Herrenchiemsee Festival 14 to 27 July 2015 | Programme presentation (November 2014)
In 2015, the Herrenchiemsee Festival will use Schumann’s title “Of Foreign Lands and People” as their motto to present music from all over the world:
The opening concert on 14 July, with four Bach cantatas, will highlight the journey of the Three Wise Kings from Saba to Bethlehem. On 15 July, an extraordinary programme will combine Venetian and Turkish music about the Battle of Lepanto. The festival will feature Smetana‘s ode to his Czech “Vaterland” (homeland), as well as Purcell’s British “King Arthur” and Puccini’s emigration opera “Manon Lescaut”. This world tour of music would not be complete without the “Scottish Symphony” by Felix Mendelssohn, as well as music by the Russian masters Mussorgsky and Tchaikovsky. And finally, the highly acclaimed 2012 performance of Robert Schumann’s secular-exotic oratorio “Paradise and the Peri” will once again be included in the programme.
As for the architectural dreams of King Ludwig II of Bavaria, it seemed more like travelling back in time to the romantically transfigured Middle Ages or Versailles designed by King Louis XIV. Nevertheless, it did not take the monarch long to conceive construction projects for illusionist representations of faraway worlds. For instance, he planned to build a byzantine and, at a later stage, even a Chinese palace in the middle of the Bavarian Graswang valley. And when his architectural fantasies began to fail in the face of financial reality, he seriously considered transferring his main residence to Tenerife or to one of the other Canary Islands. His bold utopias have once again pre-empted modern tourist dreams.