September is always intense in Besançon thanks to the Festival, but the odd years are even richer, with this year the 56th International Competition of Young Conductors, masterfully closing this 72nd edition.

Before, more than fifty concerts are proposed, in Besançon but also in Dole, Vesoul, and an expected return to Belfort and Lons-le-Saunier.
Russian music will be the theme of the Festival, with masterpieces of Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Rachmaninov, Shostakovich, and the invitation of the prestigious Russian National Orchestra.
The musical event is still focused on symphonic music, with French and European ensembles, not forgetting early music, vocal, great soloists, and a young audience show.
The repertoire ranges from baroque music (Monteverdi‘s Vespers) to contemporary music (end of the residence of Eric Tanguy with two world premieres), with many iconic works: Mass in C by Mozart, Schumann’s Rhenish Symphony, the 3rd symphony of Copland, Bartók’s Concerto for orchestra
The chamber music is very present thanks to the nine after-works: an hour of music at a single price of 6 €, with a large place for young talents.
World music remains strong, from Balkans to Andalusia, from the Far East to the Mediterranean basin, headlined by Goran Bregović.
Finally, the Pianos-bar will host eight after-jazz evenings to end the musical days of the festival audience…

Brochure of the 72nd edition
2019 Press Kit
2019 Complete review (French)
2019 Photo & video gallery

First review

Artistic review

Ending up with the Final of the 56th International Competition for Young Conductors on Saturday 21st of September, the 72nd edition of the Festival offered 56 concerts of more than 1000 artists from France and Europe, during 15 days.

The symphonic evenings are part of the highlights of the Festival, espacially the concerts of the Russian National Orchestra, Deutsche Radio Philharmonie or Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio-France.
About the 56th International Competition for Young Conductors, the jury and its chairman Yan Pascal Tortelier chose Nodoka Okisawa (Japan, 32) as the laureate of the Grand Prix.
The vocal ensemble La Tempête and its rendition of Monteverdi’s Vespers is another high point of the 72th Festival.
Among the soloists, there were the pianists Nikolai Lugansky, Bertrand Chamayou (at the Théâtre of Lons-le-Saunier), Benjamin Grosvenor and Simon Ghraichy; and the violinists Alexandra Conunova, Alexandra Soumm and Nicolas Dautricourt.
The world music programme has also been a great success, such as Goran Bregović’s concert in Vesoul, not to mention the after-jazz nights of the Pianos-bar.
Set up for the first time, the afterworks (concerts in short format at 6 PM) have had a different attendance depending on the concerts but the format has been installed and will be renewed for the next edition.

Russian National Orchestra ©Yves Petit

Some figures

• Attendance is higher than in 2017 (last year with Competition)

spectators on charged concerts
spectators on free concerts
on the open-air opening concert with the Orchestre Victor Hugo Franche-Comté

• In 2019, the budget of the Festival is around

million euros

The 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.