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Mission Statement

Göttingen International Handel Festival

Our roots
The Göttingen International Handel Festival was founded in 1920, making it one of the world’s oldest festivals for Baroque music. Our internationally renowned Artistic Director Laurence Cummings and the FestspielOrchester Göttingen, an ensemble bringing together specialists from all over the world year for year, stand for our commitment to fulfil the highest standards in the area of historical performance practice.
Thanks to the personal engagement of many Göttingen citizens, the Göttingen International Handel Festival retains deep roots in the municipality to this day. At the same time, the Festival has sent out a message of great openness to the world since its very beginnings. Every year, an unmistakable Festival flair and exceptional concert venues attract numerous guests from near and far to this pleasant and welcoming university city, as well as into the whole region of Southern Lower Saxony.

Our programme
Each season, the Festival addresses the works of George Frideric Handel under a central thematic heading. The many-facetted Festival programme encompasses not only original works but also historical or modern arrangements. The centrepiece of the Festival is the performance of an opera. The audience can witness productions spanning the entire interpretational spectrum, from contemporary to Baroque, in contrasting styles and based on varying aesthetic concepts. We invite top-class soloists and ensembles to Göttingen, as well as offering highly talented young artists an international platform.

Our aims
We wish to kindle enthusiasm for the music of George Frideric Handel across all generations, inspiring people to enter into a lively engagement with the composer and his work. Cultural education and outreach are of particular importance to us. To this end, we develop formats and projects for particular target groups, for children and young people as well as for adults of all ages. In doing so, we always keep in view our international standing, as well as our strong regional roots and networks with cultural players within Göttingen and throughout Southern Lower Saxony.