At dawn, the first piano notes are heard in the huge engine room. The famous Ruhrtriennale opened its doors – “without much noise”.

Gladbeck (dpa) – The new Ruhrtriennale kicked off on Saturday morning with a “dawn concert” in the huge Zweckel machine room in Gladbeck. Among other things, Maurice Ravel’s piano music could be heard.

The famous festival of opera, theater and music in disused industrial buildings in the Ruhr area is under the direction of Switzerland Barbara Frey this year and the next two. After the first 5 a.m. concert, she first invited the audience to an outdoor breakfast.

The 58-year-old wants to create an opening “without much noise,” a spokeswoman said. Likewise, the festival is expected to end after about six weeks: on September 25, a five-hour Klangforum Wien concert with contemporary works is scheduled in the Jahrhunderthalle Bochum under the motto “Night Space” in which the audience is expected to s ‘immerse yourself in a “monumental sleeping space” “lying on mats”.

A total of 110 events with 37 productions and projects are planned for the festival until September 25. The artistic director presents herself on several occasions as a director – already on Saturday evening with the world premiere of her dramatic creation for “The Fall of House Usher” by Edgar Allan Poe.

Other major in-house or co-productions include the opera “Bählamms Fest” by composer Olga Neuwirth, for which writer Elfriede Jelinek wrote the libretto, and a performance by 64 drummers in the Duisburg Power Center – a hall where once electricity and preheated air for blast furnaces were produced. The Bochum Symphony Orchestra contributes, among other things, to Bruckner’s Symphony No. 2, and the Chorwerk Ruhr is planning a performance of Mendelssohn Bartholdy’s famous oratorio “Elias”.

The Ruhrtriennale takes place in former industrial halls in Bochum, Duisburg, Essen and Gladbeck and, with a budget of around 16 million euros, is one of the country’s main festivals. Swiss Frey was previously the artistic director of the Züricher Schauspielhaus from 2009 to 2019 – as the first woman in the history of the stage.