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24 July – 30 August

In 1992, Saint François d’Assise by Olivier Messiaen celebrated its first performance under Esa-Pekka Salonen as conductor and Peter Sellars as director. Although the production aroused controversy at the time, it went down in the history of critical reception as one of the most important productions and to the present day has always stood for the Festival’s programmatic new start.

A revival of production followed in 1998 under Kent Nagano’s baton. Dawn Upshaw again gave her brilliant interpretation as the Angel in the imposing set constructed by George Tsypin.

Angela Denoke made her international breakthrough in Janáček’s Káťa Kabanová (Sylvain Cambreling/Christoph Marthaler). Gwyneth Jones and Catherine Malfitano joined forces as the prominent female duo in Kurt Weill’s Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny/Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny (Dennis Russell Davies/Peter ­Zadek). Anna Netrebko debuted as Flower Maiden in Parsifal.

Ivan Nagel was now head of drama; the focus being in 1998 on ‘Guest Writer’ Elfriede Jelinek, whose Robert Walser play er nicht als er/He not Himself had its world première ­directed by Jossi Wieler.