Pierre-Laurent Aimard returns to the Aldeburgh Festival this summer for his eighth and final season as Artistic Director of Aldeburgh Music, running June 10 through 26.
Headlining this summer’s festival is the Catalogue d’Oiseaux project on June 19, a full day in which Aimard will bring Olivier Messiaen’s evocation of birdsong to life with performances of the entire piece over four concerts from sunrise to midnight. The performances will be set against natural panoramas, allowing audiences to hear the birds evoked by the piano alongside the songs of the myriad real birds of the Suffolk cost. Precluding this day of performance, Aimard presents “From Birdsong to Music” on June 17, a demonstration of how Messiaen transcribed the sounds he heard into musical notation, and joins Tamara Stefanovich for a series of Catalogue d’Oiseaux-focused public masterclasses, running June 14 through 18.
Aimard also performs Berg’s Chamber Concerto with Thomas Zehetmair on June 15; a solo recital featuring UK premieres by György Kurtág, Marco Stroppa, and George Benjamin on June 24; a world premiere by Featured Composer Julian Anderson on June 25; and works by Ligeti, Bizet, and Bartók in a concert with pianists Tamara Stefanovich, Emanuel Ax, and Lorenzo Soules on June 26.
Other festival highlights include the newly-commissioned Illuminations which fuses music and contemporary circus performance; a residency by the French period orchestra Les Siècles, a series that juxtaposes contemporaries Benjamin Britten and Michael Tippett; and visits by John Eliot Gardiner and the Monteverdi Choir, Emanuel Ax, Ian Bostridge, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and Britten Sinfonia.