Once again this summer, the Verbier Festival was home to three full orchestras: the Verbier Festival Orchestra, the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra and the Verbier Festival Junior Orchestra, demonstrating its ability to combine education and artistic creation within a leading European festival for classical music.
For 17 days, the Verbier Festival has reaffirmed its commitment to its humanitarian values and to the inclusion of musicians from all backgrounds. The Verbier Festival therefore decided to make its opening night on Friday 15 July 2022 a concert for peace. Italian conductor Gianandrea Noseda led the Verbier Festival Orchestra (VFO), with 2012 and 2017 Academy alumna, Ukrainian pianist Anna Fedorova, as soloist. This inaugural concert was marked by the presence of many officials, including, for the first time, Mr Alain Berset, Federal Councillor in charge of the Federal Department of Home Affairs.
The Festival’s Mainstage programme placed the voice in the spotlight for this year’s edition. The intimate recitals of Michael Fabiano and Anna El-Khashem were presented alongside three operas in concert version: Mozart’s Don Giovanni and Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera, with a new format for the Salle des Combins. In addition to the prestigious casts, which brought together accomplished artists (Peter Mattei, Olga Peretyatko, Ludovic Tézier, Magdalena Kožená), and alumni and students of the Verbier Festival Academy’s Atelier Lyrique, giant screens enhanced these two operatic events for an exceptional experience. Finally, Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel, was performed by the Verbier Festival Junior Orchestra under the helm of Stanislav Kochanovsky. The Mozart Requiem was performed with Sir Simon Rattle, following the withdrawal of Sir András Schiff. Two other moments that caught the attention of the Festivalgoers were Address Unknown with Evgeny Kissin and Thomas Hampson and Poulenc’s La Voix humaine with Anna Caterina Antonacci.
This year, 61 concerts split between the majestic Salle des Combins and the more intimate Église generated ticket sales of 1.8 million Swiss francs, with over 37,000 tickets sold (45% of which were sold online). The share of Swiss spectators reached 60%.
96 Academy masterclasses and workshops, featuring the best of a new generation of soloists, chamber ensembles and singers, attracted 5,600 spectators. Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel, performed by singers of the Academy’s Atelier Lyrique with the Verbier Festival Junior Orchestra and conductor Stanislav Kochanovsky, was a highlight of the Festival’s closing weekend.
UNLTD, with its adventurous programming of concerts, talks, kids workshops and performances, plus well-being activities from morning to late night, attracted a cross-generational audience either completely new to the Festival or looking to explore it in a new way. Over 14 nights in its intimate Concert Club, UNLTD packed in audiences for a range of performances from classical, jazz, electronic music and even burlesque. These concerts were sold-out each night. Down the mountain from Verbier in Le Châble, two weeks of children’s workshops and performances attracted children and families from across the region, as did an electrifying ‘Off-piste’ performance by Cuban Jazz artist Roberto Fonseca. Free concerts on the streets and high above Verbier at La Chaux invited audiences of all ages to experience the Verbier Festival through a new, easy-going lens. UNLTD presented 103 events and attracted an audience of 5,350.
The Verbier Festival and the Swiss Philanthropy Foundation hosted the fourth Swiss Philanthropy Forum at the Cinéma de Verbier on the theme “How can philanthropy be more impactful in an age of disruption?” 160 spectators and more than a hundred people online participated in the debate via a livestream.
A loyal partner of the Verbier Festival for 16 consecutive years, medici.tv, the world’s leading classical music channel, broadcast 32 concerts live, with audience figures reaching record levels before the closing weekend (over 830K views from 161 countries). Notably, there were unprecedented audiences in Japan (No. 2 with 12% of the audience), with the USA leading and France as the third biggest audience.
Fidèle partenaire du Verbier Festival depuis 16 années consécutives, medici.tv, plateforme de musique classique leader dans le monde, a diffusé 32 concerts en direct, les audiences ayant même atteint des niveaux records sur le période du festival (plus de 970 K vues depuis 163 pays). À noter : la performance inédite du Japon (N° 2 avec 12% d’audience), derrière les USA et devant la France. Tous les concerts restent disponibles en replay gratuit jusqu’au 30 octobre 2022.
With the aim of understanding its audiences better and improving the visitor experience, the Verbier Festival deployed the muse project, in collaboration with the EPFL. Two young hostesses collected more than 650 opinions and comments thanks to an interactive questionnaire on a tablet.
This 29th Verbier Festival was made possible thanks to the generous support of numerous philanthropic donors, companies and public authorities, in particular Mrs. Aline Foriel-Destezet, the Friends of the Verbier Festival, the municipality of Val de Bagnes, the Loterie Romande, Bank Julius Baer and Sicpa.
The next edition will be held from 14 to 30 July 2023 and will mark the 30th anniversary of the Verbier Festival.