at the Pfingstfestival Schloss Brunegg!




Dear friends of chamber music, dear guests,


It may be a mere coincidence, but Johann Georg Forster, one of the first influential ethnologists, whose descendants settled in Aargau, Captain Cook – whom Forster accompanied on his second circumnavigation of the globe, about which he wrote his famous book A Voyage Round the World in His Britannic Majesty’s Sloop Resolution– and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, who travelled through Aargau on several occasions, were all alive at the same time. Theoretically, therefore, these three great travellers could have met at Brunegg Castle . . .


It was the vision of an encounter between these three charismatic, trailblazing individuals with links to Aargau, world literature and music that prompted us to choose TERRAE INCOGNITAE(Latin for ‘unknown worlds’) as the motto of this year’s festival. This motto contains a challenge: it takes great curiosity and courage to seek out the unknown and set off to discover new territories. Questioning, challenging and being challenged are clearly prerequisites, but they also lend meaning and a sense of purpose to such enterprises. At Whitsun 2019, this boundless urge to explore will reward us all with many enriching revelations and fabulous moments in Brunegg Castle.


Bach, Scarlatti, Haydn, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Strauss and Rachmaninoff, Ferroud, Penderecki, Gulda, Lavista, Semolini, Kapustin, Schnyder, Käser and a host of other composers: each and every one carries us off into thrilling – and in some cases completely unheard-of – musical worlds on the wings of ten world-class soloists and our two ‘artistes étoiles’ – the Dutch star violinist Rosanne Philippens and the Chinese American pianist Claire Huangci, winner of the 2018 Géza Anda piano competition. We have also been able to engage a Swiss Composer in Residence, the Zurich-born composer and vocal artist Mischa Käser, a man who not only beguiles audiences with his talents as a performer but also delves into questions of discovery in his virtuoso and many-layered compositions.


So ready yourselves for a bouquet of surprises. Over this Whitsun weekend – and who knows, maybe for longer – take up our invitation to explore new worlds of your own. We are sincerely grateful for your loyalty to our festival and promise that our rich and varied concerts, a wine-tasting session and fine food will offer an abundant, vibrant palette of TERRAE INCOGNITAE.




Jürg Dähler                         Familie von Salis
Intendant                            Host