The sound of Leipzig as a city of music in a chamber music festival

Con spirito 11-19.09.2021
Daniel Hope, Antje Weithaas, Martin Helmchen and others give concerts in Leipzig's composers' houses

Leipzig's vibrant musical tradition will come together from 11 to 19 September 2021 in a new international chamber music festival: Con spirito. It is the European cultural heritage sites, the salons and places of work of Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Johann Sebastian Bach, Edvard Grieg, Richard Wagner as well as Clara and Robert Schumann, which characterise the spirit of the Saxon cultural metropolis: "Music lives here"! There will be concerts there with different instrumentations: Daniel Hope, Antje Weithaas, Martin Helmchen, Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, Alexander Melnikov, Eckart Runge and many other artists. Artistic director Peter Bruns conceived a thematically appropriate Musikstadt programme for each venue.

Con spirito starts its first season with works by two Gewandhauskapellmeisters on 11 September, 6 pm, in the Gewandhaus: Niels Wilhelm Gade's rarely heard String Octet op. 17 and Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy's Piano Quartet No. 2 op. 2. Robert Schumann's Piano Quintet op. 44, which his wife Clara premiered in the Gewandhaus, completes the programme for the festival opening. Performers include Antje Weithaas, Stephen Waarts, Martin Helmchen, Alexander Melnikov and the Gewandhaus musicians Julius Bekesch and Valentino Worlitzsch. (The official advance sale for the opening concert begins tomorrow, 1 September). Daniel Hope will give the only solo evening as part of Con spirito on 15 September, 8 pm, in Leipzig's Thomaskirche.

For one week, Con spirito enables a concert walk through the music city of Leipzig, interlinking valuable historical heritage and today's cultural life. "Especially in these times, this idea of connecting institutions seems to us to be a hopeful approach for the future cultural diversity of the city," says organiser Gregor Nowak.
On 11 September, the Leipziger Notenspur Verein will be hosting a family festival in the Nikolaikirchhof courtyard from 11 a.m. onwards to get people in the mood for Con spirito, and from 3 p.m. onwards, it will be inviting people to attend concerts in the arcades of the city centre. All details: www.conspiritoleipzig.de/veranstaltung/notenspurtag

The finale of the annual chamber music series will be Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy's Octet on 19 September at the Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Academy of Music and Theatre. The matinee is also the opening of the European Chamber Music Academy Leipzig (EKAL) and will feature ensembles from both festivals.

Leipzig's music heritage sites comprise nine outstanding institutions of music history and the present: the Bach Archive, the Mendelssohn House, the Leipzig Gewandhaus, the Schumann House, the Old Nikolai School, the Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Academy of Music and Theatre, the C. F. Peters music publishing house with Grieg meeting place, and St Thomas' and St Nicholas' Churches. They are connected by the Leipziger Notenspur and the chamber music festival Con spirito.

Con spirito's partners and sponsors include: the City of Leipzig, the Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony, the European Foundation of the Rahn Dittrich Group for Education and Culture, Aengevelt Immobilien, Sparkasse Leipzig, Julius Blüthner Pianofortefabrik, Blumenland Engler, Kocmoc and Ahoy Leipzig.


Con spirito - The Leipzig Chamber Music Festival in the European Heritage Sites

TRAILER: youtu.be/iucbxrKMi94

Julius Bekesch, Elisabeth Dingstad, Daniel Hope, Emilija Kortus, Sayako Kusaka, Stephen Waarts, Antje Weithaas / violin
Anna Garzuly / flute
Tomoko Akasaka, Pauline Sachse / viola
Peter Bruns, Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, Eckart Runge, Valentino Worlitzsch / violoncello
Benedikt Hübner / double bass
Jacques Ammon, Caspar Frantz, Martin Helmchen, Annegret Kuttner, Alexander Melnikov / piano


Gewandhaus | Saturday, 11 September, 6 pm
Opening concert (BEGINNING VVK: 1 September!)
Niels Wilhelm Gade: String Octet op. 17, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: Piano Quartet No. 2 op. 2, Robert Schumann: Piano Quintet in E flat major op. 44

Schumann House | Sunday, 12 September, 7 pm
Robert Schumann: Piano Quartet in E flat major op. 47 as well as works by Johannes Brahms, Franz Schubert, Ludwig Schuncke

Alte Nikolaischule | Tuesday, 14 September, 8 pm
Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: Piano Trio in D minor op. 49 and others as well as works by Richard Wagner, Alban Förster

Thomaskirche | Wednesday, 15 September, 8 pm
Daniel Hope: "Bach and Environment"
Works by Johann Sebastian Bach, Johann Paul von Westhoff, Erwin Schulhoff, Heinrich Ignaz Franz Biber, Krzysztof Penderecki, Alfred Schnittke, George Rochberg

Bach Museum | Thursday, 16 September, 8 pm (SOLD OUT)
Franz Schubert: String Quintet in C major op. post. 163, D 956 as well as works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven

Grieg Meeting Place | Friday, 17 September, 8 p.m.
"Grieg and his Leipzig teachers"
Edvard Grieg: "Peer Gynt Suite" op. 46 (arr. for piano trio) and others as well as works by Carl Reinecke, Ignaz Moscheles

Mendelssohn House | Saturday, 18 September, 7 pm
Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: Sextet in D major op. 110 (1824) and others as well as works by Robert Volkmann, Carl Maria von Weber

"Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy" Academy of Music and Theatre
Sunday, 19 September, 11 a.m.
Final concert in cooperation with the European Chamber Music Academy Leipzig
Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: Octet

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