11.11. - 20.11.22

La Grande Gare

Autumn Festival Baden-Baden


The railway picks up speed in the nineteenth century, technology encroaches on more and more areas of everyday life – and what about the composers? They are discovering a new mechanics of feelings. Not only the orchestras are getting bigger, but the voices are too: Pietro Mascagni's verism anticipates film editing, while with Wagner we find the opposite. His endlessly flowing music encompasses heroes and harmonies alike, dispenses with arias and is teeming with leitmotifs that give voice to the unconscious long before the advent of modern psychology. With Thomas Hengelbrock, Teodor Currentzis, and Antonello Manacorda, the Autumn Festival will feature three conductors who are known for their uncompromising approach. Pursuing a sound ideal that eschews routine, they shuttle back and forth between large orchestras and their own ensembles. Their historical forerunner: Hector Berlioz, who unleashed the Romantic orchestra and invented the symphonic artist drama with his Symphonie fantastique. Berlioz also coined the term “festival” – in Baden-Baden, incidentally. An “idée fixe” that continues to bear fruit today.

The Program

11.11.22 – 13.11.22


Pietro Mascagni

Mascagni's Cavalleria rusticana marks the beginning of veristic opera, which isn’t afraid to raise the curtain for farmers, prostitutes, and the petite bourgeoisie, for small wine merchants who live from one carousal to the next. Cavalleria is full of piquant French harmonies which translated the bold ideas of Wagner's Tristan into their own idiom. An irresistible combination: no opera was more successful in its time. And now? What else is going to be revealed under Hengelbrock's X-ray vision? We can’t wait to find out!


SA 12.11.22


Antonello Manacorda, Balthasar-Neumann-Ensemble

Wagner brewed mysterious magic potions in the vein of dark Romanticism, which promises poison, phantoms, and pleasure. The pendulum swung after 1800, when the angel of reason was supplanted by the devil of desires. Carl Maria von Weber took the Wolf’s Gorge near Baden-Baden as the model for his Devil scene in Der Freischütz, and Hector Berlioz, the great admirer of Weber and friend of Baden-Baden, included the Devil in his Symphonie fantastique.


17.11.22 – 20.11.22


Andreas Schager, Brigitte Christensen

The black that Teodor Currentzis chooses for his attire is associated with the night, which, in Tristan, is positively charged as a contrast to the day with all its lies and conventions. In terms of cultural history, it represents a turning away from sight and towards touch. The shift began with Romanticism – and this is where Teodor Currentzis's artistic approach is also rooted. Rather than observation, he seeks devotion. And because with Currentzis the exterior is fully substantiated by the artistic results, we too have inferred the essence from the appearance and are looking forward to a performance that is out of this world.


SA 19.11.22



A “carte blanche,” in other words the freedom to set the list of works after the program printing deadline, is a privilege we unfortunately cannot grant to every artist. With Teodor Currentzis, we’re willing – in the knowledge that this artist crusades against any museification of music and demands spontaneity, even if it pushes a colossus like the Festspielhaus to its limits. So follow us into unknown waters! The results will speak for themselves. We are looking forward to a concert evening that, in typical Currentzis fashion, promises to be extraordinary.




Deutsch-französisches Sing-Fest zum Mitmachen

Deutsch-französisches Sing-Fest zum Mitmachen Die neuen Herbstfestspiele möchten Grenzen überwinden. Das klingt in Zeiten einer lebendigen Europäischen Union etwas merkwürdig, wird deshalb aber nicht unwichtiger. Auch ohne Schlagbäume und Zollkontrollen existieren Grenzen – und seien es vielleicht auch eher Sprach- und Kulturbarrieren. Der Balthasar-Neumann-Chor möchte dazu motivieren, diese weiter abzubauen. Und wie? Natürlich mit Gesang und einem Konzert auf der großen Festspielhaus- Bühne. Entstehen wird ein Projektchor, der unter Anleitung der Chorprofis im Vorfeld des Festivals in Workshops probt und so sein Programm erarbeitet.

22.11.22 Music Teaching Day

Inspiration without limits

For many years, the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden has been cooperating with the Regional Council of Karlsruhe and the State of Baden-Württemberg in the project of continuing education. On Music Teaching Day, artists will offer inspiration on the subject of music teaching. Shortly after the La Grande Gare festival, interdisciplinary events will also feature on the program. The exact program will be announced in september 2022.

Rausch und Romantik

Kulturreise Herbstfestspiele

Liebe, Eifersucht, Rausch: Es geht hoc her in der Oper „Cavalleria Rusticana“, einer der beiden Festspiel-Aufführungen, die im Mittelpunkt dieser Kulturreise stehen. Im Sinfoniekonzert begegnen einem sogar Hexen und Teufel. Passend dazu gibt es neben den teuflisch guten Festmenüs auch eine Wein- und Schinkenprobe – wir sind schließlich im Schwarzwald, in dem es schon immer hoch herging.

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Gefördert durch die Beauftragte der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien