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The Cartagena Music Festival returns in January, after the pandemic. Photo: Cartagena Music Festival
The Cartagena Music Festival returns in January 2022. Photo: Cartagena Music Festival

The Cartagena Music Festival returns

The sixteenth edition of the Festival, the most important classical music festival in Latin America, will be held from Jan. 4 to 10, 2022. 

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2022 will open once again with the sounds of classical music. The Cartagena Music Festival is an institution in the city. The event that went on a year hiatus returns to bring together the best performers of classical music, and is the first in a series that occupies the first quarter of the year and turns the city into the epicenter of the continent's culture. 

Like the other cultural events at the beginning of the year — Hay Festival and International Film Festival — the Music Festival was suspended in 2021 due to the pandemic, but held by alternative means in June. 

Entitled "The Color of Sound," attendees will be able to enjoy a more intimate facet of classical music from Jan. 4 to 10, with the walled city as a backdrop. The so-called chamber works were born in European homes as a relaxed but elegant way of listening to music. Almost immediately, the great composers became interested in the repertoire and enriched it with the creation of trios, quartets, and quintets featuring instruments such as the violin and piano.

Although the most important reference point of chamber music is the string quartet — made up of two violins, a viola and a cello — "The Color of Sound" will also include trios, quintets, and sextets. It will feature great performers of these instruments, including six string quartets and eight pianists.

The run of show will focus on 19th century works and will be divided by country. The first two days will be devoted to Austrian and German music (Mendelssohn, Schubert, Brahms). Subsequently, listeners will come into contact with the great works written in France (Fauré, Debussy, Franck), Italy (Rossini, Donizetti, Ponchielli), Russia (Glinka, Tchaikovsky, Borodin), and Eastern Europe (Dvorak and Smetana). Finally, there will be a day dedicated to works written in Colombia.

Many music analysts have equated the sound of each instrument to a color. Hence, the title of all the concerts in 2022. In addition to the color of the fretted strings and piano, the composers played to include the voices of instruments, such as the flute, oboe, horn, and clarinet.

The festival takes place in the city's most important venues, such as the Adolfo Mejía Theater and the Convention Center, but its free outdoor concerts are also famous, as well as the conferences and the academic agenda. This year, in addition, all attendees must show their COVID-19 vaccination cards for admission. 

All the details for festival, programming, and box office can be found on the official website www.cartagenamusicfestival.com.

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