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Brundibár children’s opera goes on school tour

Budapest, 20 September 2013 – The Budapest Festival Orchestra in collaboration with the Palace of Arts launched a new and exciting festival called Bridging Europe. The BFO gave seven concerts during the event; they introduced the rarely heard hidden treasures of Czech culture to the Budapest audience of over 6000 people. The goal of Bridging Europe is to present a selected European country each year to Hungarian audiences through their cultures. “The Czechs were a great choice, I am breaking my head which country should be next” says Ivan Fischer music director of the Budapest Festival Orchestra.

The 30th Anniversary Season of the Budapest Festival Orchestra was opened with Dvořák’s masterpieces, his Requiem, Slavonic Dances, Piano concerto and Symphony No.8. According to a music critic, the first concert of the season „was beautiful: with magical horns, flowing tears and hosanna above”.

The Czech baroque evening gave a special angle to the works of Vejvanovsky, Zelenka and the Benda family, the baroque ensemble of the BFO was conducted by Nicholas McGegan, while the soloist was the magnificent Dominique Labelle. On 19 September contemporary Czech music wrapped-up the Czech cultural showcase of the Bridging Europe Festival.

The mission of the BFO however continues: within the framework of the orchestra’s educational programme, Bridging Europe’s opening performance, Hans Krása’s Brundibár children’s opera will go on a school tour this autumn- During the tour the opera will be performed in a dozen of schools and will be enjoyed by several thousand 10-14 years old students all around the country. Last year the Budapest Festival Orchestra presented Benjamin Britten’s children’s opera Noye’s Fludde with almost one hundred singing and music-playing children; over the season it was played in many schools in Budapest and around the country, bringing the joy of playing music together to almost 4500 school pupils.

The BFO views children and youth programmes being an organic and important part of its mission. Each season they play for younger audiences on more than fifty occasions, often involving them as active participants in the productions. The traditional and extremely successful Cocoa Concerts, , are designed for small children, the “Choose your Instrument” performances are for primary school pupils, while the orchestra organises a musical film contest for secondary school students. The Midnight Concerts are increasingly popular among young adults and university students.

The BFO continues to focus on its musical education strategy which offers amazing experiences to school-aged children and teenagers and draw them closer to classical music and the Budapest Festival Orchestra whilst engaging them in dialogue.