Early Music in Utrecht Tour
The Burgundian Life
Saturday, August 25 - Monday, September 3, 2018
Join fellow early music enthusiasts in a tour to the Utrecht Early Music Festival, the largest of its kind in the world!
Beginning in Amsterdam, the tour includes a canal cruise, performances on historic organs in Amsterdam and Haarlem, and a tour of a harpsichord workshop, and continues on to Utrecht for the festival - The Burgundian Life - with over 200 concerts given by some of the most prominent early music soloists and ensembles in the world. Optional day tours to Delft, Het Loo, and a windmill tour make this tour a must for the true early music lover.
For tour details and reservations, visit the website at:
with host Donald Livingston
Early Music has become a major part of the classical music scene in the last thirty or forty years. Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque ensembles have sprung up all over Europe and North America, and even standard orchestras and chamber groups have been influenced by the movement to use period instruments and historically-informed interpretations. What used to be a nascent, fringe element in the classical world has now become part of the standard fair of concert halls and opera houses.
In the United States, early music is dominated by two large, biannual festivals on either coast: Boston in odd years, Berkeley in the even. While these are comprehensive festivals with world-class performances, they are certainly not the only ones, and Europe has a number of them. When the idea of creating an audience festival tour, I did a bit of research into the various festivals in France, Spain, Italy, Germany, and the Netherlands. It was difficult to come to a decision about what festival would be the most appealing to the broadest American audience, and I settled on the grand-daddy of them all, the Festival Oude Muziek Utrecht, in the Netherlands.
Premiering in 1982, the ten-day Utrecht Early Music Festival has been the flagship of early music in Europe, with over two-hundred concerts and related activities in the center of Utrecht, with such artists as Benjamin Allard, Hesperion XXI, the Tallis Scholars and the Academy of Ancient Music. Additionally, a special series of over sixty free fringe concerts, as well as various workshops and masterclasses open up the festival to young talent from all over the globe. And for those on this tour, special events are planned. Beginning in Amsterdam, the tour includes a canal cruise, performances on historic organs in Amsterdam and Haarlem, and a tour of the Klinkhamer harpsichord workshop, and optional day tours to Delft, Het Loo, and a windmill tour.
Besides the scope and quality of the performances at the Utrecht Festival, the city itself is one of the reasons I chose Utrecht for the first tour. A medieval city small enough to explore on foot,
Utrecht boasts beautiful canals with extraordinary wharf cellars housing cafés and terraces by the water. As well as the Dom tower, hundreds of other monuments each contribute to the special atmosphere in this centuries-old university town.
I hope you will consider taking this first-ever tour to one of the great early music festivals of Europe.