It’s my pleasure to invite you to the 2023 Bath Mozartfest, our 33rd. Once again we are bringing some of the world’s finest musicians to the beautiful and hospitable City of Bath in a wide reaching celebration of W A Mozart.
Cuarteto Casals, from Barcelona, will open the festival with Mozart’s work nicknamed ‘Spring’, the first of his set of six string quartets dedicated to Joseph Haydn. Other acclaimed ensembles featuring this year include the Sitkovetsky Trio, the Jerusalem Quartet, and the Nash Ensemble, which needs no introduction to Bath audiences.
Our one-hour lunchtime concerts always prove popular and this year we have a plethora of younger generation talent including the Doric Quartet, the clarinet and piano duo, Jonathan Leibovitz and Jonathan Ware, the viola and piano combination of Timothy Ridout and Jonathan Ware, and the piano duo Simon Crawford-Phillips and Philip Moore, whose attractive programme includes excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s sublime Nutcracker Suite.
Our full-length Saturday morning ‘coffee concerts’ are eagerly anticipated and this year Cuarteto Casals will be giving their second performance, and the following week we welcome the multi-award-winning pianist Eric Lu.
Another concert with undoubted audience appeal will be the combination of pianist Dame Imogen Cooper and cellist Adrian Brendel, playing works by Beethoven, Debussy and Liszt.
La Nuova Musica, the celebrated period instrument ensemble conducted by their director David Bates, with the brilliant soprano Lucy Crowe, present a programme featuring Mozart concert arias.
Soprano Elizabeth Watts, with pianist Siobhain O’Higgins, will give a song recital including Mozart’s famous operatic arias. And we will take a brief detour to the Renaissance period with Stile Antico’s concert which explores divine early music written to honour the Virgin Mary.
Our final concert this year will see the Mozartfest bid a fond Bath farewell to Sir Mark Elder with The Hallé as he prepares to step down as the orchestra’s Music Director after nearly a quarter of a century. Their most appealing programme includes Ravel’s Mother Goose, and Brahms powerful Symphony No 4 guarantees a fitting and fabulous finale.
I’d like to sign off with a personal ‘thank you’ to everyone who supports Bath Mozartfest: sponsors and audiences. As a small privately funded festival we need and value each and every one of you. I look forward to seeing you in November for another fine musical celebration.
Amelia Freedman CBE, FRAM