The Musikfestival 2023 marks a new era in the festival's history: it was the first of a total of five years with pianist Igor Levit as co-artistic director alongside artistic director Thorsten Schmidt.
Guests were great artistic personalities such as Asmik Grigorian, Kirill Gerstein, Vilde Frang, Renaud Capuçon, Jan Lisiecki, Nikolai Lugansky, Kian Soltani, Thomas Quasthoff, Antoine Tamestit, Abel Selaocoe, Peter Eötvös or Veronika Eberle as well as internationally renowned ensembles and orchestras such as the Gringolts Quartet, Cuarteto Casals, Quatuor Diotima, Collegium 1704, Die Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, Mozarteumorchester Salzburg, Manchester Collective, Aurora Orchestra or the B'Rock Orchestra.
For the first time in the festival's history, the Festivalcampus-Ensemble, an ensemble of 22 young soloists, which opened the Musikfestival and could be experienced in various formations throughout the city in the following weeks.
The Heidelberger Frühling Musikpreis 2023 which is donated by the founding partner of the Musikfestival Heidelberg Materials, was awarded to percussionist Martin Grubinger. Since 2013, the award has honored individuals who have made a substantial and lasting commitment to the teaching of classical music.
Shortly before the start of the festival, the Heidelberger Frühling, together with the Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung and the Freundeskreis of Heidelberger Frühling e.V., had organized a fundraising campaign after the devastating earthquake in Turkey and Syria in February calling for donations. Heidelberger Frühling donated the ticket fees for the March 29 festival concert with singer Ibrahim Keivo, who comes from northeastern Syria, and the NDR Big Band to "Aktion Deutschland Hilft" for the benefit of earthquake victims and also collected additional donations for the alliance. This fundraising campaign was made possible by the sponsorship of the concert by the Freundeskreis des Heidelberger Frühling e.V.. A total donation of 16,536.18 euros has been achieved.
With "Ligeti 100", "Melting Pots", the "Carte Blanche for..." and other focus points, the 2023 edition focused on specific composers, musical themes or concert concepts. The new podcast series "Genau jetzt" as well as the series successfully launched at the last Musikfesitval "Nachhause gehen mit..." complemented the concert experience as music-mediated content.