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Romanian Musicians' Association of Performers' Creation announces the 22nd edition of the ICon Arts Transylvania Festival

Romanian Musicians’ Association of Performers’ Creation (UCIMR) announces the 22nd edition of the ICon Arts Transylvania Festival, one of the most enduring festivals dedicated to classical music, jazz, and the most effervescent creations in the field of contemporary arts. For 22 days, this year’s ICon Arts edition aims to bring together over 120 participants in the heart of Transylvania, where they will be inspired by the remnants of local cultural heritage.

From 20 July to 11 August 2024, villages and cities in Transylvania (Agnita, Avrig, Biertan, Brașov, Copșa Mare, Cund, Daneș, Dealu Frumos, Mediaș, Moșna, Richiș, Rusești, Sibiu) will host exceptional musical events, such as classical, contemporary, and jazz concerts, interdisciplinary artistic residencies, and masterclasses for performers. This year’s edition of the ICon Arts Festival proposes an eclectic, multidisciplinary, and multicultural program, where the virtuosity of music intertwines with the picturesque atmosphere of Transylvanian villages and cities and the tasting of traditional cuisine, to the delight of the audience.

“The 22nd edition of ICon Arts brings a new perspective to the festival, constantly oriented towards interdisciplinary collaboration. Music is the central element that connects the local community in surprising ways. With a commitment to offering the audience a captivating journey through sounds and unique experiences, the festival explores new artistic territories, combining classical music with contemporary elements, interweaving epochs and artistic styles, all unfolded in unique locations full of history. This year, we add a new location to the festival map: Agnita, from Sibiu County, but we are also returning to Brașov, with an extended program.” – Sebastian Gheorghiu, Cultural Manager and Member of the UCIMR Executive Board.

ICon Arts Transylvania Academy

Within the project, two sessions of the ICon Arts Academy will be held, dedicated to students and pupils wishing to polish their technique in composition, solo performance, and chamber music, under the guidance of renowned mentors from the musical world. For 9 days, the youth will participate in masterclasses on violin, singing, cello, double bass, guitar, percussion, and flute, led by renowned teachers from Romania, Hungary, the United Kingdom, or Japan.

From 20 to 28 July, the masterclasses will be led by Remus Azoiței (violin), Veronica Anușca and Cristian Hodrea (singing), Laszlo Fenyo (cello), Marc Dorin (double bass), Costin Soare and Dragoș Ilie (guitar), and Alexandru Anastasiu (percussion).

From 28 July to 5 August, the masterclasses will be led by Ladislau Csendes (violin), Elena Moșuc and Rareș Zaharia (singing), Andrei Ioniță (cello), Karen Jones (flute), Kuniko Kato (percussion), and Ella Bokor (minicellos – a cello masterclass for children). A novelty is the extension of the ICon Arts Academy to the city of Brașov, where the piano masterclass led by Horia Mihail returns, but for the first time, a singing masterclass and a jazz artistic residency will also take place, from 4 to 11 August.

ICon Arts Transylvania Residencies

The ICon Arts artistic residencies offer composers and performers from various countries the opportunity to spend 1-2 weeks in Biertan to develop musical or interpretative creations under the coordination of reputed artists. This year, the residency program hosts the ComPerformer project co-financed by The Administration of the National Cultural Fund (AFCN), where selected musicians will work under the mentorship of violinist Remus Azoiței (Romania/United Kingdom), the RTE ConTempo Quartet (Romania/Ireland), and composer Sebastian Androne Nakanishi (Romania/Switzerland). Also, within the ComPerformer project, a documentary photography residency by Mihai Benea starts in Biertan, which will then continue in Shkoder, Albania. The jazz residency in Brașov is organized in partnership with Dublin City University and will include musicians from Romania and Ireland, under the coordination of Romanian guitarist Ciprian Pop.

ICon Arts Festival

The efforts of young musicians throughout the training programs culminate in concerts and recitals scheduled for July and August, in cult edifices, institutions, and private properties eager to host art. Besides the masterclasses participants, the events within the ICon Arts Festival will also gather the Academy’s masterclass mentors and new guests of this edition, who will perform in Sibiu and Brașov counties. Additionally, the city of Agnita in Sibiu county is added to the map of locations hosting ICon Arts concerts.

Enrolments for the ICon Arts Academy can be made on the official website of the festival by booking one of the two available packages by 15 June 2024, priced at 1,000 lei and 3,000 lei respectively. The first package includes access to training sessions, while the latter also offers accommodation with two meals. In addition to the ICon Arts Festival, this year, Romanian Musicians’ Association of Performers’ Creation (UCIMR) is organising its flagship events with tradition such as CellEast, The Jazz Cave, the National Day of Romania concerts, and the New Year’s in Sibiu, as well as the new project MuziColine. Further details can be found on the ICon Arts and UCIMR websites.

About Romanian Musicians’ Association of Performers’ Creation

Founded in 1995, at the initiative of the lead violist of the Bucharest Philharmonic, Ștefan Gheorghiu, the Romanian Musicians’ Association of Performers’ Creation is a non-profit public utility organisation that has been contributing to the development and dissemination of classical music both nationally and internationally for nearly three decades. Romanian Musicians’ Association of Performers’ Creation supports the performing arts, from soloists, choir members, and instrumentalists to dancers and ballet dancers, by initiating and implementing cultural projects designed to facilitate the exchange of experience and promote artists in as diverse environments as possible. Romanian Musicians’ Association of Performers’ Creation’s mission is to develop the Romanian cultural landscape by promoting authentic artistic values. The association creates opportunities for young artists, but also supports the activities of retired artists.