Music Chapel Festival

A tribute to Eugène Ysaÿe, the King of the Violin

4.12.2019 > 7.12.2019 @Flagey

For its 10th edition, the Music Chapel Festival in Flagey pays tribute to Eugène Ysaÿe, an extraordinary artist who inspired the Music Chapel project under the auspices of Queen Elisabeth. From 4 to 7 December, the festival will illustrate the different facets of this leading figure nicknamed The King of the Violin, who was a virtuoso, teacher, conductor and composer. Eugène Ysaÿe was a musical celebrity in his lifetime, performing hundreds of concerts in Europe and touring Russia and the United States on several occasions. Today, he remains an emblematic figure of the Franco-Belgian school of violin and has inspired several generations of violinists across the world.

This festival will enable his musical heirs to pay tribute to him, over the course of four prestigious concerts at Studio4:

  • 4.12.2019: Augustin Dumay, a Master in Residence at the Chapel, opens the Festival with the Mozart concerto in G major, K. 216, which Eugène Ysaÿe was very fond of and for which he wrote one of the finest cadences. The Métamorphoses ensemble and the Octopus choir will perform one of Ysaÿe’s favorite vocal works, Fauré’s Requiem, with the young baritone Leon Kosavic and the Belgian soprano Julie Gebhart, under the direction of Raphaël Feye.
  • 5.12.2019: To illustrate his presence in the United States and his many tours on the other side of the Atlantic, this festival’s guest star, Joshua Bell, will present a great recital in homage to the maestro.
  • 6.12.2019: The composer is also highlighted with the Brussels Philharmonic, conducted by Stéphane Denève in Harmonies du Soir and Amitiés, performed by the new generation of Franco-Belgian artists: Lorenzo Gatto, Yossif Ivanov and the Quatuor Hermès. The Brussels Philharmonic will also perform the Boléro by Ravel, whom Ysaÿe particularly admired.
  • 7.12.2019: The program offered by Renaud Capuçon gives pride of place to the composer’s most loved musical form, the symphonic poem for violin and orchestra. He will perform Eugène Ysaÿe’s Poème Elégiaque and Poème by E. Chausson, dedicated to Ysaÿe and accompanied by the Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège, conducted by Jean-Jacques Kantorow. An allusion to Ysaÿe’s Liège origins …He also offers as a world première the rediscovery of the concerto composed by Ysaÿe, performed by Yossif Ivanov.

With no fewer than three concerts a day, the festival’s musical program also reveals the admiration in which Eugène Ysaÿe was held by his contemporaries, as well as the former’s firm favorites and pet works. The festival also offers an exceptional performance of Ysaÿe’s 6 sonatas for solo violin by the Canadian violinist Kerson Leong.

And as the festival will be paying tribute to a lover of life and a lover of music, major artists such as Miguel da Silva, Philippe Graffin, Elina Buksha, Vladyslava Luchenko, Pavel Kolesnikov, Jane Cho and the Chapel’s Artists in Residence will perform chamber-music pieces cherished by Eugène Ysaÿe.

The off-festival will offer numerous encounters and live talks centered on Eugène Ysaÿe: his life, with Marie Cornaz, his works, with Xavier Falques, plus his aesthetic environment, his meeting with Queen Elisabeth, told by Michel Stockhem. It is also the opportunity to see the preview of the documentary film on Eugène Ysaÿe through the eyes of his great-grandson, Marc Ysaÿe, the famous rock figure on the Belgian scene. For its part, Le salon d’Eugène brings together young artists informally around a drink and a piano, to take part in relaxed musical soirées, as in Ysaÿe’s day.

In this year that marks the 80th anniversary of the Music Chapel, the Music Chapel Festival ‘Tribute to Ysaÿe’ should please both informed music lovers and the wider general public thanks to the richness of a program that will sketch out the emblematic musical personality of Eugène Ysaÿe.

Info & Booking:

Communiqué de presse FR

Press release EN

Persbericht NL

Download the media kit here: dossierdepresse_flagey2019_6

Download the flyer here