Festival Peralada Livestream
The Festival Castell de Peralada presented the special Festival Castell Peralada Livestream edition at a streamed press conference held at the Marlborough Gallery in Barcelona. This is an exceptional edition adapted to the current situation, which is completely free for spectators to enjoy online on the Festival website (festivalperalada.com) and which will be held in the Carme venue of the Castell de Peralada between 22 and 31 July 2020.
The presentation featured the presence of Isabel Suqué, President of the Castell de Peralada Foundation, Oriol Aguilà, Director of the Festival Castell de Peralada, and artist Pablo Genovés, creator of the 2020 poster.
A programme of premières with artists bearing the Peralada seal
On 22 July, María Pagés will be the one to open the online edition. Alongside El Arbi El Harti, the bailaora has prepared exclusively for the Festival a newly-created show entitled Entremos en el Jardín. Accompanied by two female voices, a guitar, a cello, a violin and percussion, Pagés offers a dialogue between flamenco and poetry and presents the idea of the search for happiness and desire in an evening that the festival wishes to devote to the world of the arts and communication. The following day, 23 July, soprano Sondra Radvanovsky and singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, who were both scheduled to appear separately in the cancelled edition of the festival, will offer a discussion moderated by Jörn Weisbrodt on the Prima Donna; a fascinating debate about this opera figure, normally played by a soprano, that arouses so many passions and not a few rivalries, in a conversation where they will also talk about opera, about how they met, their artistic coming together and their shared projects. The festival will also table an intelligent debate about how we see the map of music, the stage arts and festivals of the future. So, on 24 July, María Pagés, Carlos Álvarez and Josep Pons will share impressions on Post-Covid-19 Culture and Festivals. Plastic artist Santi Moix and the Orquestra Simfònica del Liceu, led by Josep Pons, will come together at the Festival Castell de Peralada on the evening of 25 July, with a unique and singular performance dedicated to the health workers who have been on the front line during the pandemic. A concert-performance that begins with music by the orchestra, playing Symphony No. 7 in A Major, op. 92, by Ludwig van Beethoven, to mark the 250th anniversary of the German composer’s birth. The second part features Music for the Royal Fireworks by George Frideric Handel while Moix paints a large-scale work, using al fresco painting with the age-old technique that he used at the Romanesque church of Saurí, in the Pallars region. This is a pictorial transcription of the Hanabi festivals that greatly impressed the painter and that has been the basis for filling his works with explosions of colour. The concert can be heard live on Radio 4, and recorded the same evening on La2. It will also be broadcast on Radio Clásica at a later date to be announced. On 27 July, singer-songwriter Alfonso de Vilallonga returns to the festival accompanied by Pau Figueres, Juan Pastor, Rita Payes and Iannis Obiols, in the world première of his latest work Hors de Saison, an album in French with the essence of a true Déjeuner sur l’herbe that will pay tribute to the Costa Brava tourism industry. The Carme Church will host two evenings featuring lyric and composition; on 28 July, tenor David Alegret accompanied on the piano by Rubén Fernández Aguirre, will première CANTICEL, an homage to Josep Carner on the 50th anniversary of his death. A recital with works by Ortega, Serra and Tondrà, in which composers Alberto García Demestres and Albert Guinovart will première new music compositions based on Carner’s poems. The recital will be recorded by Catalunya Música and can also be seen on Canal33 in the autumn. Before this, though, on 27 July, Alegret, García Demestres, Guinovart, Ortega and Fernández Aguirre will feature in a round table on The Composition of Lied and Song in the Twenty-First Century, a space in which to consider and highlight the poetry and musical composition in our country and on how these new composers are contributing to the renewal of song in the twenty-first century. On 30 July, Malaga-born Carlos Álvarez, a Festival gold medal winner, will offer a brand-new recital where he will début a series of songs by Barcelona composer Miquel Ortega as well as opera arias, never before sung by the baritone, by such composers as Meyerbeer, Saint-Saëns, Delibes, Massenet, Cilea and Leoncavallo. The last of the performances, on the evening of 31 July, will feature the charismatic and talented Chassol. Inventor of the ultrascore genre, the French performer will be presenting his work LUDI for the first time in Catalonia. A musical film inspired by the novel Das Glasperlenspiel (The Glass Bead Game) by German author Hermann Hesse, which looks at the concepts of play, time and music from both the human and the animal point of view. The concert is in response to the festival’s traditional focus on the French audiences who visit us year after year.
The Campus Peralada will also feature two sessions this year at the Livestream Festival. On 29 July, composer and conductor Miquel Ortega, without a doubt one of the stars of this edition, will offer a workshop on composition and will share working tools and systems with performers, singers and composers. Besides this, shortly before his performance on 31 July, Chassol will offer a virtual Campus get-together where he will talk about his musical film Ludi, his creation processes and how he has given form to his own style, called ultrascore, about his great passion for cinema and soundtracks and about why the images are as important as the music.
This year, the Festival Castell Peralada Livestream programme will reach the big screen. The Barcelona Film Fest and the Festival Castell de Peralada are renewing their collaboration, and this year the Verdi cinemas in Barcelona will be offering the shows Entremos en el Jardín by María Pagés, the concert by Alfonso de Vilallonga and the musical film Ludi by Chassol live. Three shows to enjoy in Barcelona for free.
Between 22 July and 31 August, the festival website will also host a photographic showcase of Pablo Genovés where you can discover some of his works. The author of the 2020 festival poster uses digital photography and pictorial techniques. His work looks at the concepts of memory, past and reality, and his combination of photography and painting imbues his images with a character of their own. In this mix of languages, he seeks to show the pros and cons of human existence. Visitors to the website will discover a series of photographs showing luxurious architectural, spaces such as palaces, libraries and theatres, under the effects of the forces of nature, as this year’s poster shows.
As a preview of this new cultural proposal, on 11 July, Canal 33 will be broadcasting the opera Rinaldo by Handel, premièred and recorded by international channel Mezzo in 2018 at the Festival Castell de Peralada. With a cast including Xavier Sabata, Núria Rial and Juan Sancho, and the baroque formation Vespres d’Arnadí conducted by Dani Espasa performing the score, this baroque opera in concert version is being shown on Catalan TV for the first time. The broadcast of Rinaldo will be preceded by the documentary 'Turandot, the Deconstruction. Portrait of the Festival Castell de Peralada'.
We would like to thank the artists for their cooperation in bringing about this online edition, the sponsors who, once again, have shown their commitment to the cultural project of the Peralada Festival, the institutions for their support, the town of Peralada and the media for speaking up for us. Thanks to everyone, one more year, the Festival Castell de Peralada is continuing with its commitment to the arts, music and culture, now more necessary than ever. We at the Castell de Peralada Foundation will continue working to ensure that the arts do not stop, and we invite you all to come and see us again in 2021 at the Castle Park Auditorium in a new edition of the Festival Castell de Peralada with all normality.