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Vienna music festival: Wien Modern, Konzerthaus
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Vienna Music Festival Guide 2019: My Top 9

Always have your ear on the ground in the ‘city of music’. If you are serious about music why not pick a Vienna music festival and then treat yourself to a daily dose of gorgeous tunes? To help you do that I have pulled together a festival guide for my home city:

Resonanzen Festival

Vienna music festival: KonzerthausVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. Prefer Bach to Mozart, motet to serenade? Each January, Vienna celebrates Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque music for nine days. If you love to explore Old Europe’s sounds of harpsichords, recorders, lutes, and guitars, dive into the annual Resonanzen Festival.

For the past 27 years, the festival has been gathering top international orchestras and ensembles under a different theme. In 2020, the ten scheduled concerts will be dedicated to ‘The 10 Commandments’.

Dates: 18th to 26th January 2020
Location: Wiener Konzerthaus, Lothringer Strasse 20, 1030 Vienna
Programme and Tickets: access the full programme and get tickets

International Music Festival

Vienna Music Festival: Wiener KonzerthausVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. Clearly, the Wiener Konzerthaus, the home of the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, adores almost any music. Hence, its widely praised ‘Internationales Musikfest’ embraces the finest of classical and modern music as well as jazz and contemporary tunes. During seven weeks in May and June, you can choose from a dazzling array of events. All of them star top national and international orchestras, ensembles and soloists.

For 2019, my favourites are the Vienna Philharmonics’ performance of Mahler’s 8th Symphony and the piano evening with Elisabeth Leonskaja playing Mozart.

Dates: 11th May to 1st July 2019
Location: Wiener Konzerthaus, Lothringer Strasse 20, 1030 Vienna
Programme and Tickets: check the festival programme and more performances and get tickets

Vienna Festival

Vienna music festival: Bela TarrVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. What on earth have the Wiener Festwochen in common with The Sound of Music? Actually, both helped Austria after the Nazi Regime to re-set its image and re-connect with the world. While Hollywood adapted history in The Sound of Music, the Vienna Festival actively makes you think about Austria’s past in a forward-looking way through art and culture.

Since the 1950’s, the Wiener Festwochen blend the established with the latest in local and international art, music, dance, theater, performance, installation, and workshops. As much as unheard-of newcomers also classical artists form part of the festival.

During Austria’s largest cultural festival, expect fresh approaches to world classics performed by top orchestras, conductors, theater producers and singers. This photo shows Hungarian film maker Béla Tarr. Definitely, the festival’s highlight is the grand opening show in front of Vienna City Hall (free admission). Book well in advance before you visit Vienna.

Dates: 10th May to 16th June 2019
Locations: various across Vienna
Programme and tickets: go to website

Donauinselfest

Things to do in Vienna June : Danube Island FestivalVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. When the annual Donauinselfest, Europe’s largest free open air festival, arrives summer gets into full swing in Wien. For three days, the long stretch of the Danube Island transforms into a huge outdoor party. 

If you want to experience the best of Austria’s pop culture, join thousands of fun loving people, along with dozens of pop stars and radio stations, for free concerts, Vienna sausages, kebabs and beer. All in all, Donauinsel, will close a fun gap in your Vienna sightseeing programme.

Date: 21st to 23rd June 2019
Location: Danube Island (Donauinsel)
Admission: free

Vienna Jazz Festival

Vienna Concerts : Vienna Jazz Festival, JazzkantineVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. During two weeks each summer you can witness our mostly baroque Vienna all jazzed up. Spread across various locations these Vienna concerts represent a mix of internationally renown jazz stars and national singers.
 
In the past, celebrities such as Natalie Cole, Randy Crawford, Bobby McFerrin, George Benson, Bryan Ferry, and Helge Schneider performed at the festival. For the 2019 event, the programme is expected to be released in the spring.
 
Dates: 23rd 
Locations: various across Vienna, from the Vienna State Opera and Vienna Konzerthaus to open air concerts at City Hall square to Hundertwasser-designed incineration plant.
Programme and Tickets: visit website

Grafenegg Festival

Vienna concerts: Grafenegg castleVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. Just outside of Vienna, Grafenegg Castle in the Danube’s Wachau Valley has become an insider spot for lovers of classical and jazz music. Each summer top musicians and orchestras such as the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra perform at this romantic 19th century castle.

Between August and September, the ‘Cloud Tower’ auditorium will air sounds of famous classical composers. In 2019, the festival will open with Vivaldi’s Four Seaons, continue with music from Bach, Beethoven, Haydn, Mozart, Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky, a.o., and end with Brahms and Dvorak.

Time: 13th June to 8th September 2019
Location: Grafenegg Castle; Schlosstrasse 10, 3485 Grafenegg
Programme and Tickets: get tickets for various performances (the ticket site also offers a resale service in case your trip plans change). In case of bad weather there is an option to move the open air event to the onsite Auditorium.

Transfer And More: Conveniently, a festival shuttle bus runs from Vienna to Grafenegg and back. However, once you travel to Grafenegg you may as well visit UNESCO World Heritage Site of Wachau Valley nearby. For example, you could take a boat ride on the Danube, followed by lunch at a winery and exploring baroque Melk Abbey before getting showered with music and fireworks at Grafenegg.  Get in touch if you need assistance.

Klezmore Vienna Festival

Vienna Music FestivalL Vienna Klezmore OrchestraVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. When the Klezmer clarinets start teasing, laughing and chatting with you Jewish Vienna and its European heritage flourish again. During two weeks in November the Vienna Klezmore Orchestra along with other bands from Europe and overseas stage a dozen vibrant concerts across town. With that much Jewish dance music and Yiddish songs from the Steppes and Shtetls it’s hard to stay seated.

Dates: dates 2019 tbc
Locations: various across Vienna
Programme and Tickets: visit website

Voice Mania

Vienna music festival Voice ManiaVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. When I hear a great voice sing freely on its own I sometimes get goose bumps. As a matter of fact, Voice Mania shows that I am not the only one getting excited about great vocals. Just as high fog hits November’s skies you can hear some fabulous voices from all over the world. For a start, ‘Balcanto’ singers will belt out arias, yodlers, gospels and electrifying sound rhythms from various balconies in Vienna’s city center. Most of the other concerts will take place at Theater am Spittelberg.
 
Dates: dates 2019 tbc
Locations: various balconies in the city center (Balcanto); Theater am  Spittelberg, Spittelberggasse 10, 1070 Vienna;
Admission: free (Balcanto); approx EUR 25 per concert ticket; check programme

Wien Modern Festival

Vienna music festival: Vienna Symphony Orchestra and Sylvain CambrelingVienna Music Festival Guide 2019. Wien Modern is the ultimate local festival for contemporary music. Uniquely for Vienna, the event provides an international platform for contemporary music, supported by dance, performance, visual arts, film and video. In this photo from Wien Modern 2018 you see the Vienna Symphonic Orchestra under the baton of French conductor Sylvain Cambreling.

Each festival is related to a theme. In 2017, for example, ‘Images In Your Head’ approached visuals and music through orchestra music, electronic music, film, workshops and performances. In general, you can choose between 50 events at around 16 locations.

Dates: dates 2019 to be confirmed in the spring

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