- 01 June 2012 - Vilnius Festival starts on 1 June
- 02 June 2011 - China Shanghai Arts Festival delegation visits Vilnius Festival
- 02 May 2011 - VILNIUS FESTIVAL 2011: seven evenings ushering in the summer season
- 04 March 2002 - Highlights of Vilnius Festival 2002 (May-June 2002)
Ausros Vartu g. 5
A multidisciplinary festival with programmes presenting classical and contemporary music. Symphonic concerts, recitals and chamber programmes, opera and ballet spectacles, together with early music programmes and jazz.
This festival has been an EFA member since 1999.
Each EFA member manages its own Calendar. In case there is no programme availabable for this year, please visit the festival's own website.
Founded in 1997 by the National Philharmonic Society of Lithuania, the largest concert organisation in Lithuania, the Vilnius Festival has soon been acknowledged as one of the major music events in the region. Aiming at the presentation of a grand-scale and chamber joint-projects performed by prominent Lithuanian and foreign musicians, commissioning and the production of the news works by contemporary Lithuanian composers, co-productions with other European festivals, during the four years of its existence the Vilnius Festival made a substantial contribution into the development of the musical life as well as cultural tourism in the capital city.
The performances of the world renowned BBC Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Yan Pascal Tortelier, “Sinfonia Varsovia” conducted by Krzysztof Penderecki, “Moscow soloists” with Jurij Bashmet, David Geringas with Kaunas State Choir, Phillip Glass and Kronos Quartet or Maria Vivo dance company encouraged the organizers of the Vilnius Festival to discover new attractive venues in the city, such as Vilnius University Churchyard, Courtyard of the Vilnius Paintings Gallery, The Assumption Church, Church of St.Francis and St.Bernard, Cinema “Lietuva”.
From the very beginning, the Vilnius Festival created possibilities for cooperation and co-productions of the Lithuanian and foreign musicians. In 1997, the first Vilnius Festival opened with Prokofjev’s “Romeo and Juliet” with the Lithuanian National Ballet Company and orchestra “Philharmonie der Nationen” under the baton of Mstislav Rostropovich. Later on this production toured internationally.
In 1998, the Festival produced Mozart’s “Cosi fan tutte” with the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra and international soloists under the baton of Saulius Sondeckis.
The international Chopin’s year was marked with the premiere of the Lithuanian composer’s Onute Narbutaite piano quintet “Hommage a Fryderyk” performed by Vadim Repin, Jurij Bashmet, David Geringas, Hans Roelofsen and Muza Rubackyte. In 2000, the Vilnius Festival produced the opera “The Bear” by Bronius Kutavicius, one of the most famous contemporary Lithuanian composers.
One of the major partners of the Vilnius Festival – the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Juozas Domarkas continues its tradition to perform with the talented soloists of the younger generation, Vadim Repin, Joshua Bell among others. Every year, on the 15th of June, National Day of Hope and Mourning, the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra performs the Requiem or Mass (by Britten, Berlioz, Bernstein, Verdi) to commemorate the first deportations of Lithuanians to Siberia.
Close cooperation with foreign diplomatic missions and cultural institutes created unique opportunities to present to Lithuanian audiences a large repertoire of Baroque music performed by Drottningholm Baroque Orchestra and Eric Ericsson Choir, Ensemble Baroque de Limoges, Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and The King’s Consort.
One of the major tasks of the Vilnius Festival remains in promoting the Lithuanian musicians, winners of national and international prizes. The recitals of Muza Rubackyte, Petras Geniusas, Raimundas Katilius, Ruta and Zbignevas Ibelhauptas proved once again the high professionalism and creative potential of Lithuanian artists.
Also jazz music was strongly supported by the local audiences, which warmly welcomed Dave Brubeck, The New Orleans Rhythm Kings and McCoy Tyner Trio at the Vilnius Festival.
The brief history of the young Vilnius Festival reminds us of the words by Lord Yehudi Menuhin: “… at a time when we seem to be constantly preoccupied with strife and care – international, racial, economic, religious-, how refreshing it is to look at this programme of music which manages to combine a host of cultures all interacting with one another”.