After a successful “double anniversary” edition (70th Festival and 55th Competition), in 2017, the 71st edition of the Besançon Franche-Comté International Music Festival takes place from September 7 to 16, 2018 with a rich and eclectic program of more than thirty concerts !

The Festival begins its eighth decade with a rich and varied program of more than thirty concerts in Besançon but also in Dole, Audincourt and Luxeuil-les-Bains. The symphonic repertoire remains at the heart of the program with international guest performances including Prague Philharmonia, Lausanne Chamber Orchestra and the prestigious Orchestre National de France!
French music will be very present, in particular echoing the centenary Debussy, but also with works by Dukas, Ravel, Saint-Saens, Lalo, Berlioz, and of course Eric Tanguy, resident for two years at the Festival.
Several musical escapades will take us to Prague (Dvořák, Smetana), eternal Russia (Vespers of Rachmaninov), baroque music (Haendel) … to the world music and jazz at the piano bar.The young audience will not be forgotten with a “special family” concert-illustrated around the Stravinsky Soldier’s Story, not forgetting a selection of concerts adapted to children over 7, by their program and their duration.
Finally, we will be pleased to welcome the sound and visual installation Immersion symphonique, as well as the unusual projects Ørkestra # 2 and Orpheus XXI – opus 2.

Brochure of the 71st edition
Press kit 2018
Complete review 2018
Picture gallery of the 2018 edition

The after-jazz from the Pianos-bar

Anastaz © Yves Petit

From Wednesday to Saturday evenings, from 9 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., the Pianos-Bar at the Kursaal invites musicians from the regional jazz scene. Whether during an interlude or for the evening, the ‘‘classic’’ public mingles with jazz fans to enjoy the music as well as the bar and snacks area open on the night of concerts from 6 p.m.

All events scheduled at the Pianos-bar are open access, subject to availability.

in partnership with Brasserie Granvelle.

First review

Artistic review

The program has largely kept its promises, first and foremost with the symphonic concerts and in particular the Orchestre National de France in a full Ledoux Theater, the Prague Philharmonia and the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra at the Grand Kursaal, at the end of this edition. Among the soloists who have made great impression on the public are pianists François Dumont (Dole Commandery), Bertrand Chamayou and Jean-Marc Luisada; the violinist Alexandra Conunova in her virtuoso rendition of Ravel’s Gypsy, not to mention – in very different styles – the two cellists Lev Sivkov and Edgar Moreau. The vocal ensemble Orlando Freiburg has played Haendel, while the company La Tempête produced two unforgettable concerts with the Vespers of Rachmaninov (at Luxeuil-les-Bains and the next day in Besançon). The world music programme has also been a great success, with a special favorite for Las Hermanas Carroni and the revival of the Orpheus XXI project, not to mention the after-jazz nights of the Pianos-bar and the musical and interactive installation “Immersion symphonique”.

Orchestre National de France and Bertrand Chamayou © Yves Petit

Some key figures

Attendance is stable compared to 2016

spectators on charged concerts
spectators on free concerts
on the open-air opening concert with the Orchestre d’harmonie de la Garde Républicaine

In 2018, the budget of the Festival exceeds

million euros

The new president of the Festival, Myriam Grandmottet, and the director Jean-Michel Mathé, thank the team of five permanent, joined by fifteen intermittent or temporary employees and fifty volunteers, whose work and commitment have been particularly appreciated by the public and artists.