Saturday, 13 August 2022

Poetry‘s on song at autumn festival

DETAILS of the 14th Oxford Lieder — the theme of which is Singing Words: Poets and

DETAILS of the 14th Oxford Lieder — the theme of which is Singing Words: Poets and their Songs — have been announced.

Running from October 16 to 31, the festival will once again bring a glittering array of musicians to Oxford for what the organisers have billed as a diverse and enticing programme.

This year‘s festival will focus on poets and the words that shape songs, with many programmes devoted to specific poets and a series of related cultural events.

The opening recital will be given by superstar duo Sarah Connolly and Graham Johnson, who perform Schubert, Brahms and Wolf on Friday, October 16.

The following day Sophie Kartäuser and Eugene Asti will explore Mörike and éluard via the music of Wolf, Schumann and Poulenc.

On Sunday, October 18, former BBC Cardiff Singer of the World winner Katarina Karnéus and Stephan Loges join festival director Sholto Kynoch for an evening devoted to settings of Goethe.

Other recital highlights include performances given by Elizabeth Watts and Julius Drake (Tuesday, October 20), Matthew Rose (Friday, October 30) and Christoph Prégardien and Roger Vignoles (Saturday, October 31).

Anna Stéphany and Sholto Kynoch perform a major new song cycle commissioned by Oxford Lieder from Rhian Samuel (Wednesday, October 28), and John Mark Ainsley and Catherine Hopper perform a programme of Shakespeare in Music (Wednesday, October 21).

The festival will also feature an event devoted to Mary Stuart, with music by Schumann and new works by Judith Bingham, Eddie McGuire and Dee Isaacs.

Imogen Cooper will be the artist in residence, giving recitals with Wolfgang Holzmair and Henk Neven, as well as a solo performance and masterclasses.

A lunchtime recital series will feature the complete songs of Gabriel Fauré (paired with Schubert songs), with artists including Lucy Crowe (Tuesday, October 27) and James Gilchrist (Tuesday, October 20).

This series will be launched at a lecture-recital weekend with Graham Johnson (October 17 and 18), whose series Schubert‘s Life and Times was a festival highlight for many in 2014.

There will be a study day on the life and songs of Hector Berlioz (Saturday, October 24), with speakers to include David Cairns, the author of the definitive Berlioz biography.

Chamber, instrumental and choral works, with artists including the Doric String Quartet (Tuesday, October 20, and Monday, October 26), the Phoenix Piano Trio (Thursday, October 22) and Tom Poster (Friday, October 23), will be heard throughout the festival, in addition to a wide range of talks, readings, and other events.

Masterclasses will be given by artists including Robert Holl, Ann Murray and Roger Vignoles.

The Oxford Lieder continues to develop its well-established programme of projects in local schools, and the 2016 event will offer opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to participate in the festival.

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