As the opera houses and theatres across Europe are winding down ready for the long summer dark period of July and August, the festivals are making their preparations for their busiest time of the year.
This Friday the Open-Air Festival commences with a Star Parade in the glorious outdoor setting of Margitsziget. The densely packed programme this year spans 12 weeks and has something for everyone. Opera, jazz, theatre, musicals, dance and children’s shows combine to make the Summer Festival bigger and better than before.
For three months the audiences can enjoy the experience of being in this beautiful green space in the heart of Budapest to escape the frenzied city. Amongst the darkening skies, the fireflies and the fading evening heat, the stages will be ablaze with radically different shows until the theatres open their doors once again in September.
Verdi’s glorious “La Traviata” is just one of the shows that will première at the festival as well as the dramatic musical “Evita” by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Monte Carlo Ballet will perform “Romeo and Juliet”, while to mark the 400th year of the writer’s death, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre Company are also guests with the sparkling comedy “The Two Gentlemen of Verona”.
Opening the Star Parade on Margitsziget this Friday evening is the Romantic Classics concert, which features celebrated pianist Yuja Wang and will be conducted by Zoltán Kocsis. The programme features Ravel’s “Piano Concerto in G Major”, Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” and Dvorak’s “New World Symphony”, and will be accompanied by the Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra.
Throughout the summer the island will be a green haven for some of the most famous performers in Hungary such as Andrea Rost, Erika Miklósa, Zoltán Kocsis, Tamás Vásáry, Gergely Madaras and Domonkos Héja.
Guest stars at the Open-Air Theatre will include James Valenti, Yuja Wang, Marc Heller, Sébastien Guéze, Giuseppe Filianote and Stacey Kent to name just a few. Theatres may be beautiful and opulent, but to experience a concert or performance under the night sky when the central European heat has settled to a gentle warmth is a magical feeling.
Szabad Tér Színház/ Open-Air Theatre
From Friday June 10
until Tuesday August 30
Festival tickets and information:
Nagymező utca 68, District VI