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Lucerne Festival centres on love and lovers

The music festival in the central Swiss city of Lucerne opens on Thursday under the theme of “Eros” and for more than six weeks focuses on famous lovers.

Some of the world’s most outstanding orchestras, conductors and soloists will take part in one of Switzerland annual cultural highlights.

This year’s opening concert features Beethoven’s only opera, Fidelio, performed by the Lucerne Festival Orchestra conducted by Claudio Abbado.

Audiences will also experience fateful romantic triangles in Wagner’s Tristan and Isolde, Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande and Schoenberg’s Gurre-Lieder. The tragedy of Romeo and Juliet will be featured in two versions: Prokofiev’s ballet and Tchaikovsky’s fantasy overture.

The Vienna and Berlin Philharmonics, the Cleveland Orchestra, the San Francisco Symphony, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the London Philharmonia and the Leipzig Gewandhaus have all been invited to take part.

Included in the cast of renowned conductors are Pierre Boulez, Riccardo Chailly, Bernard Haitink, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Mariss Jansons, Simon Rattle, Michael Tislson Thomas and David Zinman.

Among the solo artists are violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter, mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter, and pianists Maurizio Pollini and András Schiff.

This year’s “artiste étoile” or star artist is French pianist Hélène Grimaud ,while the “composer-in-residence” is Switzerland’s Dieter Ammann. and agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR