Cistermúsica: a meeting point for music lovers

24 May 2024

What to expect for the 2024 edition

Cistermúsica is presenting its 32nd edition, which will take place between 28 June and 3 August 2024. The programme includes more than 40 concerts under the motto “Timeless”, evoking the undeniable universal dimension of music, which is reflected not only in the quality and diversity of the groups and artists, but also in the contrast of styles that contribute to the richness of the programme.

The Cistermúsica Season

In recent years, Cistermúsica has evolved into a Season, maintaining the Festival as the highlight of the programme in the summer, but filling out the year-round offer with artistic proposals. Currently, the Cistermúsica Season includes other events on the calendar, such as Cistermúsica Sacra, which takes place during the Easter period and focuses on choral music, and Cistermúsica Fronteiras, a contemporary music series that takes place in the last quarter of the year.

A reference on the national scene

The excellence of Cistermúsica has been confirmed not only by its audience and specialised critics, but also by its institutional partners, of which the Ministry of Culture stands out, which reiterated its support for the Festival for the next 2023-26 quadriennium, with the highest classification, in the area of Music, in the last national competition for Support to the Arts.

The acknowledgment and distinction also emerge from the international environment: since 2015, the Festival has had the “Remarkable Festival” seal, granted by EFFE - Europe For Festivals, Festivals for Europe. In addition, Cistermúsica has been a member of the European Festivals Association, a European organisation and network composed of leading festivals.

The Festival have been associated with prestigious institutions and partners, who share the same cooperative way of regarding culture. Since 2019, the Festival has had the honorable High Patronage of His Excellency the President of the Portuguese Republic.

National Scope

In recent years, other territories have witnessed the perfect communion of music and dance with the historical heritage, as the festival takes part of the programme to other monasteries of Cistercian heritage that are found all over Portugal (Cistercian Route) and others monuments with which Alcobaça has affinity, such as the Monastery of Batalha and the University of Coimbra, which are also part of the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Cistermúsica has also extended its geographic scope to municipalities all across Portugal and with some international partners, with a networked programme that contributes to a coherent and systematised cultural project in these territories.

Portugal’s Best Small Festival in 2023

Cistermúsica – Alcobaça Music Festival was one of the winners of the most recent edition of the Iberian Festival Awards (March 2024), having been honoured at national level alongside the Meo Kalorama (major) and Cooljazz (medium-sized) festivals.
The Best Small Festival category rewards festivals that welcome up to 1,500 spectators a day and is the result of a public vote from a shortlist of 10 nominees, after an initial selection of 53 candidate festivals, in a process organised by APORFEST – Associação Portuguesa de Festivais de Música (Portuguese Association of Music Festivals).
The Festival’s reputation in the Iberian context was strengthened and the expectations that the public and the organisation have for the 32nd edition of Cistermúsica were also reinforced.