International Festival of Music
Bragança continues to host events of high artistic and cultural value, confirming the process of affirmation of the city and county on the national and international cultural scene. An example of this is the International Classical Music Festival, BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST, which is now in its third edition and will run from September 29 to October 7.
This is a well-established event that attracts audiences of all ages, and which, edition after edition, has sold out not only the auditorium of the Teatro Municipal de Bragança, but also iconic venues in Bragança, such as the Sé Velha, the Church of Santa Maria do Castelo and the Church of São Francisco, which also host shows of unparalleled musical quality, in an effective strategy of cultural decentralization.
It is through the participation of artists of great value, recognized by their peers and their audiences, that the Municipality of Bragança has been promoting the dissemination of and access to different artistic languages, where music occupies a relevant space, raising the reflective spirit and contributing to the construction of a critical and dynamic community, on a par with other cities in our country.
I would like to express my thanks to all the partners and the public who, year after year, have made BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST an event that marks the cultural program of the territory, the region and the country.
Mayor of Bragança
Maintaining the High Patronage of His Excellency the President of the Portuguese Republic, BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST - International Music Festival consolidates itself as a cultural event of reference on a national and international scale. After two editions with all of its shows sold out, with around 4,000 spectators, the 3rd edition of BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST maintains high standards of excellence and artistic quality, enhancing the cultural and social life of the city, the municipality, the region and the country.
In a series of seven concerts, hosted in emblematic venues in the city of Bragança, world-renowned musicians celebrate an eclectic program, for unique experiences in the field of classical music. As well as more intimate performances in the churches of Sé, Santa Maria and São Francisco, the highlights include unmissable works from the symphonic repertoire – Ludwig van Beethoven's "Symphony No. 5 Opus 67" and Antonín Dvořák's "Symphony No. 9 Opus 95 From the New World" – in the Asturias Symphony Orchestra’s debut in Bragança, conducted by Maestro Nuno Coelho.
In addition, meetings, masterclasses and open rehearsals bring renowned international artists together with musicians and students from the city and the region, for remarkable moments of sharing and learning.
For its excellence and effective cultural decentralization, the Municipal Theater of Bragança would like to thank all the partners involved, as well as the audience that brings BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST to life..
Director of the Municipal Theater of Bragança
The 3rd edition of BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST International Music Festival presents a program of artistic excellence, consolidating the path followed in the 2021 and 2022 editions, which brought to the city of Bragança the brilliance of renowned orchestras and musicians - such as the Vienna and St. Petersburg Chamber Orchestras, Gérard Caussé, Diana Tischenko, Héctor del Curto, Mario Hossen, Lena Belkina, Marcelo Nisinman, among others - for memorable concerts sold out by an enthusiastic audience.
In 2023, Bragança will once again become the epicenter of classical music in Portugal for about two weeks, as usual around World Music Day, October 1, with an exciting program and the presence of national and international reference musicians.
Of particular note are the opening concerts of BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST with one of Spain's leading orchestras, the Asturias Symphony Orchestra (OSPA). Under the direction of its Principal Conductor since 2022, portuguese Nuno Coelho, OSPA presents two concerts in the magnificent hall of the Teatro Municipal de Bragança, with masterpieces of musical heritage: Beethoven's 5th Symphony and Dvořák's 9th Symphony, "From the New World".
Also noteworthy is the presence at this edition of BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST of two renowned musicians, especially in the world of wind instruments: the famous French clarinetist Pascal Moraguès, 1st Soloist of the Orchestra of Paris, who has been among the world's elite for four decades, and the Portuguese flutist Adriana Ferreira, 1st Soloist of the National Orchestra of Santa Cecilia in Rome and a prize-winner at the main international competitions.
Another highlight of the 3rd BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST is the Portuguese debut of soprano Julia Muzychenko, a star on the rise on the world opera scene and a laureate of major international singing competitions such as the Clermont Ferrand Opera Competition (1st Prize), the Montserrat Caballé Competition (2nd Prize) and Belgium's Queen Elisabeth Competition (3rd Prize). In 2023, BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST will also continue to be the stage for young and talented Portuguese musicians at the start of their careers, some of whom live in other countries and thus return and maintain their connection to Portugal.
The musical repertoire of this 3rd edition spans four centuries, from the Baroque music of Johann Sebastian Bach to the 21st century music of Argentine composer Osvaldo Golijov, including the great composers of classicism and musical romanticism and 20th century music, namely Spanish music by Joaquín Turina and Portuguese music by Fernando Lopes-Graça.
The Closing Concert of the 3rd BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST is an excellent example of the stylistic and international variety of this edition's repertoire, culminating in the famous and festive "The Carnival of the Animals, Great Zoological Fantasy", a work full of humor composed by the French composer Camille Saint-Saëns in 1886 and which, on this special occasion, will feature Jorge Vaz de Carvalho's narration of humorous texts written by António Mega Ferreira.
Alongside the concerts, the 3rd BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST continues its important educational and cultural awareness axis, inaugurated in the 2022 edition, with the holding of masterclasses and meetings, with the participation of the artists present at the festival and especially aimed at musicians and students from the city and the region.
An important feature of BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST, since its first edition, has been the holding of concerts in venues with rich heritage, as in 2023 in the churches of São Francisco, Sé Velha and Santa Maria, in a healthy crossover between music and the historical, cultural and architectural heritage of Bragança.
The purpose of this 3rd edition of BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST is to consolidate the festival as a cultural event of excellence on a national and international scale, contributing to the dynamism and prosperity of the region and promoting universal access to culture and the celebration of community life through the extraordinary universal language of music.
My best wishes to everyone who makes the BRAGANÇA CLASSICFEST International Music Festival possible, starting with the fundamental support of Câmara Municipal de Bragança, Teatro Municipal de Bragança and DSCH Associação Musical, the promoters and organizers of this praiseworthy initiative, and the festival's main patron, BPI/Fundação "la Caixa". I would also like to thank Direcção-Geral das Artes, Diocese de Miranda-Bragança, media partner RTP Antena 2 and, especially, His Excellency the President of the Republic, for the High Patronage once again granted.