The 44th edition of the Ambronay baroque festival in mourning. Argentinian baritone Alejandro Meerapfel died in mid-show Friday evening while performing on stage. The concert which was held in the abbey of this commune in Ain was interrupted and the public evacuated.
“A 54-year-old man, a member of the troupe on stage, died following illness during a television performance,” the Ain Departmental Fire and Rescue Service (Sdis) confirmed on Saturday. Emergency services intervened around 9:45 p.m. and “the public was quickly evacuated and a request for possible psychological support for the troops was also transmitted to center 15,” specifies Sdis.
The Cappella Mediterranea ensemble and the Namur Chamber Choir were on stage in Ambronay Abbey under the direction of Argentine conductor Leonardo García Alarcón. The ensemble performed Il Dono della Vita eterna, oratorio al santo sepolcro, a work dating from 1686 and signed by the Viennese composer Antonio Draghi. The show was broadcast by France Télévisions on Culturebox.
The Ambronay festival, which is one of the major European baroque events each year, takes place from September 15 to October 8.