Wiener Festwochen

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Opening of the Wiener Festwochen 2014

The Wiener Festwochen is a cultural festival in Vienna that takes place every year for five weeks in May and June. The Wiener Festwochen show theater, opera and dance productions from all parts of the world and also act as producers of international productions. In 2020 the festival weeks were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic .


Opening of the Festival Weeks 2008

The first Festwochen events took place as early as 1927. The Wiener Festwochen was re-established after the Second World War in 1951 in the city ​​of Vienna, which was still occupied by the Allies . In 1952 the Festwochen was one of the founding organizations of the European Festivals Association . Since 1962, the Theater an der Wien has served as one of the main venues alongside Halls E and G in the MuseumsQuartier and numerous other varied venues.

From 2002, Luc Bondy was director of the Wiener Festwochen, after having been its theater director from 1998. The music theater division was headed by music director Stéphane Lissner from 2005 , the drama division from 2008 by drama director Stefanie Carp , who had been responsible for the drama program in 2005.

Artistic director Markus Hinterhäuser was the artistic director from 2014 to 2016 . The acting program was curated by Frie Leysen in 2014. In 2015, Stefan Schmidtke curated the acting program.

During five to six weeks in May and June, the Wiener Festwochen each year have a particular concern to create or help shape cultural events that combine the highest artistic level with socially relevant content and goals. The Wiener Festwochen as an innovative and international city festival are a window to the international theater world and offer a wide range of contemporary art forms and languages. They are not only a reflection of the city's enthusiasm for culture, but also an offer to be open to other cultures and worlds.

In the field of tension between tradition and contemporaneity, the program shows productions in all fields: operas, concerts, theater, performances, installations, readings, films. In addition to new productions of esteemed classics and premieres of contemporary plays with international directors, artists and ensembles from all over the world present celebrated works, often in the original language.

The program offers an average of 40 productions with 175 performances and 70 concerts. Every year around 180,000 people visit the events of the Wiener Festwochen.

At the Austrian Music Theater Prize 2015, the festival weeks were awarded the Golden Schikaneder in the Best Festival category.

In 2020, the usual structure of the festival weeks was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic . Instead, 15 productions will be shown from August 26 to September 26, 2020 under the title Festwochen 2020 reframed . Most of the originally planned world premieres were postponed to 2021.


Opening of the 2013 festival a. a. with Fatima Spar , Willi Resetarits , Michael Schade and the Strottern
Katharina Straßer as singer and presenter with the Fearleaders at the opening in 2019

The opening of the Wiener Festwochen traditionally took place (until 2014) on the Rathausplatz . The fanfare for the opening was composed by Werner Pirchner .

The following took part in the opening event of the Wiener Festwochen 2014 on May 9th: The Arnold Schoenberg Choir and the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Cornelius Meister . The guest choirs included: BNR Mixed Coir from Bulgaria, Concordia Discors from Croatia, coro siamo from Austria, Euga from Finland, La Maîtrise de Paris from France, Liepaites from Lithuania, Sola from Latvia and Vox Bona from Germany. The moderators Cornelius Obonya and Alice Tumler hosted the event.

The opening took place for the first time in 2015 with the Summer Night Concert of the Vienna Philharmonic under the direction of Zubin Mehta in Schönbrunn Palace Gardens. The reason for the relocation from Rathausplatz was the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 , which will take place from May 19 to 23, 2015 .

In 2016, the opening took place again on the Rathausplatz and was designed by Alma , Federspiel , Superar , the grandmother Hatz Salon Orkestar and the Boban Marković Orkestar, Landstreich and Nikolaus Habjan . In 2017 the opening was moderated by Conchita and designed by the Wiener Symphoniker , Harri Stojka , Lylit, Molden / Resetarits / Soyka / Wirth , MoZuluArt, Russkaja and Yasmo & die Klangkantine. The artists at the opening in 2018 were Ernst Molden , Alma , Voodoo Jürgens , Mira Lu Kovacs , Willi Resetarits , Esra Özmen , Gustav , Ursula Strauss , Gerald Votava and Nino from Vienna . The 2019 opening artists included Soap & Skin , Clara Luzia , Esra Özmen, Katharina Straßer , Birgit Denk , Skero and Slavko Ninic.

Artistic Director


The festival weeks are also present in the cityscape with their logo
Poster of the festival weeks 2010 with utopian skyscraper landscape in Vienna

Drama Directorate

Music Director


Highlights of the Wiener Festwochen

See also


Web links

Commons : Wiener Festwochen  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b Wiener Festwochen are canceled. In: . April 6, 2020, accessed April 6, 2020 .
  2. - Music theater award: Sweeney Todd of the Volksoper best production . APA notification dated June 8, 2015, accessed June 8, 2015.
  3. Vienna Festival Weeks start in August rump edition. In: . June 25, 2020, accessed June 25, 2020 .
  4. Schönbrunn Summer Night Concert 2015
  5. Opening of the Wiener Festwochen 2015: Summer Night Concert by the Vienna Philharmonic in Schönbrunn ( Memento of the original from March 7, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. . Retrieved March 7, 2015. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  6. - Wiener Festwochen 2015: Schönbrunn instead of Rathausplatz . APA notification dated December 17, 2014, accessed May 11, 2015.
  7. ^ Opening of the Wiener Festwochen 2016: Blech.Blas.Musik.Tanz. ( Memento of the original from May 7, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. . Retrieved May 7, 2016. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  8. Opening of the Wiener Festwochen 2017 ( Memento of the original from March 22, 2018 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. . Retrieved July 4, 2017. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  9. ^ Kurier: Wiener Festwochen: This is how the opening will be this year . Article dated April 24, 2018, accessed April 24, 2018.
  10. Festwochen: Opening with Soap & Skin and Skero . Article dated April 23, 2019, accessed April 23, 2019.
  11. ^ Wiener Festwochen. Retrieved March 20, 2015 .
  12. a b Christoph Trimmel: Between tradition and reflection of economic and political tendencies - the Wiener Festwochen . Diploma thesis, accessed on November 19, 2014.
  13. - Tomas Zierhofer-Kin becomes director of the Wiener Festwochen . Article dated November 19, 2014, accessed November 19, 2014.
  14. contract with Wiener Festwochen boss terminated . Article dated June 19, 2018, accessed June 19, 2018.
  15. Slagmuylder will stay until 2024 . Article dated October 15, 2018, accessed October 15, 2018.