About the Rheingau Music Festival
31. Rheingau Musik Festival from 23 June - 1st September 2018
Concert enjoyment amidst picturesque surroundings
In the summer, when the Rheingau reveals itself in its most luxuriant magnificence, music echoes between the serried ranks of ripening vines and the entire region constitutes a splendorus platform for aural delights of global stature. Unique cultural monuments are transformed into temples to the muses: Kloster Eberbach, Schloss Johannisberg, Kurhaus Wiesbaden or picturesque wine cellars. The 31st Rheingau Musik Festival will take place from June 23rd to September 1st 2018 and will showcase about 160 events.
Festival summer 2018
The Rheingau Music Festival is one of Europe's largest music festivals and hosts over 170 concerts in the entire region from Frankfurt via Wiesbaden to the Middle Rhine Valley every year. Unique cultural monuments such as Kloster Eberbach, Schloss Johannisberg, Schloss Vollrads and the Kurhaus Wiesbaden as well as cozy wineries are transformed into concert stages for stars of the international music scene, from classical to jazz to cabaret and world music.
The guiding idea of 2018 is "friendship". With this we turn to a core idea of the Rheingau Music Festival - to gather musical companions and friends in the Rheingau. In 2018 Leonard Bernstein would celebrate his 100th birthday. I was friends with the legendary American composer and conductor until his death. The round day of remembrance is the occasion for a musical portrait in which the greatest works of the gifted artist are played and Bernstein's life and work are examined in detail. On the 100th anniversary of the death of Claude Debussy we draw in the second composer focus lines of the Impressionist tone poet to older and contemporary colleagues. The projects of our focus artists revolve around the guiding idea of "friendship": the soprano Annette Dasch, the oboist Albrecht Mayer, and the composer and violist Brett Dean bring friendly musicians to the Rheingau in order to realize these unique musical projects. In addition, we present five top-class piano trios in "Fokus Jazz". We continue the series "Expedition Sound", in which we bring together musical border crossers, as well as the series "Next Generation", in which young, upcoming artists and ensembles enter the big stage.
Our director Michael Herrmann in the video for the festival season 2018.
The festival trailer gives an impression of the "summer full of music"
How it all began ...
Since 1987, the Rheingau Music Festival has been attracting delighted audiences to the region between Frankfurt, Wiesbaden and Lorch.
It was back in the early 1970s, when he was himself singing in choral concerts at Eberbach Monastery, that Michael Herrmann, the Artistic Director of the Rheingau Music Festival, conceived the vision of a festival in his home region. Following a trial run in the summer of 1987 with two concerts in Eberbach Monastery, Michael Herrmann got together with some of his friends and some music aficionados on 23 November 1987 at the Eagle Tower in Rüdesheim to set up the “Rheingau Musik Festival e.V.”: the Rheingau Music Festival was born. Its first season kicked off in 1988, with 19 events at a total of five different venues. The huge success that the festival achieved right from the start meant rapid expansion – the original 19 concerts became 50, then 100 or more. Nowadays, every summer the Rheingau Music Festival’s programme features almost 150 concerts at more than 40 different venues.
The broad spectrum of the concert programme focuses primarily on classical music, but also extends to jazz and cabaret. The artistic excellence of all the concerts is the salient feature they all share.
The idea's father
Michael Herrmann was born in Wiesbaden in 1944, and is a bookseller by profession. Convinced of the unique opportunities and stunning venues offered by his home region, he launched the Rheingau Music Festival in 1987. Even in his youth, Michael Herrmann was driven by his deep love of music and a fierce determination to bring its pleasures to a wider audience. Besides his own private training as a singer, it was primarily his close ties and collaborative bonding with performers like Justus Frantz or Leonard Bernstein that proved crucial in his decision to devote himself to music management. For his services to art and culture, Michael Herrmann was awarded the Hessian Order of Merit in 1997, the Goethe Plaque of the State of Hesse in 2002 an 2014 the Federal Cross of Merit first class.
Since 1998 Michael Herrmann belongs to the managing committee of the Association Européenne des Festivals in Geneva. He is also a member of the committee of the „Verband der Deutschen Konzertdirektionen“ in Munich. In September 2002, Herrmann recieved the Goethe-medal of Hessen. In February 2004 he established the Rheingau Musik Festival Foundation, which shall guarantee the continuity of the festival. Michael Herrmann is since 2005 Vice President of the "Association Européenne des Festivals". Since 2008 he is managing partner of the Frankfurter Konzertdirektion Pro Arte.