Festival Maribor

The history of the Festival Maribor spans almost half a century, mainly focusing on Baroque styles in its beginnings and gradually extending its repertoire to post-modern transformations. It evolved from Music September, an international chamber music festival, inheriting its refined programming, stellar performance standards and unorthodox organizational style. The festival invites acclaimed musicians from Slovenia as well as abroad, who perform carefully selected programmes according to the content cue of the festival in various ensembles – from chamber to orchestral ones.

Find out more about the Festival Maribor’s History.


For several years the Festival Maribor Orchestra represented the festival’s core, composed of excellent musicians, members of domestic and various world orchestras. Boldly conceived orchestral repertoire consisted of literature for chamber orchestra as well as grand symphonic and vocal-instrumental works. This year the festival’s programme will be co-created by different musicians and international ensembles. Foreign celebrities will represent the core of festival’s music creation as well as domestic musicians. The same core that possesses the Festival Maribor Chamber Ensemble 2016, which will thematically reproduce a concert evening especially conceived for this year’s festival. We will also continue our cooperation with the Slovene National Theatre Symphony Orchestra.

Regular features of the festival’s programme concept are also presentation and promotion of young slovene artists, who benefit from working together with giants of classical music and gain a wonderful experience as well as new career references.

For this year’s Festival Maribor among children we will cooperate with the leading pedagogic forces in the field of music in Maribor, especially The Maribor Conservatory of Music and Ballet and Zavod MARS Maribor.


The concerts are held at various concert halls around Maribor and smaller venues in the area filled with history and charm, such as the Fin de Siècle Union Hall acclaimed for its superb acoustics, the renovated Minorite Church, Kazina Hall and the Old and Grand Hall of the Slovene National Theatre Maribor, adding Vetrinj Mansion to the list in 2016. In addition, concerts take place in the picturesque squares of Maribor's historic centre.

The Maribor Festival is one of Europe's finest summer festivals. Rating:****

John Allison, The Sunday Telegraph (VB), 2010

The Woman Project concert was utterly brilliant and was definitely the highlight of the whole festival. [...] The surroundings of the Slovene National theatre allowed for video excerpts that interspersed brilliantly with all that went on and the concert was truly the high point of proceedings.

Gerald Fenech, Music & Vision, 2014

In this year the Festival Maribor is even more eagerly tackling the popular culture and is opening new areas of understanding between various music and art genres.

Žiga Brdnik, 14. 9. 2013, Večer

It is fascinating how a temporary, non-institutional orchestra, apparently motivated by reasons other than those of conventional orchestras, can be transformed in such a short time into a harmonious and flexible performing body with exuberant energy. It is capable of delivering outstanding interpretations of even the most demanding chamber and symphonic works.

Stanislav Koblar, Pogledi (SI), 2011

In the most sensational concert of an often sensational Maribor Music Festival week, Giovanni Sollima issued a challenge to all who think the cello is for the faint of heart… this was music that lifted the cello into the realms of the musical gods. It didn’t hurt that the cello people were partnered to breath-taking precision and intensity by the Festival Maribor strings and its miracle-working conductor, Marko Letonja.

GLaurence Vittes, Huffington Post (USA), 2011

The Berlin Orchestra - this time as a chamber ensemble - shone in moments of crystal clarity (Valse Lente by Schreker), galant enthusiasm (Mendelssohn), I was also impressed by the broad dynamic spectre which reached to barely audible lows (Valse Triste by Sibelius)

Aljaž Zupančič, 9. 9. 2013, Večer

An astounding testament to what world-class musicians can produce in a two-week period of intensive work.

Laurence Vittes, Seen and Heard International (USA), 2011

As the artistic director, Richard Tognetti exerted himself in his own manner: unrestrained temperament, virtuoso know-how, creative imagination, sense of timing, stage talent, charisma… Adding the richness of the orchestral sound – could we ask for anything more?

Janko Šetinc, Večer (SI), 2011

Richard Tognetti is one of the most characterful, incisive and impassioned violinists to be heard today.

he Daily Telegraph (UK)

When we pass the festival’s recognisable posters, my children call out to me: ‘Look, mom, it’s our friends!’ And let them become your friends too.

Petra Greiner, Večer, 2015

Classical music breaking free.

Laurence Vittes, Huffington Post (USA), 2011

Unlike the temporary nature of the Festival Maribor Orchestra, the permanent Slovenian orchestras (the Radio Orchestra and Slovene Philharmonics) can only dream of a comparable intensity or zeal at this point.

Jure Dobovišek, Delo (SI), 2011

This is a festival which I will always enjoy attending since I am always made at home by the organisers, a lively bunch of talented music lovers who surely deserve the highest accolades.

Gerald Fenech, Music & Vision, 2013

Maribor is not a city with which you would normally associate classical music of the highest quality – that accolade is normally reserved for illustrious places such as Berlin, Vienna, London or New York. But for a few days in early September, Maribor was indeed a city of excellence in all ways imaginable.

Gerald Fenech, Music and Vision (USA), 2010