Dear Friends of the Johannesburg International Mozart Festival,
"That's all folks!" - the famous catchphrase was first used at the end of a 1930 Warner Bros. Looney Tunes cartoon. Many characters have uttered the line since. Notable amongst these was Porky Pig. His stuttered "Th-th-th-that's all folks!" may be the best remembered version of the line. The Johannesburg International Mozart Festival, now taking place for the ninth time, has attracted a wealth of outstanding artists from South Africa and abroad. Proky Pig is not among them, but we are working on it!
This year's edition of the JIMF pays tribute to folkloristic influences in classical music and explores that delicate relationship between a chosen national, regional or local inspiration and a given compositional framework. We are delighted to present a wide variety of composers and styles from our Classical patron, via Schubert, de Falla, Bartok, Dvorak, Grieg, Vaughan Williams and Piazolla to German folk songs and a New Music Collaboration under the guidance of this year's Composer-in-Residence, Neo Muyanga, with a re-mixing of Western art music and African art music.
The diversity of the programme reflects once again that the Festival places great emphasis on interdisciplinary approaches, providing innovative intersections between "classical" repertoires, new music, improvisation, film, dance, theatre and contemporary South African art. The JIMF's educational initiatives, too, are going from strength to strength. Our five vocal scholars, who have been through the Musikhochschule in Cologne/Germany have recently enjoyed international competition successes and concert engagements. The 2017 Festival will, of course, see another edition of the annual vocal masterclass, along with a workshop with three young South African composers.
Between 27 January and 5 February, all our artists and ensembles will JoIn forces in concert, singing and playing the looney tunes.
May I wish you inspiring concerts and encounters!