Budapest Festival Orchestra Enchants Abu Dhabi at Arab World Premiere of Mozart’s ‘The Magic Flute’

Celebrated conductor, Iván Fischer, receives Abu Dhabi Festival Award for lifetime achievement before leading the Budapest Festival Orchestra & Choir in a sublime production of Mozart’s famous opera

(Abu Dhabi, UAE: 29 March 2015):  An Abu Dhabi audience was transported to a mythical land between the sun and the moon last night, as Iván Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra performed the Arab World Premiere of their production – Mozart’s revered opera, ‘The Magic Flute’.

Having captivated audiences of all ages for hundreds of years, ‘The Magic Flute’ is a spellbinding love story that takes the audience on a fantastical adventure, as Prince Tamino, protected from danger by the magic flute, sets out to rescue Pamina, daughter of the Queen of the Night.

In a production full of expression and charm, the revered Budapest Festival Orchestra – largely considered to be among the top ten orchestras in the world – performed a dramatic kaleidoscope of scores, highlighting the wit and musical genius of Mozart.

Directed by Iván Fischer and co-produced with the Budapest Palace of Arts, the Orchestra was joined on stage by a company of internationally renowned singers, including German bass, Andreas Bauer as Sarastro, German soprano, Mandy Fredrich as Queen of the Night, and French tenor, Stanislas de Barbeyrac as Tamino – a Japanese Prince.


The concert was preceded by a talk where Stefan Englert, Executive Director, Budapest Festival Orchestra spoke about the evening’s programme and took questions from the audience.


Prior to the performance, Iván Fischer, who founded the Budapest Festival Orchestra over thirty years ago, received the 2015 Abu Dhabi Festival Award from Festival President and Patron, H.E. Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development. Given each year at the Festival in association with Chopard, the Award recognises individuals for their outstanding lifetime contributions to arts and culture.

Mr Fischer, who is currently the Music Director of the Konzerthaus and the Konzerthausorchester in Berlin, is renowned for his reputation as one of the world’s most visionary and successful orchestra leaders. Both in Berlin and Budapest he has developed and introduced new types of concerts, “cocoa-concerts” for young children, “surprise” concerts where the programme is announced from the stage, “public dress rehearsals” where he talks to the audience, open-air concerts attracting tens of thousands of people and “staged concerts” combining concert and theatre.

A second performance of Mozart’s The Magic Flute Opera will take place at Emirates Palace on March 30. Closing the Abu Dhabi Festival 2015 on April 2, American-Lebanese singer Mayssa Karaa makes her international debut at the Festival with ‘When Music Matters.’

Further information on admission, schedules, venues and upcoming performances can be found on the Festival website:

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