It is an immense gift and joy that the international summer school of early music in Valtice is entering its 31st year. It has always searched for period ideals of music interpretation that inevitably include both craftsmanship and a set of rules to be mastered. However, deep down we sense that the “best” musical interpretation is one marked by extraordinary musicality and the ability to appeal to the listeners’ emotions and provide them with deep musical experience. The 20th century made a mistake of falling for technocratic prejudice, starting to interpret compositions (not only early ones) “exactly as is written in the notes”. Those who break this rule run the risk of being labelled naive or lacking in artistic skill. There is no greater fallacy! With great enthusiasm, the summer school in Valtice offers its participants insights into the “invisible” aspects hidden behind notation. Interpretation of baroque music also involves what is called rubato or a free style – variations in rhythm similar to changes in human pulse and mood when we breathe, feel, experience…

As in previous years, there is a broad offer of classes led by excellent teachers. Among those who will appear in Valtice for the first time is an amazing baritone Tomáš Král who will come from Berlin. Jiří Tarantík will be in charge of the French horn class as well as the brass ensemble (for little and big ones). The music improvisation class will be for the first time led by the lutist  Jan Čižmář. Special attention will be paid to the music of the Renaissance and the late Middle Ages which has so far stayed in the shadow of the prevailing baroque classes – the class of Corina Marti and special Musicology Seminar should improve the balance. Last but not least, a musician and stage designer Marie Masha Černíková is going to work with our teenage participants. As you can see, there is again a lot to look forward to!


Marek Štryncl

Artistic director