Unfortunately, the popular summer night gala from Grafenegg had to be cancelled in 2020 - like many other events - due to the corona crisis. Instead, a Grafenegg soirée of a special kind was thought up - within the permitted conditions: Under the open sky, in the middle of the extensive palace park, pianist and artistic director Rudolf Buchbinder will give an exclusive concert together with various section leaders from the Tonkünstler Orchestra NÖ. Well-known pieces from the classical piano repertoire as well as chamber music works with piano accompaniment will be performed at various locations on the festival grounds, between the Wolkenturm, castle, auditorium, garden pavilion and idyllic park biotope. The staging of the venues follows the usual time schedule of an open-air concert - it begins at dusk, when the sun is still shining, and ends in the moonlit night.
Even for the artists accustomed to the Grafenegger open-air concerts, it is a new experience to play the set of variations from Franz Schubert's "Trout Quintet" or the rondo from Joseph Haydn's G Major Trio Hob. 15/25 in front of the baroque Nepomuk Ensemble in the middle of a green meadow. In addition to the garden pavilion and auditorium, where Chopin, Beethoven and Mozart are performed, the bridge in front of the palace entrance becomes an unusual concert venue with Alfred Grünfeld's piano paraphrase "Soirée de Vienne".
As Grafenegger's artistic director, Rudolf Buchbinder knows every corner of his festival grounds and has performed countless times on the stage of the Wolkenturm. But the fact that he would one day play the Schubert Impromptus op. 90, which he held in such high esteem, on his own podium in the middle of the empty rows of the audience is also a surprising experience for him. The musical journey through Grafenegg ends with the "Moonlight Sonata" by the annual regent Beethoven - in authentic and romantic style under old trees and with shimmering moonlight, staged by video director Felix Breisach.