In winter, between Christmas and late January, the best organs in the local churches celebrate the Pontino Organ Festival, founded in 2013 to make the organ and its repertoire known to the general public.
It is a musical genre with distant traditions and an immense organ heritage in lower Lazio. The organ is a complete instrument, capable of great power and delicacy at the same time and great composers have created music to enhance its expressiveness.
With this festival throughout the south Pontine echoes the suggestive and melancholic notes of one of the oldest instruments in the world.
The festival includes several events and takes place in the major centres of the province of Latina with the main European organists and the greatest current musicians and instrumentalists.
The concerts take place from late afternoon until dinner time and during the event they present the same concert in several places to give everyone the opportunity, free of charge, to listen to the talents who come to the province of Latina.
From year to year, truly evocative locations are chosen, such as the Cathedral of Ss. Erasmo and Marciano di Gaeta, the Cathedral of San Pietro Apostolo in Fondi, and the Sanctuary of the Madonna del Cielo in Formia.
The review also has a great response from the public and this is due, in addition to the presence of the festival in several municipalities in the south of the Pontine, the variety of repertoire and the quality of the musicians hosted.
In the last editions of the Cathedral of Fondi, internationally renowned organists have appeared, such as Mario Duella, Fredrik Albertsson and the Russian naturalized national Jan Bokszczanin, who also performed in the edition of the Church of Ss. Lorenzo and Giovanni Battista in Formia.
The festival not only offers concerts by organists but also classical music performances. For example, in 2018 at the Sanctuary of San Nilo in Gaeta and the Church of San Francesco D’Assisi in Minturno he played the “Città di Formia” Polyphonic Choir, the Trio Friedrich and the Ensemble of Maestro Girolamo Frescobaldi.
You can participate in other performances in the churches of the municipalities of Amaseno and other churches in Formia (San Giuseppe Lavoratore and Santa Maria dei Martiri).
Almost always the last concert at the end of January is in Monte San Biagio at the parish church of San Giovanni Battista, and is an event included in the calendar for the celebrations of the patronal feast of San Biagio.
Other names of prestigious organists who performed in the Pontino Organ Festival include the famous pianist and harpsichordist Alberto Firrincieli, the well-known organist from the Marche, Gianluigi Spaziani, the organists Paolo Bougeat and Christian Tarabbia.
The festival is directed by the internationally renowned young conductor, pianist and organist M° Gabriele Pezone, born in Fondi and also artistic director of the Fondi Music Festival.