On 22 March 2019 the programme for the 33rd Castell de Peralada Festival, organised by the Castell de Peralada Foundation has been announced. The presentation was made in the Hall of Mirrors of the Gran Teatre del Liceu, in the presence of president of the Castell de Peralada Foundation, Isabel Suqué, and the director of the Castell de Peralada Festival, Oriol Aguilà. The launch event presented the poster for this year’s festival, which features 25 shows to be held between 4 July and 17 August with a budget of 4.6 million euros. The event also saw the presentation of the work that Spanish multidisciplinary artist Ouka Leele has created for the occasion.


Dance and lyric conquer Peralada

The Castell de Peralada Festival is a unique and exceptional project. Through private initiative with a public vocation, the Festival contributes to the cultural enrichment of our country through new commissions and new productions, but also programming companies and artists of international renown in our country.

In this way, the opening of the festival will be a great event for dance-lovers. On the evening of 4 July, one of the best, if not the best, classical dance company in the world, the Mariinsky Theatre Ballet from Saint Petersburg, will be raising the curtain with The Four Seasons, with music by Max Richter. The following day, 5 July, the same company will be performing a mixed programme with Chopiniana by Fokine, In the Night by Robbins and Marguerite and Armand by Ashton. On 26 July, Ballet Nacional de Sodre, under the artistic direction of Ygor Yebra, will present El Quijote del Plata, a show with choreography by Blanca Li. International ballet star, Carlos Acosta and his Acosta Danza company, will offer a programme tailor-made for the Castell de Peralada Festival on the evening of 15 August with a new co-production by Sadler’s Wells London and Valid Productions, where Carlos Acosta will dance two choreographies: Mermaid by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Two by Russell Maliphant, which he danced at the festival in 2017.

Lyric and classical play a very important part in this year’s festival. On 18 July, the Carme Cloister will be the venue for a new world première, a commission by the festival, of the opera Diàlegs de Tirant e Carmesina with music by Joan Magrané, libretto and direction by Marc Rosich and stage design by Jaume Plensa. The newly-created opera will feature the voices of Josep-Ramón Olivé, Isabella Gaudí and Anna Alàs Jové. The following day, 19 July, sees the arrival of A Soldier’s Tale by Igor Stravinsky, with stage direction by Àlex Ollé of La Fura dels Baus, a chilling show, narrated in French, that is coming to Spain for the first time. On 20 July, baritone Ludovic Tézier will offer a recital of arias and songs in the Carme Church. On 3 August, the same venue will host Finnish soprano Camilla Nylund accompanied on the piano by Helmut Deutsch in a recital centred on liederabend by Strauss, Dvorak, Mahler and Sibelius; this recital will herald the beginning of a lyric week of the very highest quality. Tenor Joseph Calleja will be making his début at the festival on 4 August, and on the following day the festival will experience one of the high points of the summer: the première of La Traviata (siempre Libera), a new Peralada production directed by and with stage concept by Paco Azorín, which audiences can see on the evenings of 5 and 7 August. The Orchestra of the Gran Teatre del Liceu and the Coro Intermezzo conducted by Riccardo Frizza will feature an international line-up led by soprano Ekaterina Bakanova, tenor René Barbera and baritone Quinn Kelsey in the lead roles. On 8 August, Nuria Rial and Juan Sancho will be presenting Human Love, Love Divine, a concert that will include arias and duets for soprano and tenor from operas and oratorios by Handel, which will be the precursor to a new record with the participation of the Festival. Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Flórez will be offering a lyric concert in the Auditorium on 9 August, alongside soprano Ruzan Mantashyan. A concert of duets and arias by Gounoud, Puccini and Donizzeti with the Orquestra Simfònica del Vallès conducted by Guillermo García Calvo. Conductor Gustavo Dudamel comes to the festival for the first time on the evening of 10 August. With the Mahler Chamber Orchestra & Friends, Dudamel will conduct A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Mendelssohn, with María Valverde as narrator and the voices of Mercedes Gancedo and Lidia Vinyes-Curtis, and Symphony no. 1 in D Major "Titan" by Mahler. On 17 August, American soprano Sondra Radvanovsky will offer a lyric recital in the Carme Church in tribute to the great diva of the festival, Montserrat Caballé.

In the Summer of Music, the festival features international music stars, such as Charlotte Gainsbourg (6 July) with REST; singer and composer Paul Anka (13 July) with Anka Sings Sinatra: His Songs, My songs, My Way!; the Pink Martini band (27 July) with an anniversary concert of their great hit Je ne veux pas travailler; and one of the new divas of pop, Briton Jessie J, who will be performing at the festival on 12 August. Cirque Eloize, one of the best contemporary circus companies, will be bringing its show Hotel on 12 July. For the close and for the first time, Peralada will be electronic and symphonic at the same time with the show MAESTRO, Where Dance Music Becomes Classical.

Last year saw the première of two new stages with the aim of offering cultural experiences with new formats under the "Parallels” label. On 10 and 11 August, Finca Malaveïna (Garriguella) will host two evenings of viticulture and music in a dream setting with Marco Mezquida as the star. On the first evening, together with guitarist Chicuelo, he will be presenting the première of their latest joint project No hay dos sin tres. The following day, Marco Mezquida will put music to Ravel’s Dreams. On the evening of 14 August, the Hotel Peralada Wine Spa & Golf becomes the perfect stage to enjoy a Blind Date between dancer Sol Picó and Marco Mezquida.

Educationalist, music therapist and singer Dámaris Gelabert, a leading figure in children’s song, comes to the Petit Peralada on 13 August with the concert Naturalment. A concert in the Auditorium featuring some of the singer’s best-known songs. Once again this year, and in gratitude to the town of Peralada, a free concert has been organised in the main square with Vespres d’Arnadí and Dani Espasa. This year, the Baroque group will be presenting on 11 August the show Weightless Bloom; a newly-created show concert with Baroque music and dance, where they will be performing works related to dance representative of the most important different styles of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in Europe.


A Tribute to Montserrat Caballé

The 2019 Festival is dedicated to the memory of the great soprano Montserrat Caballé who, together with Carmen Mateu, dreamed of and made it possible for Peralada to have a music festival of international prestige. With this in mind, the festival has also organised a photographic exhibition of some of the moments with which the diva rewarded the history of this festival. The Peralada public will be able to see the exhibition in the Castle Gardens throughout July and August.


The Castell de Peralada Festival expands its programme and extends throughout the region

This year, the cities of Figueres and Girona will host two artistic events scheduled and organised by the Castell de Peralada Festival. A proposal to strengthen the bonds with these two cities and open up the festival to new audiences. On 29 April, to coincide with World Dance Day, dancer and choreographer Sol Picó will be presenting Chasing a Dream at the La Cate arts venue. A show designed to show society the figure of the dancer and the language of dance. On 23 May at the Municipal Theatre in Girona, the Festival has programmed the theatre show Voltaire / Rousseau, La Disputa. The work by Jean-François Prévand adapted and directed masterfully by Josep María Flotats.