In the face of adversity: New Danish festival launches this summer

  • Christian Teztlaff stars in inaugural edition of the Schackenborg Festival
  • One of Denmark’s most beautiful Royal castles plays host to a music festival for the very first time
  • Festival showcases some of Europe’s most exciting new musical talents

With much of the performing arts sector still struggling to recover from 18 months of disruption and with many organisations continuing to face existential threats to their existence, now might not appear to be the most promising time to launch a totally new artistic initiative, yet that is exactly what is happening in Denmark when a brand new music festival launches next month.

The Schackenborg Music Festival is a bold new endeavour dreamt up by the Danish Clarinet Trio. Their vision was to bring music to one of Denmark’s most beautiful locations in a somewhat forgotten and lesser known corner of the country – Southern Jutland.

That location is the elegant Royal Schackenborg Castle, a focal point for the cultural life of the region – not just in Denmark but in neighbouring Germany as well. Built in the 1660s it was until very recently a private Royal residence, and the festival marks the latest stage in its rebirth as a place to be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.


The region has over time shifted between being situated in Germany and Denmark, and reflecting that local history is one of 3 themes of the festival, with a focus on Danish and German performers. A second theme is in supporting emerging talent in those countries through a programme of masterclasses, artistic exchanges and musical collaborations, while the third theme of the festival is the aim to raise the profile of a relatively unknown corner of Denmark, with the aim in future editions of attracting international visitors to the festival and region.

“Creativity and culture find an opportunity to flourish in even the most adverse of times” said Tommaso Lonquich from the Danish Clarinet Trio. “Rather than be disheartened by the disruption to arts and culture during the last 18 months we have instead put our creative energies into developing and realising this new festival, which we hope will provide cultural light and optimism as we emerge from a difficult time. Our ambitions go beyond year one of course, with detailed plans already existing for how the festival will develop over the next 3 years and beyond, with artists including cellist Nicolas Altstaedt and pianist Alexander Lonquich already confirmed for 2022. We are looking forward to the musical future with optimism and hope and can’t wait to welcome audiences to the magical setting of Schackenborg Castle” 

This first year of the festival sees all events taking place in the atmospheric location of the Castle Field Barn within the grounds of the Castle. Built in the 1870’s the barn has recently been fully refurbished, providing a unique setting and backdrop for this inaugural festival.