Events by Year

View events and performances that have taken place at the Al Bustan Festival.

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Themes & Dates
World Premières

Al Bustan Festival Themes and Dates

I 17 February – 3 April 1994 Love
II 22 February – 26 March 1995 Influences from East to West
III 21 February – 24 March 1996 The Russian Spirit
IV 19 February – 23 March 1997 Romantic Vienna
V 18 February – 22 March 1998 France
VI 17 February – 21 March 1999 Poland
VII 23 February – 26 March 2000 The Millennium – Rising Stars of the 21st Century
VIII 20 February – 25 March, 2001 From Venice to Amsterdam – A Musical Journey
IX 19 February – 24 March, 2002 Prague
X 18 February – 23 March, 2003 Festival 10-year Jubilee
XI 17 February – 21 March, 2004 Hungary
XII 15 February – 20 March, 2005 Music from the North
XIII 22 February – 26 March, 2006 Mozart
XIV 21 February – 25 March, 2007 Spain
XV 12 February – 17 March, 2008 Beyond Borders
XVI 18 February – 22 March, 2009 Music & Life
XVII 17 February – 21 March, 2010 Italy
XVIII 22 February – 27 March 2011 Along the Danube to the Black Sea
XIX 21 February – 25 March 2012 Music From Latin America
XX 19 February – 27 March 2013 20th Anniversary of Al Bustan Festival
XXI 19 February – 23 March 2014 Music & Nature
XXII 17 February – 22 March 2015 Inspiration
XXIII 16 February – 20 March 2016 Midwinter Night’s Dream
XXIV 15 February – 19 March 2017 Queens & Empresses of The Orient
XXV 13 February – 21 March 2018 Bach – 25 years
XXVI 12 February – 17 March 2019 Crescendo
XXVII 18 February – 22 March 2020 Ludwig
XXVIII 16 February – 13 March 2022 Reconnect

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Operas performed at the Al Bustan Festival

1 Queen of Spades, Tchaikovsky Helikon Opera 1996
2 Die Fledermaus, Strauss Helikon Opera 1997, 2004
3 Carmen, Bizet Helikon Opera 1998, 2007
4 Cosi fan tutte, Mozart Warsaw Chamber Opera 1999, 2006
5 Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Rossini Warsaw Chamber Opera 1999
6 Act III from Boris Godunov, Mussorgsky Helikon Opera 1999
7 Il Turco in Italia, Rossini Warsaw Chamber Opera 2000
8 The Magic Flute, Mozart Warsaw Chamber Opera 2000
9 Coffee Cantata, Bach Helikon Opera 2000
10 La Serva Padrona, Pergolesi Helikon Opera 2000
11 Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria, Monteverdi Warsaw Chamber Opera 2001
12 Le Nozze di Figaro, Mozart Warsaw Chamber Opera 2001
13 Don Giovanni, Mozart Warsaw Chamber Opera 2002
14 Don Pasquale, Donizetti Warsaw Chamber Opera 2003
15 Eugene Onegin, Tchaikovsky Helikon Opera 2003
16 Euridice, Peri Warsaw Chamber Opera 2004
17 L’Amour de Loin, Saariaho (concert performance) Young Janacek Orchestra – Choir of the Strasbourg Conservatory of Music 2005
18 Pierre le Grand, Grétry Helikon Opera 2005
19 Die Entfuhrung aus dem Serail, Mozart Warsaw Chamber Opera 2006
20 The Tsar’s Bride, Rimsky Korsakov Helikon Opera 2008
21 Les Dialogues des Carmelites Helikon Opera 2009
22 Il Barbiere Di Siviglia Teatro dell’ Opera Di Roma 2010
23 Mitridate. Re Di Ponto Tbilisi State Opera Chamber Orchestra 2011
24 Das Liebesverbot Helikon Opera 2013
25 The Nightingale Helikon Opera 2014
26 La Finta Giardiniera “The fake lady gardener” Helikon Opera 2014
27  Opera “NORMA” 2015
28 Otello Rossini & Otello Verdi 2016
29 Opera Medea (in concert, Italian version) 2017

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World Premières

The Al Bustan Festival has commissioned contemporary composers to create new works especially for it. Among these are:

1996 John Tavener’s Feast of Feasts. The World Première at the Festival was performed by the Yurlov State Choir in the ancient Grand Hall of Balamand Abbey in North Lebanon.
1999 Roxanna Panufnik composed Modlitwa (Prayer), a song without words which was performed by the Chilingirian Quartet in a World Première. Roxanna dedicated the piece to the Al Bustan Festival and the Première to the memory of her father, Andrzej Panufnik.
2000 Naji Hakim, the composer and organist, was commissioned to write a choral work for the Al Bustan Festival. The World Première of this piece, Children, was taken from Khalil Gibran’s Speak to us of Children from his book “The Prophet”. The work was performed by the Vox Nova Choir and the Concerto Copenhagen Orchestra in the Church of Maghdouche in Lebanon.
2013 Memory of a lost Chant – Zad Moultaka pays tribute to the universe of the Bushmen, an ancestral culture that was decimated by colonization.
2014 Khaled Mouzanar film scores performed for the first time in Al Bustan Festival accompanied by various musicians.

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Al Bustan Festival Lectures and Dates

1996 “De l’Icône à l’Art Moderne, les grandes étapes de la peinture russe” by Mahmoud Zibawi (LB) at Hotel Al Bustan
1997 “An evening with the Empress Elisabeth” by Dr Brigitte Hamann (AUT) at Hotel Al Bustan
1998 Marcel Landowski (FRA) at Hotel Al Bustan
1999 “Studying Chopin” by Jim Samson ( U.K. ) at Hotel Al Bustan
2004 “Franz Liszt” by Leslie Howard (AUS)at Sursock Museum
2006 “Mozart & The Orient” by Nadja Kayali (SYR/AUT ) at Villa Audi
2008 “The Power of Sound” by Iégor Reznikoff (FRA ) at Pierre Abou Khater Auditorium-USJ
2009 “Music and The Brain” by Kamal Chemali M.D.(LEB/USA ), Prisca Benoit (FRA), piano – Lecture-concert at West Hall, AUB .
2010 “Commedia dell’Arte” by Antonio Fava (ITA ) at the Italian Cultural Center
2011 “Floating Music – Along the Danube to the Black Sea” by Hubert Von Goisen (AUT) at West Hall, AUB
2012 “A Panorama of Mexican music of the XX & XXI Centuries” by Javier Alvarez at West Hall, AUB.
2013 “Remembering Ghassan” – By Roger Assaf at La Maison du Poète
“Verdi & Wagner”
by Peter Conrad at Crypt of St. Joseph Jesuit Church
2014 “Music et Impressionnisme” – By Joe Letayf at Salle Montaigne
2015 ” The Festival Lecture” – By Miguel Angel Estrella 
2016 Shakespear and Music” – By Prof. Julie Sanders
2017 Under the Spell of Magic: The Oriental Queen in Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade” – by Dr. Nasser Al Taee
2019 Vivaldi, Much more than the Four Seasons” – by Susan Orlando at Sursock Museum
2020 Let’s talk about Beethoven” – by Dr Georges Haddad
Behind the scenes of the 9 Symphonies” – by Mr Joe Letayf at Sursock Museum
Improvisation à deux voix” – by Dr Georges Haddad and Mr Joe Letayf
2022 Musique et Liberté – The Sound of Freedom” – by Dr Georges Haddad at Sursock Museum
Wadia Sabra, Composer of the Lebanese National Anthem” – by Zeina Saleh Kayali with the participation of Fady Jeanbart baritone at Sursock Museum
An informal talk with Glass Marcano” at Maison Dagher, Gemmayzeh

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 Al Bustan Festival Exhibitions and Dates

1995 Galerie Tanit. Michael Biberstein (CH) and Ian McKeever ( UK )
1996 “Couleurs d’ombre” by Mahmoud Zibawi (LB)
1997 An exhibition of early photographs (Beit mery, Broumana and their surroundings)
1998 “Archaic procession” by Nadim Karam (LB)
“Les photographes Français au Liban” – Private collection of Fouad Debbas
1999 Hussein Madi (LB)
“Polish Posters Power” provided by the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs
2000 “Paintings & drawings” by Nadim Karam (LB)
2001 Rana Raouda (LB)
Jean Paul Guiragossian (LB)
Nadia Saikali (LB)
Michel Harmouche (LB)
2003 Wajih Nahle (LB)
“A Family of artists” by Nahlé Family: Gina, Wahid, Lina, Joumana and Marwan Nahle
2004 Hussein Madi (LB)
2005 Photographs from ” The Royal Swedish Opera & Ballet” by Mats Bäcker (SE)
2006 “Mozart forever! 1756-2006” by Jiri Votruba (CZ)
2007 “The birds of Paradise”” by Nadim Karam (LB)
2008 Jean Detheux (BE)
2009 Michal Cihlar (CZ)
“photo exhibition.”Joseph Haydn”, “ by Manfred Horvath
2010 “Urban Stories” byNadim Karam (LB)
2011 Raouf Rifai (LB)
2011 Jiti Votruba (CZ)
2012 Thaer Maarouf (SY)
2013 “Intolérance” by Ghassan Ghazal (LB)
2014 “Odditorium” by Nabil Helou (LB)
2015 Laudy Abillamaa (LB)
2016 Jean-Marc Nahas (LB)
2017 Jad El Khoury (LB)
2018 Sara Abou Mrad (LB)
2019 Saad Yagan (SY)