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January 4-10, 2022

The concept of ‘chamber music’ was first used in the XVII and XVIII centuries in Italy and Germany to make reference to the music played at court and home, in contrast to the formats used to play music for wider audiences in church or at the theatre. Later, in the second half of the XIX century, it was widely used to define the instrumental ensembles like string quartets, trios featuring the piano and wind instrument quintets. Instrumental chamber music grew widely in popularity in the XIX century and was considered an ‘elevated’ form of composition and interpretation. Composers like Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn and Schumann were among the most recognized innovators of chamber music of their time.

String quartets featuring two violins, viola and cello, have been for many composers the standard format for chamber music. But also the trumpet, the clarinet, the piano, the oboe and the flute have been among the most used instruments in some of the best known works of chamber music, especially since the second half of the XIX century. Historically and esthetically, factors such as the color of their sound, their musical range and their tonal possibilities have established these instruments among the composers’ all time favorites.

Masterpieces by artists such as Schubert, Mendelssohn, Schumann, Brahms and Franck are some of the most important works of the post-Beethoven era of instrumental chamber music of the XIX century. Although it is mostly associated with European culture, this genre was also widely popular in Latin America, particularly during the second half the XIX century.

The theme of the XVI Edition of the International Music Festival of Cartagena
The Color of Sound – Instrumental chamber music of the XIX Century

This edition of the International Music Festival of Cartagena will offer a wide understanding of the main trends and styles of the instrumental chamber music of the XIX century after the death of Ludwig van Beethoven, one of the main innovators of this genre.

Paradigmatic works by composers such as Weber, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Schumann, Brahms, Franck and Dvorak will be presented by different international ensembles which will represent the different technical and stylistic european schools of music: Germany-Austria, France, Russia, Eastern Europe and Italy.

The selection of works by each composer has been chosen taking into account their historic and artistic importance. Some of them are masterpieces that are well known by audiences worldwide, and others that are less known but contain characteristics that are of great relevance such as the search for tone, the colors of sound and the exploration of the musical possibilities of each instrument. This edition of the Festival will also present works of chamber music written by Colombian composers in the XIX and early XX century.

The artists

As it has become a tradition of the Festival, its artists are soloists or ensembles of wide international popularity and long experience with the chosen repertoire. The Festival holds a process of selection of well known musicians who have developed innovative interpretations of the chosen works and a deep understanding of their historic period.

The instrumental chamber music ensembles invited by the International Music Festival of Cartagena are the Modigliani Quartet from France, specialized in the works of French chamber music, the Russian Oistrakh Quartet, with a repertoire that includes works from Russian and Eastern European composers, the Goldmond Quartet from Germany, specialized in the works by the great German composers, and the septet Alban Berg Ensemble Wien from Austria.

Additional activities

While concerts are the main activities of the International Music Festival of Cartagena, other complimentary activities allow a deeper understanding of the selected repertoire and their historic periods. These activities include didactic and multidisciplinary formats that will offer the audience a more complete experience during the International Music Festival of Cartagena.

Master Classes

The Festival will offer classes and seminars conducted by international experts who are specialists in the chosen repertoire and historic period of the main theme of every edition of the International Music Festival of Cartagena.

Musical conferences by Giovanni Bietti

The musical conferences by maestro Giovanni Bietti have become one of the best known events of the International Music Festival of Cartagena. These classes, accompanied by the piano, provide a deeper understanding of the history of music, as well as the secrets of harmony and composition.

Press conferences with the artists

National and international artists invited by the Festival will be interviewed by Colombian and international journalists who every year visit this event in search for new talents and to document every new musical trend that the Festival offers to the world of art and culture.