Why Austria is a Must Visit for Classical Music Lovers in 2020

Austria and Music are closely tied together. No other country can claim such an impressive history of major composers who either came from or made their mark within its borders. And that history continues to nurture and inspire today’s musicians. For all Austrians, music is an essential part of who they are—and a source of great pride. In 2020 Austria is celebrating two significant anniversaries lovers of classical music need to have on their radar.

Vienna 2020. Capital of Music

Today, like 250 years ago, Vienna still sets the tone as the capital of music. More famous composers have lived here than in any other city. In 2020 all of Vienna will celebrate the 250th birthday of Ludwig van Beethoven. The musical genius came here aged 22 – to stay forever. Beethoven was a radical, elemental force both as a human being and as an artist. A visionary who questioned and reinvented everything that had gone before - and thus gave impetus that continues to have an effect today. Vienna was his home for 35 years, a place of creativity and inspiration.

In Beethoven Year 2020, his revolutionary music will be heard even more often than usual in concerts, for example at the Musikverein and the Wiener Konzerthaus. The Vienna State Opera and the Theater an der Wien present Beethoven's only opera "Fidelio". Special exhibitions, such as those at the Austrian National Library and the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, give insight into the many facets of his personality and the unbelievable genius of his works. Traces of the composer are manifold: original Beethoven homes (nowadays used as a large Beethoven museum, top restaurant or heuriger), places of his triumph and doubt, monuments, Klimt's Beethoven Frieze in the Secession through to the grave of honor in the Central Cemetery. Vienna's museum of sound, the House of Music, presents Beethoven in interactive form.

More information here.


1920 - 2020: Centennial of the Salzburg Festival

In summer 2020, the Salzburg Festival will celebrate its 100th birthday. This festival of music and theater, which began in August 1920 with a performance of “Jedermann”, is now regarded as one of the most prestigious on the planet. What makes the Salzburg Festival so unique, is its combination of opera, theater and concerts, performed at the very highest level.

During festival season, all of Salzburg City is transformed into one giant stage: Coffeehouses extend their opening hours and the display windows of downtown shops are decorated with the very latest-and-greatest items. In parallel to the Salzburg Festival itself, numerous other events and art shows are held, while practically all of the museums and galleries in the city synchronize their summer exhibitions with the festival dates.

The Salzburg Festival has never wanted to be just another “event” and 2020 is promised to take that idea to the next level. One of the highlights will be the major state exhibition at the Salzburg Museum entitled “Great World Theatre – The Salzburg Festival Centenary” (April 25 until October 31, 2020).  In addition to a chronology of the Festival, it will exhibit countless documents, stories and original items associated with productions from the past 100 years.  The various enactments and special events offer visitors space for experiences, participation and personal memories as well. The exhibition has been conceived as a “staged play”, in keeping with Max Reinhardt’s conviction that a theatrical work can only fulfil its potential in intense exchange with its audience.

More information here.


For further 300dpi images you can visit our image database: views.austria.info or contact:

Austrian National Tourist Office
Astrid Gruchmann-Licht, Director
T: (02) 9299 3621

Images of Music in Austria