Students, faculty, and guest artists all stay together at Leipziger Hof (Innsbruck)  and at the Hotel Elisabethpark in Bad Gastein, which has become a second home for many returning participants to the festival. Several leisure activities are planned to encourage the participants to get to know one another, including hiking, a carriage ride through Passau National Park, visiting local festivals, and an evening of 19th century ballroom dancing with an orchestra, under the direction of late Maestro Pauss. A particular highlight is an excursion to Salzburg to attend a performance at the legendary Salzburg Music Festival. In 2018, participants attended a concert by the Wien Philharmonia, led by Essa-Pekka Salonen, solo performances by pianists Grigory Sokolov and Evgeny Kissin, and a rare staging of Monteverdi’s opera L’Incoronazzione di Poppea.

After specially structured blocks of practicing and performing, both professors and students take time to relax and explore the magnificent beauty of Bad Gastein and its surrounding area. Here are some activities that the attendees have enjoyed in the past:

  • Excursion to Salzburg
  • Attending selected performances during renowned Salzburg International Music Festival
  • Half-day hiking trip
  • Horse-carriage ride to the Passau National Park
  • Visiting Austrian holiday celebrations, local festivals and, even a real 19-century style ball-room dancing evening with the orchestra from Salzburg, playing waltzes, polkas, marches etc

Keeping in close contact with the Bureau of Tourism, this is a great learning opportunity to know more about people, their local traditions, music, food, dancing as well as the social activities.

Pictures from previous years