Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Castleton Festival Announces National & International Partnerships & Expanded Program

2011 Festival to open Friday, June 25 and run through to Sunday, July 24

Opening night gala to feature a new production of Puccini's La Bohème conducted by Lorin Maazel and directed by William Kerley in an unconventional, intimate staging.

New productions of Kurt Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins and Ravel’s L’Enfant et les Sortilèges to be featured at the 2011 Castleton Festival in Rappahannock County, Virginia

The Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas , Virginia to host three Castleton Festival performances

A new partnership with China’s National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) to begin in 2011 with two concerts by the Castleton Festival Orchestra in Beijing July 29 & 30

The Castleton Festival & NCPA to co-produce a new staging of Rossini’s The Barber of Seville to be premiered in Beijing November 2011 and to open the 2012 Castleton Festival

Castleton Festival productions of Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia and Albert Herring to be presented by Cal Performances in Berkeley, California in 2011 The 2011 Castleton Festival to feature guest instrumentalists and singers including mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves and violinist Jennifer Koh

Artistic Directors of the Castleton Festival, conductor Lorin Maazel and Dietlinde Turban Maazel, today announced that the third festival to be held Friday, June 25 through Sunday, July 24, 2011 will open with a distinct new production of Puccini’s La Bohème conducted by Lorin Maazel and will also feature new productions of Kurt Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins and Ravel’s L’Enfant et les Sortilèges. The Castleton Festival will continue to expand, with Maestro Maazel leading three performances at the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas, VA, and concerts by the Castleton Festival Orchestra and Maestro Maazel presented by China’s National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) in Beijing on July 29 and 30, heralding the beginning of a new partnership. The roster of performers at the 2011 festival will also expand, with instrumentalists and singers including mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves and violinist Jennifer Koh to perform alongside and mentor the young artists taking part in the Castleton Residency Program. The Castleton Festival Orchestra will continue to bring together talented young musicians from around the world.

“The Castleton Festival Orchestra has grown into a world symphony of young talent,” says Maestro Maazel. “As in previous years, we will have top-flight musicians from many countries and organizations and in addition to players from Qatar , England , Europe, South America and the United States , in 2011 the Castleton Festival will welcome new aspiring talent from Korea and China .”

“Our festival is about the future. Our goals are vibrant and are being achieved and I look forward with confidence and joy to more years of mentoring and nurturing talented young artists at Castleton.”

The heart of the Castleton Festival will remain at the Maazels’ 550-acre property, Castleton Farms, in Rappahannock County, VA with performances of operas and orchestral concerts. In addition to the new productions and four orchestral concerts, revivals of previous Castleton Festival productions of Stravinsky’s A Soldier’s Tale and Manuel de Falla’s Master Pedro’s Puppet Show will be presented at Castleton Farms during the 2011 festival. All of the Castleton Festival productions are directed by Castleton’s Resident Stage Director, William Kerley, with sets and costumes by Nicholas Vaughan and lighting by Rie Ono.

The opening night gala on Friday, June 25 will feature a new production of Puccini’s La Bohème that Maestro Maazel describes as taking a fresh and different approach in terms of staging, an approach that has become a hallmark of Mr. Kerley’s festival productions. La Bohème will be performed four times at Castleton Farms throughout the festival.

The 2011 Festival will expand eastward into Virginia – and closer to Washington , DC – with three performances held at the Hylton Performing Arts Center located on George Mason University ’s Prince William campus in Manassas , VA. A concert version of Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess will be held on Thursday, July 3 and a concert of American music commemorating the 150th anniversary of The Battle of Bull Run featuring mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves will be held on Thursday, July 21. A performance of Il Tabarro & Gianni Schicchi from Puccini’s Il Trittico that was presented at the 2010 Castleton Festival will be held on Thursday, July 14. All three performances will be led by Maestro Maazel in the 1,121-seat Merchant Hall, almost three times the size of the Castleton Festival tent.

“In 2011, the new partnerships that have been forged will place the Castleton Festival squarely upon the international stage,” says Maestro Maazel. “Our new partnership with the Hylton Performing Arts Center will give the Festival a splendid venue for its repertoire and provide the HPAC with the highest quality of performance. Washingtonians can enjoy selected fruits of the Castleton Festival in Manassas , a short ride down the pike from DC. Of particular interest to me, who resides in a 1857 Castleton manor house which served as a hospital to both Confederate and Union forces during the Civil War, is the 150th anniversary of The Battle of Bull Run that we celebrate in Manassas on July 21.”

A new international partnership between the Castleton Festival and China ’s National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) will begin at the conclusion of the 2011 festival when Maestro Maazel and the Castleton Festival Orchestra will perform two concerts on July 29 and 30 at the state-of-the-art concert hall in Beijing . A co-production between the NCPA and the Castleton Festival of a new staging of Rossini’s The Barber of Seville directed by Mr. Kerley will be premiered in Beijing in November 2011 and will open the 2012 Castleton Festival.

“Since the opening of the spectacular facility in Beijing sporting a state-of-the art opera house, a recital/chamber opera space plus a concert hall all operated under the aegis of the NCPA, some 450 performances of classical music, drama and opera are given in Beijing each year,” says Maestro Maazel. “I am delighted that the Castleton Festival Orchestra has been invited to give two performances in the splendid concert hall and that we will work with the NCPA on The Barber of Seville. We are also discussing future projects that will further entwine the two institutions over the years to come.”

The Castleton Festival will also expand nationally during the 2010-11 concert season with Maestro Maazel leading Castleton productions of Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia and Albert Herring at the University of California in Berkeley presented by Cal PerformancesMarch 24-27, 2011.

“One of the most imaginative and comprehensive performing arts presenting and commissioning programs in the United States is unquestionably Cal Performances located on the campus of the University of California at Berkeley . The variety and quality of the performances is inspiring and at the cutting-edge of healthy innovation,” says Maestro Maazel. “The Castleton Festival is immensely proud to have its productions of The Rape of Lucretia and Albert Herring showcased in Berkeley this season and honored that ours will be an ongoing relationship for many years to come.”

The inaugural Castleton Festival was held in 2009 and grew out of the Castleton Residency Program for young artists run by The Châteauville Foundation, founded by Maestro Maazel and Mrs. Turban Maazel in 1997. The Castleton Festival brings around 200 young artists including singers, conductors, instrumentalists, directors, costume designers and lighting designers to live on the property for eight weeks to work with professional mentors and prepare the performances of the operas and concerts.

At the previous Festivals Maestro Maazel led Rolex Master Classes for conductors and three graduates from this program have been appointed Associate Conductors for the 2011 Castleton Festival. Han-Na Chang will return to lead the revival performances of Manuel de Falla’s Master Pedro’s Puppet Show and Levi Hammer, Assistant Conductor of the Akron Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the Akron Youth Symphony, will lead the performances of The Seven Deadly Sins. Blake Richardson, who has recently taken part in residency programs with the Vienna Philharmonic and Barcelona Symphony, will be the third Associate Conductor.

Off-stage, the Castleton Festival has formed a new partnership with distinguished Virginia-based French chef, Gérard Pangaud, to enhance the Castleton experience for visitors. From the beginning, the Castleton Festival has worked with local farmers, wineries and restaurants to bring world-class locally-produced food to visitors to Castleton Farms. In 2011, Mr. Pangaud, who is the consultant for the Blue Rock Inn in Little Washington, will create fine dining menus for the Festival and guests will be given the option of pre-ordering food and wine when they purchase tickets. Dining options will range from sit-down, full-service meals to gourmet picnic boxes.

“One of the added attractions of the Castleton Festival experience next year will be the expanded dining opportunities provided by Gérard Pangaud who will make supper after the performances well worth waiting for,” says Maestro Maazel.

Full program and artist information for the 2011 Castleton Festival will be announced in January 2011. Tickets for the 2011 Castleton Festival, including Weekend Passes, will be available November 1st from www.castletonfestival.org.

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