Friday, 22 July 2011

Périgord - Annual Baroque Music Festival


Music has no boundaries,
but it can express itself differently across borders.

Welcome to one of the biggest Baroque Festivals,
taking place every July in the well renowned region of Aquitaine, the Périgord.
A Festival, born with the third millenium, ITINERAIRE BAROQUE 
celebrate its 10th Anniversary this year.

full info - presentation and programmation:


Dear Friends,

This 2011 Itineraire Baroque season is very close to my heart
as it is our 10th anniversary.  Ten years already of an adventure
which from the beginning we have tried to make outstanding, festive,
of high musical quality and firmly anchored in the Périgord which we love so much.

Itineraire Baroque would not be what it is today without the talent and 
generosity of Ton Koopmann, who for these ten years has devoted energy
and skill to make this annual rendez-vous a landmark in the festival world.
Nor would it be what it is without its partners and the whole festival team,
paid and unpaid, who have all worked unremittingly to produce
a special moment to suit all tastes.

Ton Koopman

As a worthy celebration of this anniversary we have made the
geographic nucleus of the festival the Verteillacois,
where it started, and a place beloved by Ton Koopman and us all.
And we have invited those groups and musicians who graced the
festival's great moments.
Fabio Bonizzoni and La Rizonanza,
the Classic Buskers,  Alfredo Bernardini and the Zefiro Ensemble,
the Egidius Quartet,  Fred Jacob. Sirocco, Vivante and others.

Finally, to close the festival,
Ton Koopman will direct the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir,
the Children's Choir Dordogne-Perigueux (with whom he has worked for the last 5 years)
and the soloists Johannette Zomer, Iestyn Davies and Benoit Arnould
in a semi-theatrical version of Purcell's King Arthur.
The actress Dominique Sanda adds her lustre 
to this prestigious company in the role of narrator.

We look forward to meeting you all once again this summer
and wish you an excellent 2011 Itineraire Baroque.

by Robert-Nicolas HUET
President and Director of the Organizing Committee


This annual and unique Baroque Music Festival
is held in several of the old Romanesque churches in our area,
 the Verteillacois in the Périgord Blanc/Vert,
rotating which churches are used.
After a modest beginning, we can now celebrate our 10th Anniversary.
During these last 10 years our initially small concert series
grew to the varied ITINERAIRE BAROQUE it is today.
As a member of the committee my responsibility 
is to create the floral decoration for the churches.
For first-time visitors this musical circuit offers an opportunity to traverse
a country-side full of history and to succumb to the charm 
of these ancient churches scattered through the hills and vales.
For the others, the faithful concert goers, they will renew with joy,
the time of an evening, a day or a week-end, the formula, at once simple and refined,
based on baroque music and medieval religious architecture,
which will waft them to another dimension.

Eglise Saint-Cybard, Cercles

This years venues are:

Abbaye de Brantome - Ouverture (Thursday)

Village et Abbatiale de Cercles, Eglise Saint-Cybard (Friday and Suturday):
Mini Classic: Bach, Offenbach, Mozart, Rossini, Ravel, Bizet, Tchaikovsky
Eglise de Bourg-des-Maisons:
Pieces de Théorbe de ROBERT DE VISEE en sol et mi mineur
Eglise de Coutures:
Eglise de Saint-Paul-Lizonne
Eglise de Saint-Martial-Viveyrol:
Eglise de Cherval:
Concert de Cloture - Dimanche 31 Juillet:
La Fabrique de Saint-Astier
Opéra en version semi-théatrale de PURCELL


About Ton Koopman:

Ton Koopman was born in Zwolle in 1944, Netherlands
After a classical education he studied organ, harpsichord and musicology in Amsterdam
and was awarded the Prix d'Excellence for both instruments.
Almost from the beginning of his musical studies he was fascinated
by authentic instruments and a performance style based on sound scholarship.
Even before completing his studies he laid the foundations for a career 
as a conductor of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century music.
In 1969, at the age of 25, this fascination of the Baroque era led him 
to establish his first Baroque orchestra, and in 1979 he founded
the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra followed by the Amsterdam Baroque Choir in 1992.
Over the course of a forty-five-year career Ton Koopman has appeared 
at the most important concert halls and festivals of the five continents.
As an organist he has performed on the most prestigious historical instruments of Europe,
and as a harpsichord player and conductor he has been a regular guest
at venues which include the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam,
the Théatre des Champs-Elysées in Paris, the Philharmonie in Munich,
the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, the Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall in New York
and leading concert halls in Vienna, London, Berlin, Brussels, Madrid, Rome, Tokyo and Osaka....

Our dear friend Ton Koopman 
is also the artistic director of the Festival Itinéraire Baroque.


Here a few images from previous  years.....


 ...the piano tuner....

 ...just before the concert....'musicians-discussion?'

 ...before rehearsal....

2008 - Abbaye Brantome
...rehearsal for the opening concert

Tini Mathot-Koopmann and Ton Koopman...

...Klaus Mertens, Tenor

in 2006 ...rehearsal...

...the concert

There was no electricity at all in this church, dating back to the 11th century,
 I provided light with about 40 large candles!


Ribérac - Eglise Notre Dame

"As in other years, it gives me pleasure to draw attention to the willingness
of the organizers to anchor their festival in this region and particularly to their work
in offering pedagogic concerts to pupils of Ribérac College.
This initiative consolidates the policy of the Conseil Général's aim to democratic access to culture.
The musical road once again, and from all points of view,
heralds an important moment in the culture life of our Departement, the Dordogne."
Bernard CAZEAU
Sénateur de la Dordogne, President du Conseil général


I like to invite you all to accompany me
from church to church all next week,
as I share some of the history of this wonderful region.

to be continued.....


  1. Dear Karin,
    o yes please continue!

    I would like to sit in one {or two :-) } of these wonderful churches and listen to the music!

    Mein Chor hatte am Mittwoch ein a capella Konzert in einer uralten fränkischen Dorfkirche.

    Viele liebe Grüße in den Westen!

  2. What a wonderful event. We would love to attend! Hope you have a beautiful weekend!
    XO Angela and Renee

  3. Karin-
    Did you do all of the flowers as well as the candles?

    I bet the concerts are amazing!

  4. I am sure each concert is an amazing experience. I am looking forward to your posts of the history of the region. I would absolutely love to sit in one of the churches and listen to the exquisite music. Amazing!

  5. I can only imagine how it must be to sit in one of these ancient churches listening to music of this calibre - your candle-lit church especially! And what a privilege to have Ton Koopman as a friend. This post is showing a whole new dimension to your life in the Périgord ... thank you, I really enjoyed this and look forward to more.

    BEE X