Incontri in Terra di Siena is a non-profit cultural association founded in 1989 in memory of Antonio Origo and his wife, Anglo-Irish biographer and writer, Iris Origo. The event is held in the medieval castle of Castelluccio on the Origos estate, known as La Foce near Montepulciano, in Val d’Orcia. In the 1920s, the couple restored the 15th-century villa and had the gardens, today considered amongst the finest in Italy, designed by the English architect Cecil Pinsent.
Artistic Director of the Festival is Antonio Lysy, Antonio and Iris’ grandson, also an internationally-acclaimed cellist and current professor at UCLA. Incontri, also held at Villa La Foce and in neighbouring towns, such as Pienza, Radicofani, Cetona, Città della Pieve and San Quirico d’Orcia, with its concerts, meetings and artistic events, aims to increase appreciation in music and art.
This year the event is starting off on July 25th with John Eliot Gardiner conducting l’Accademia Monteverdiana in Claudio Monteverdi’s ‘Madrigals of War and Love’ at the Teatro degli Arrischianti in Sarteano.The following day, 26th, at Città della Pieve in the Teatro degli Avvaloranti, pianist Julius Drake accompanies tenor Ian Bostridge.
On the 28th at the Castelluccio in La Foce it will be the turn of pianists Lucille Chung and Alessio Bax who will be performing Schubert, Mendelssohn, Pulenc, Ravel and Piazzolla. On July 29th the Borromeo String Quartet will be performing the ‘Late Quartets I’ by Beethoven at the Pieve di Corsignano in Pienza. The Quartet will be also performing the ‘Late Quartets II’ the following evening at the Church of Triano in Montefollonico.
The Festival closes on July 31st at the Foce with a tour of the gardens, a sunset picnic with a selection of Orcia DOC wines and performances of Mozart, Ernst von Dohnányi and Johannes Brahmes.
Single tickets for the events only cost 25 Euros.
An excellent excuse to come visit the breathtaking Val d’Orcia and its beautiful hamlets.