Ensembles from all over the world speak Music in Göttingen

Göttingen, February 15, 2024

Ensembles from all over the world speak Music in Göttingen: The göttingen händel competition 2024

47 musicians at the beginning of their promising careers, 21 nationalities from five continents: The applications for this year's göttingen händel competition, the chamber music competition of the Göttingen International Handel Festival, or “ghc” for short, reveal a strong international desire and drive for art music. Eight ensembles have been invited to compete in front of an audience and a jury on May 13 and 14. The winning ensembles will perform in concerts on May 15 and 16. The prize of the Göttinger Händel-Gesellschaft, the special prize “Music and Space”, the Bärenreiter Urtext Prize and an audience prize will be awarded. Tickets and more information are available at

Perhaps it is no coincidence that the competition takes place every year around Pentecost: people from all corners of the world come together and discover a mutual understanding, and a common language that transcends all languages. At the göttingen händel competition, this language is music. “Parlamusica” is the name of one of the invited ensembles, “Speak Music”. The applicants hail from Finland, Poland, Spain, the Netherlands, Japan, New Zealand and Mexico. They play recorders, violins, harp and trumpet, harpsichords, transverse flutes, viola da gamba and theorbo. The names of those invited include “Misenos”, “Tra Noi” and “Nari Baroque”, “Régence Sonore”, “Vestigium” and “Duo Wolfer-Krkljuš” – and the delights of music, “Les délices de la musique”. “All young people who are passionate about early music,“ enthused jury member Christiane Irrgang for NDR in 2022, and is pleased to be participating again this year.

There is plenty to win: the Göttingen Handel Society Prize is endowed with 5,000 euros, the special prize “Music and Space” with 2,000 euros and an invitation to the “FEL!X” Original Sound Festival at the Kölner Philharmonie. In addition, the Bärenreiter Urtext Prize of the Bärenreiter publishing house will be awarded with a music voucher worth 1,000 euros and an audience prize. This year, the ensembles can also apply for one of only ten places in the two-year European “S-EEEmerging” support program, which prepares young ensembles for professional life through musical and entrepreneurial training and is funded by the European Union.

S-EEEmerging and “FEL!X” will also each provide a juror: Pierre Bornachot, Deputy Director of the Cultural Meeting Center in Ambronay, France, and Theresa De Luca, responsible for concert planning at the Kölner Philharmonie. They will be joined by Christiane Irrgang, music editor for NDR Kultur, and Michael Schäfer, longtime arts editor at the Göttinger Tageblatt. Jochen Schäfsmeier, Managing Director of the Festival, will chair the jury. A special feature of this year's jury is recorder virtuoso Erik Bosgraaf, who will take off on “Bird Flights” with Dorothee Oberlinger as part of the festival on May 12.

The Göttingen International Handel Festival has been organizing its “ghc” for seven years. And it impresses not only with quality, but also with innovation. The special prize “Music and Space”, for example, is awarded to the submission that makes the most imaginative use of the spatial conditions of the award-winning concert. This year's venue is the St. Martini church in Adelebsen. The size and layout of the space, the position of the stage, the acoustics, the surroundings and the history of the venue all play a role in the artistic decisions of the ensembles.

Over a hundred years ago, it was the Festival that brought Handel's great stage works back into the world. Today, great musical art from all over the world is brought to Göttingen and the region: with the numerous international stars of the Festival Opera and Oratorio, but also with the participants of the “ghc”. Thanks to the help of many supporters: the Göttinger Händel-Gesellschaft and its 800 members, the Bärenreiter-Verlag, the Göttinger Tageblatt and the NDR Kultur, which will broadcast the prizewinners' concert this year. We would also like to thank Sartorius, EAM, the district of Göttingen and the Georg-August University, and finally the “FEL!X” festival, the “S-EEEmerging” program and its sponsor, the European Union.

The göttingen händel competition 2024: On May 13 (preliminary round) and 14 (final round) at 10 am in the Adam-von-Trott-Saal at the Alte Mensa of the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen. The announcement of the winning ensembles will take place on May 14 at 2:30 pm. Visitors to the final round will vote for the audience award. The winner's concert of the special prize “Music and Space” will take place on May 15 at 7.30 pm in the St. Martini Church in Adelebsen, the winner's concert of the prize of the Göttinger Händel-Gesellschaft e. V. on May 16 at 5 pm in the St. Albani Church in Göttingen. Tickets are available online and at the Tourist Information, Markt 8, at the Deutsches Theater Göttingen, at TonKost, Jüdenstraße 31, and at all Eventim ticket offices throughout Germany. Göttingen students can attend all events free of charge (including bus transfer to Adelebsen) with the Kulturticket. For more information, please visit