25 April-27 July. This year the festival is dedicated to Dante Alighieri on the 750th anniversary of his birth in 1265. It is the beginning of a multi-disciplinary project which will end in 2021, the anniversary the poet's death in Ravenna in 1321.
The festival will commission special contemporary works during this period inspired by the modern-day significance of the Divine Comedy. Two Dante related works this year are the video opera L’amor che move il sole e l’altre stelle by Adriano Guarnieri, directed by Christina Muti (5 June) and Vita Nuova by Nicola Piovani (6 June).
The much awaited opera production this year is Verdi's Falstaff, conducted by Riccardo Muti to end the festival (23, 25, 26 July). In the concert series there is Pierre Boulez, L'opera pianistica to honour the French composer on his 90th birthday (7 June); the Munich Philharmonic conducted by Seymon Bychkov (26 June); Orchestra Giovanile Luigi Cherubini conducted by Riccardo Muti (4, 6 July); an evening of Bela Bartok quartets (7 July); the Budapest Strings Orchestra (9 July); Riccardo Muti's master class for young conductors is based on Verdi's Falstaff (27 July).
This year also sees the beginning of a collaboration between the Ravenna Festival and the Festival dei Due Mondi di Spoleto which involves special commissions and residencies. For full details see www.ravennafestival.org.