San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Classical music festival draws international stars

Internationally acclaimed performers will be converging on Costa Rica for a month of classical music this August as part of the XXI Credomatic Music Festival. Eleven different traditional, classical and contemporary acts from Europe, the Americas, and Asia will be taking part in the festival that will take place at venues throughout the country from Aug. 6-21.

The Camerata Romeu of Cuba, the Novus Quartet of South Korea, From Jerusalem to Cordoba of France, Revel from the United States as well as many other internationally renowned classical performers will be featured during the festival. In addition to international groups, the Cartago Symphony Orchestra will also be participating.

The festival will feature performances throughout the country, from the National Theater in San José to Earth University in Guápiles. In addition, some of the country’s most spectacular, scenic resorts will play host to the musical extravaganza.  In total, there will be 27 venues for the festival.

Jordi Antich, director of the festival, said this year, organizers will be making a special effort to ensure the festival reaches out to as many people as possible from all walks of life.

“We want to make this year’s event more accessible than ever,” he said, adding that musicians come here to play for all of the people of Costa Rica and not just for those in San José.

In addition to expanding the number and accessibility of venues, organizers announced that this year there will be a much wider variety of traditional and folk music.

Credomatic Music Festival 2

French Duo “From Jerusalem to Cordoba.” Courtesy of Credomatic.

Catherine Braslavsky, who is coming with From Jerusalem to Cordoba, sings a wide variety of genres from Medieval European to Mediterranean and Indian music.

Camerata Romeu consists entirely of women and will be performing orchestral music with a Cuban flare. The group was the first female orchestra in Latin America and will be playing a number of unique compositions from their perspective on Cuba.

“It is the only orchestra of women that exists in Latin America,” Antich said.

The Novus Quartet is a young group of performers who have achieved international recognition for their elegant technique and new way of playing traditional music. The group proved its ability and showed potential when they won the prestigious International Contest of Music of Osaka in 2008, the first time the competition was won by a group of Koreans.

Korean pianist Kim Tae Hyung earned his international acclaim as a child. Since then, the young pianist has spent his time traveling across Asia and Europe performing classical and original compositions.

“They are musicians of the highest level and have won contests throughout the world,” Antich said. 

Duet Revel, from the U.S., consists of pianist Carla McElhaney and cellist Joel Becktell. Both performers have played in numerous orchestras throughout North America and will play a large selection of music, representing today’s classical scene in their home country.

Over the last 20 years, music festival organizers have helped to put on more than 1,000 concerts, featuring more than 700 artists.

“We want to break the barriers open for classical music in this country,” Antich said. “We want to redefine how people interpret classical music.”

For a complete schedule with venue information, concert dates and times, see the calendar section.

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