The highest ranked cruise ship in the world, according to the 2012 Berlitz Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ Europa is offering guests two world-class music festivals in 2012.
The “Ocean Sun Festival,” the only classical music festival on the High Seas, will feature internationally acclaimed classical music stars performing on board, as well as exclusive concerts at historical sites ashore. Additionally, the “Stella Maris“ International Vocal Competition will bring together up-and-coming young singers from the most renowned opera houses in the world to perform and compete on board a Middle East and Africa itinerary. These two music cruises are the highlights of a total of nine music cruises aboard the Europa in 2012.
Now in its sixth year, the “Ocean Sun Festival” has been compared to the prestigious Festival del Sole in Napa Valley, California and the Tuscan Sun Festival in Italy. For an added dimension to this musical experience, international music critics will offer lectures along the route. On board, “Ocean Sun Festival” guests will experience the breathtaking violinist Janine Jansen, the aspiring pianist Igor Levit and renowned soprano vocalist Marlis Petersen. This musical voyage continues ashore with the soloists joining the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra in Bergen, Norway. While the classical music concerts are the highlights of this itinerary, the EUROPA will glide through the picturesque Norway fjords, with stops in the charming and multifaceted cities of Bergen and Oslo. This 12-day itinerary from August 12-24, 2012, starts at $6,670 per person/based on double occupancy for a suite.
In cooperation with the prestigious international opera houses, the EUROPA will also be hosting their fourth annual classical music competition at sea, “Stella Maris.”
Under the direction of Canadian tenor Michael Schade, a jury of famous personalities in the classical music field will judge the top talent represented by international opera houses. The distinguishing feature of “Stella Maris” is that the audience determines the winner of the cash prize worth €15,000. This prize, generous compared to others in the world of classical music, is provided by Hapag-Lloyd Cruises. The jury will decide on the recipients of the additional prizes, which include: a guest engagement at an international opera house, a concert, and a test recording with Deutsche Grammophon.
The competition will occur on board an 18-day Middle Eastern and Africa cruise through the Indian Ocean from November 7-25, 2012, making stops in Dubai, Oman, the Seychelles and Madagascar this November. The itinerary starts at $9,150 per person/based on double occupancy for a suite.