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What Would Mozart Think? Austria's History of Music Remastered by Millennials

October 8, 2015 By: Austrian Tourist Office

ustria is well-known for its music. And though the genius of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and the classics heard in the Vienna Opera House are celebrated throughout the country, many Millennials seeking a different sound have found plenty to keep them humming while visiting the country.

Concert venues and clubs abound in Austria, showcasing varied types of music and new artists who are not only making a name for themselves within their home country, but also internationally. From classical music to local bands, there are over 500 music festivals throughout Austria and 12 are spotlighted here, some seasonal and some year-round, that could be the centerpeice of any millennial traveler. In addition to music festivals, Austria is host to several street, puppet, food, and dancing festivals for those seeking a full diverse culutural experience.

The International Festival for New Music, or short Salzburg Biennale, mixes contemporary music with traditional works. It is widely known to be a festival for avant-garde classical music and offers more than 30 programs including orchestra and ensemble concerts, chamber music as well as music theatre, lectures, films and multimedia projects. The festival's aim is to promote a wide range of international contemporary music while collaborating with a variety of music institutions from Salzburg. 

The Tyrolean Festival Erl, held at the Passionsspielhaus, known for its striking architecture and spectacular acoustics, is as much part of the town as the people are of the Festival. Locals participate as actors, extras, fire fighters backstage and on stage, technicians, hosts and more. This close relationship between the people of Erl, the Passion Play Association and the Festival organizers is what makes the Tyrolean Festival Erl so unique and supported largely by millennials seeking to promote young musicians and to keep the love for music alive.

Local bands of Austria gone international include the Austrian drum’ n’ bass duo Camo & Krooked—a.k.a. Reinhard Rietsch and Markus Wagner, who launched their career in Salzburg. They produce a varied sound that their website describes as “soulful, sultry tracks” and “raw power of smashers”. Thier song "Meezy" from the Climax album has over 95k plays on Soundcloud.

For some musicians, the Wienerlied (traditional Viennese song) has provided inspiration for a new Wienerlied movement. The band 5/8erl in Ehr‘n are pioneers and one of the most successful bands of this style of music. Their band name refers to the old toast “Ein Achterl in Ehren kann niemand verwehren” (An eighth of wine in honor can do no harm.) The five-person group describes their music as “’Viennese Soul’”, blending dialect with acoustic ballads and smooth grooves.” Their success has even led to the two-time win of the Amadeus Austrian Music Award.

Every year in August, audiences flock to hear performances by the London Symphony Orchestra and the likes amid the beautiful setting of a centuries-old castle and adjacent park at Grafenegg Castle.

Upcoming Concerts

Manu Delago is from Tirol and has played the drums in bands throughout Austria since he was a teen. Today, his instrument of choice is another percussion instrument, the Hang, which could be compared to the steel pan. He uses it for a variety of music styles, including pop, world music and jazz. He is a permanent member of the tour group for Björk, an Icelandic pop band.

Two Austrian bands who met at school include Bauchklang local groove project, whose members studied music at the Borg St. Pölten and founded the group in 1995. Baucklang's performances, seen in the video below, create music soley from their vocals and pack underground concert venues. The funky combo band Bilderbuch started 10 years ago when singer Maurice Ernst and the rest of the band members were 14 and 15 years old and were students of the Stiftsgymnasium Kremsmünster in Upper Austria. The quartet has reinvented itself since then from indie rock to R’n’B pop band.


>> "the time has passed very quickly" one exiting part of our show at KammgarnHAVE A LOOK :_)recorded/cut: clemens haaslightdesign; gerd schneider

Posted by BAUCHKLANG vocal groove project on Wednesday, October 23, 2013


This article is brought to you by the Austrian Tourism Board, and was produced in partnership with Travel Agent Central’s sales team. Travel Agent Central’s editorial team played no part in developing the article.

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Austrian Tourist Office
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Sponsored by Austrian Tourist Office | October 8, 2015
Mozart may be heard in the Austrian Vienna Opera House, but many Millennials are quickly filling concert venues and clubs abound in Austria.