrum Enschede/Wilmink Theater. You can hear the emotional violin concerto Distant Light, as an indictment of the war by Pēteris Vasks, and the crushing black angels, 13 pictures from the dark country by George Crumb, who died this year. Consensus Vocalis conducted by Béni Csillag will be there for the performance of Mozart’s Requiem.
A day later, Mahler Musikcenter’s Store Sal plays Das Lied von der Erde with vocal soloists Barbara Kozelj and Fabio Trümpy.
On Saturday morning there is a nursery concert for babies and toddlers, and in De Kleine Willem listeners enjoy a ‘Stift Unbound’ leisure concert on Friday evening with a drink in hand.
Most tickets are for sale via www.stiftmusicfestival.nl; the tickets for concerts in Muiziekcentrum Enschede are available via Wilminktheater’s website. If you order tickets for 2 or more concerts, you get a 5 percent discount and from 4 concerts there is even a stack discount of 10 percent.