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Zermatt Festival: Premiere performance of “Der Bergmensch“ (The Mountain Man)

For the first time, the Zermatt Festival is bringing a premiere performance to the Matterhorn with “Der Bergmensch” from the New York based composer and saxophonist Daniel Schnyder. The festival, featuring many musicians from the Berlin Philharmonic, takes place from the 31st August to the 16th September 2012.

82 chamber musicians will be playing in the village and in the Riffelalp Chapel at 2,222 metres above sea level during the Zermatt Festival. "As a Swiss exile, I often miss the mountains that had such a strong impression on my youth", writes the Swiss composer Daniel Schnyder in his programmatic text for the world premiere performance of "Der Bergmensch". While on a hike in Zermatt, he was amazed to come across the members of the Scharoun Ensembles Berlin, the musicians and members of the Berlin Philharmonic who have been enriching and shaping the Zermatt Festival in the autumn over the past eight years. Schnyder remarked that they had all become passionate mountain men, and enjoyed the beauty of the mountain environment on long walks every year as if for the first time. There is therefore “no small Alpine symphony” awaiting the festival visitors in the parish church of St. Mauritius on Saturday, 8th September. There will be no protagonist climbing a mountain summit. I would rather bring natural images to life musically, in the same way as pictures at an exhibition."

Festival start with the splendour of ancient Russian church music
To start the festival, the Grammy award-winning Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir will be singing Rachmaninoff’s Vespers Mass (All-Night Vigil) on the 31st August. Although already famous as a pianist, Rachmaninoff achieved a reputation as a great composer with this work in 1915.
 Mélodie Zhao, a pianist with Chinese roots born in Greyerz in the Canton of Fribourg, is a fresh young talent who also represents the face of a cosmopolitan, multicultural Switzerland. Her early virtuosity raises well-founded expectations that we are seeing the arrival of a great artist onto the world stage here.
On Sunday, Nurit Stark (violin) and Cédric Pescia (piano) will perform a concert on the Riffelalp, with works from Ludwig van Beethoven and Ferruccio Busoni.
Tickets are available by phone and online:

Ticket office
Zermatt Festival
Postfach 5
3920 Zermatt
Tel: +41 (0)27 967 30 88

Zermatt Tourismus | Tel +41 27 966 81 00 |