Buenos Aires Classical Music - Mozarteum Argentino
In my novel, An Argentine in my Kitchen, Catherine does not expect to find a deep classical musical culture in Buenos Aires.
But the longer she spends in the city, the more she discovers its amazing cultural offering. One of the groups that organises classical music concerts is Mozarteum Argentino.
History of Mozarteum Argentino
In 1952 a group of musicians met with the Salzburg Mozarteum to propose the founding of Mozarteum Argentino. The aim of this group would be to organise concerts of Mozart's lesser known compositions in Argentina, to run conferences related to Mozart's work, and to publish music scores.
After a series of successful private events, the group began to offer public concerts in 1956, using various museum spaces in Buenos Aires. The concerts were enthusiastically received by the public. The Mozarteum is now recognised internationally, and runs various musical events - no longer only Mozart-related.
Free Conciertos de mediodia or 'Midday Concerts'
A very popular series of free concerts takes place about two or three times a month during the season, at lunchtime on Wednesdays, in the main cultural centre of Buenos Aires. These Mozarteum concerts have been running for over fifty years, and have become a fixture of the Buenos Aires cultural scene. As with all concerts, they are currently cancelled due to the coronavirus precautionary measures.
Concerts in the Provinces
In 1978 the Mozarteum extended its activity to the provinces of Argentina, and to date has organised over 2,500 concerts attracting audiences totalling 1,000,000. Master classes, seminars and workshops are also held.
Concerts in the Teatro Colon
The Mozarteum organises a series of concerts in the Teatro Colón. The 2020 season includes the following three concerts (just to name a few).
Daniil Trifonov, the Russian pianist and composer described by The Times as 'without question the most astounding pianist of our age.'
Wiener Akademie with Martin Haselböck conductor, and Theodora Raftis soprano
The Chamber Orchestra of Amsterdam's Concertgebouw, with Niek Baar as violinist
Music for young people
The Mozarteum provides low-cost student tickets for the concert season in the Teatro Colón. It provides scholarships, both local and international, for promising young Argentine musicians. And, to promote Argentine artists internationally, it has a workshop in Paris that can be used as a temporary residence for musicians, artists and writers so that they can hold exhibitions, give concerts and seminars, and meet colleagues from around the world.
International orchestras, ballet companies and chamber music groups and soloists
Mozarteum Argentino has been able to attract orchestras such as the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, the NHK Symphony Orchestra of Tokyo, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the Paris Philharmonic Orchestra, Staatskapelle Berlin and the St Petersburg Philharmonic. Ballet companies have visited from USA, France, Russia, Germany and Japan, including the Ballet de Nancy with Rudolf Nureyev as soloist, and soloists of the Kirov Ballet. Chamber music groups and soloists have included the Academy of St.Martin in the Fields, the Juilliard String Quartet, Claudio Arrau, Kiri te Kanawa, Isaac Stern, Maxim Vengerov and many more.
And there is more about the cultural activity in Buenos Aires in my book, An Argentine in my Kitchen.