Theatre under the Stars in Cathedral Square
Now in its 89th year, the Szeged Open-Air Festival offers an unparalleled diversity of genres, even when compared to theatre festivals across Europe. Fans of opera, operetta, musicals, plays and symphonic music will all find their favourite form of entertainment in the programme. Like in previous years, the 2020 season will welcome lovers of summer theatre with a true cavalcade of stars and incredible productions.
More than 30 years after receiving its Hungarian premiere, the global smash hit musical Jesus Christ Superstar is returning to the same venue where it was first shown here. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s magical rock opera, one of the biggest successes in Broadway history, was a major milestone in the history of the Szeged Open-Air Festival as well, since this is when it headed down the path of becoming a key venue for performances of musical theatre in Hungary. The quality of the musical is guaranteed to be seen by the audience as a production of Madách Theater.
The Shakespeare comedy has enjoyed tremendous popularity Szeged for years, guaranteeing forgettable summer evenings. This time the festival will feature one of the most popular works of the English master. On two nights, the audience will get to enjoy the romantic comedy Much Ado About Nothing.
The Sister Act was made from the iconic comedy of the 90s was loved by the audience of Szeged for two years and will return in 2020. Just like it did in 2018, this production flavoured with exhilarating disco and gospel tunes is guaranteed to conquer the Szeged nights, just as it won over millions of viewers in the West End and Broadway with its rich humour and feeling.
The Szeged Open-Air Festival’s programme for 2020 will conclude with a truly legendary musical. The combination of the moving Romeo and Juliet story, a gripping gang war, Latin temperaments and Leonard Bernstein’s enchanting music is guaranteed to captivate everyone in the audience. West Side Story was first presented on Dóm Square – as the festival’s first musical – in 1965. Taking place in the New York City of the 1950s, the story pits two rival gangs of different ethnic backgrounds – the Jets and the Sharks – against each other as Tony and the Puerto Rican Maria fall in love.
The Szeged Open-Air Festival’s colourful palette would not be complete without a symphonic orchestral concert: a tradition that goes back 16 years, the Gift Concert held on the open-air stage each year is a special and festive occasion that allows 4,000 people to experience the joys of classical music together. The concerts feature both classical and contemporary works by composers from Hungary and elsewhere.
Opening the season at the Újszeged Open-Air Stage will be an opera, the Agrippina by Georg Friedrich Händel. This unique work, one which is not utterly lacking in humour, presents the twists and turns of the story of the emperor Nero and his mother, Agrippina. The piece presents an interesting challenge for both the creative team and the artists performing it.
Visitors to the Újszeged Open-Air Stage have a remarkable crime play in store for them: Graham Linehan’s The Ladykillers has been cracking up audiences with its humour for more than half a century.
For many years, Szeged Open-Air Festival has been playing Moliere comedy with tremendous success this is why returning in 2020 one of the French author’s most popular comedy, The Bourgeois Gentleman. The work draws its humour primarily from the extent to which others attempt to take advantage of the central character’s gullibility and ignorance. Permeating this production at the Újszeged Open-Air Stage are the sparkling wit of Lajos Parti Nagy’s wordplay, with the songs composed by a remarkable figure of world music: Edina “Mókus” Szirtes.
Also returning to the Újszeged Open-Air Stage for two nights in 2020 is the hugely acclaimed family fairy tale ballet from last year: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. With all the beauty and grace of classical ballet, this piece whisks young and old alike to a true world of wonder. This spectacular Hungarian piece by choreographer Gyula Harangozó Jr and composer Tibor Kocsák has made a splash abroad to, with Australian critics comparing the production to the works of Andrew Lloyd Webber.Megosztom
2019. April 01.