Music this Summer in the Alps

Some of the very tools of a musician’s trade come from the Alps. Violin-makers who trace their skills to the 17th century workshop of Antonio Stradivari still work in Cremona, south of Milan, and as far north as Mittenwald, in the Bavarian Alps. International soloists and entire orchestras pack their instruments each summer to attend festivals with decades of tradition. They know audiences here are accustomed to high standards even from the local chamber choir.

Ambras Palace Concerts > Austria > July 13-August 10, 2004
Masterworks of the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries adorn the Renaissance Spanish Hall of the Habsburg dynasty’s palace. You can take the place of royalty at this favorite venue of the Innsbruck Festival Weeks.

Arena Summer Festival > Italy > June 19-August 31, 2004
In the city where Shakespeare set Romeo and Juliet, opera fans can go back even further in time at a 2,000-year-old arena. Where gladiators once battled to the roar of Verona’s citizens, the tens of thousands in the audience today hold their applause to the end.

Castle Concerts at Neuschwanstein Castle > Germany > September 18-26, 2004
The fairytale castle of King Ludwig II has become a symbol of Germany. Within its minstrels hall you can hear Purcell’s King Arthur, or works by Wagner, Ludwig’s favorite composer.
Musical Weeks of Stresa and Lake Maggiore> Italy > August 6-11 and August 20-September 11, 2004

A monastery that hugs a cliff above Lake Maggiore is the peaceful setting for Bach’s cello solos, part of the Musical Meditation portion of this festival in its 43rd year. Other performances take place on islands owned by the Borromeo family since the 12th century.

Open-Air Concerts on Herren Island > Germany > June 9- September 18, 2004
Schloss Herrenchiemsee, the stunning castle King Ludwig II modeled after Versailles, is the backdrop for diverse performances on Lake Chiemsee.

Open-Air Paléo > Switzerland > July 20-25, 2004
Outside the historic town of Nyon on Lake Geneva is one of Europe’s largest and best-run open-air music festivals. Rock and worldmusic fans can come for international star acts. A Latin theme pulses in 2004.

Street Parade > Switzerland > August 7, 2004
Zürich, the lakeside city of international bankers, has a few surprises up its ironed shirtsleeve. A hip young crowd parades to techno, house, and electronic beats at this event that drew 900,000 in 2003.

Vienna Festival 2004 > Austria > May 7-June 20, 2004
New commissions, the Vienna Philharmonic, and celebrity conductors are part of this international festival that in 2004 challenges audiences with the “protagonists of the myth of modernity.” The music-theater work Berenice, based on motifs of Edgar Allan Poe, is presented within days of its world premiere in Munich.

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