Montblanc White Nights Festival


Montblanc White Nights Festival


International Premiere of “Montblanc New Voices at Stars of the White Nights 2008”

Montblanc as a Sponsor Partner of the “White Nights Festival” in St Petersburg
Movie stars Elsa Pataky and Maria Mironova attend as does sporting legend, boxer, Vitali Klitschko

For many years, Montblanc has been culturally engaged, and this year is supporting Valéry Gergiev’s “White Nights Festival” in St Petersburg for the first time on an international basis. After a Russian kick-off event in 2007, this year Montblanc presents the “Montblanc New Voices at Stars of the White Nights”, an award for the promotion of talented young opera singers under the guidance of Valéry Gergiev – friend and supporter of Montblanc for many years – in front of an international audience.

Valéry Gergiev, star-conductor and artistic director of the Festival and the Mariinsky Theatre, will present this year’s Montblanc award to the Russian soprano Anastasia Kalagina on June 20th during the award ceremony at the Mariinsky Theatre at 11:00 a.m. About 80 journalists from 15 countries will attend the award ceremony – together with special Montblanc VIP guests and friends including movie star actress Elsa Pataky, Russian superstar Maria Mironova and sporting legend Vitali Klitschko. The Montblanc New Voices Award 2008 winner will perform during a Montblanc Gala Concert in St Petersburg on the evening of the same day.

The “White Nights Festival” of the St Petersburg Mariinsky Theatre and “Montblanc New Voices at Stars of The White Nights”

There is a unique phenomenon that every summer bathes the culture city of St Petersburg in a glowing light. During the “White Nights” in June, the sun never fully sets and fills the sky of the world’s northernmost metropolis with a silvery glow. The impressive natural spectacle provides a magnificent setting for the “White Nights Festival” of the Mariinsky Theatre, a high-calibre cultural event with national and international top ensembles from opera, ballet and classical music.

In 1993, the renowned conductor, artistic director and general manager of the Mariinsky Theatre, Valéry Gergiev, initiated what is today the internationally renowned “White Nights Festival”, and also restored the achievements of the traditional opera house to such heights that it is currently named in the same breath as the Metropolitan Opera in New York or La Scala, Milan.

In 2007, he also became the patron of a unique award: the “New Voices Award” presented by Montblanc in honour of a talented young singer.

In 2007, Katherine Jenkins, the 27 year old Welsh mezzo-soprano, was honoured with this award. This year a new voice will be honoured by Valérey Gergiev and Montblanc in front of an international press audience.

Winner of the “Montblanc New Voices at Stars of The White Nights”

Anastasia Kalagina at the illustrious Mariinsky Ball

The 2008 winner of the “Montblanc New Voices Award” is the Russian soprano Anastasia Kalagina. Since 1998, this native of St Petersburg has been a soloist at the “Mariinsky Academy of Young Singers” and in 2001 was awarded the Moniuszko Prize at the international Stanislaw Moniuszko vocal competition in Warsaw.

Anastasia Kalagina has been a soloist at the Mariinsky Theatre since 2007. The virtuosity of her voice will once again enchant the public of the “White Nights Festival” on June 20th 2008 at the Montblanc gala concert, with the Mariinsky Orchestra, conducted by Valéry Gergiev.

This gala concert will be one of the highlight events of “The Stars of the White Nights Festival”. At that concert Valery Gergiev will introduce Anastasia Kalagina as the winner of “Montblanc New Voices at Stars of the White Nights 2008”, in a performance of a piece by Henry Dutillie entitled “Correspondances“

On June 21st 2008, the festival’s exclusive highlight will take place in the form of the “Mariinsky Ball”, the music of which is also conducted by Valéry Gergiev. This will be a dazzling evening with numerous international personalities and VIPs in the baroque glory of the palace of Catherine the Great. Here too, the spotlight will be focussed on the Montblanc Award winner Anastasia Kalagina, whose singing will crown a ball, which even in the era of the Russian Tsars, was an event for high society