Johannesburg International Mozart Festival
The Johannesburg International Mozart Festival was founded in 2006 in celebration of Mozart's 250th birthday, and because Johannesburg seemed to be lacking classically-focused events in both number and variety, as well as exposure to high-quality international artists.
Mozart seemed to be an easy jumping off-point, as his music has proved timelessly popular. But a constant all-Mozart focus seemed too narrow, so instead we always took an element from Mozart’s work and based each Festival around that. Previous themes include ‘Masquerade’, as masks and false identity feature heavily in Mozart’s work; ‘Se vuol ballare’, translating literally as ‘if you want to dance’ – dance being another very strong feature of Mozart’s work; and 2017's ‘That’s All Folk(s)!’ relating to the ever-present folk themes that appear throughout his pieces.
The Festival has grown in scope, and aside from the chamber music recitals and symphony concerts that made up the original format, we now also include new music, dance, art, and film, as well as very strong education and development aspects. Each Festival features a great mix of local and international artists, and is capably led by Directors Florian Uhlig and Richard Cock.
The Festival takes place over 10 days at the beginning of the year, beginning on Mozart's birthday on the 27th of January each year.