The Great Festival Hall, or Grosses Festspielhaus, is a huge auditorium designed by Clemens Holzmeister and is one of Salzburg’s most impressive venues. It was built in 1956, specifically to celebrate the Salzburg Festival, which took place in Austria that year. The hall was inaugurated on 26thJuly, 1960, with Richard Strauss performing the classic Der Rosenkavalier, which was conducted by Herbert von Karajan.
It is one of the largest stages in the world! It’s stretched over 100 meters (more than 300 feet) and the hall can seat up to 2,179 people. You can enter this magnificent building through its five bronze doors, the face of which is emblazoned by a latin motto, quoted from Thomas Michels. ‘The Muse’s holy house is open to those moved by song/divine power bears us up who are inspired’ The quote gives the visitor an idea of the kind of artistic displays that have taken place within the walls of this great hall.
Construction started in 1956, with 55,000 cubic meters of conglomerate rock carved out of the Monchsberg, to create an enormous backstage area. The architect had already built a Small Festival Hall during the 1920’s , which was another work of art and earned him distinction. This building was specially designed as a hall for festivals and had the original façade of the royal stables integrated into the structure. The stables were transformed into a break room. The floor is festooned with mosaic heads of horses, which is evocative of the room’s past use.
What makes this hall special is that different kinds of artwork can be found within the building, which is used as an opera house. Not only will you find gems such sculptures and paintings but you’ll be treated to lovely classical music if you come during a concert. There are two marble sculptures made by Wander Bertoni, titled ‘Theater’ and ‘Music’. Four large crosses, themed ‘Dreams with Wrong Solutions’ stand in all their glory, sculpted by Robert Longo. There are stunning mural paintings by Wolfgang Hutter and Rudolf Plattner that adorn the walls.
Throughout the year there are numerous musicals, operas and concerts performed here, leading people and paparazzi flocking to its doors, as cars line up to enter this magnificent venue in Hofstallgasse. Visiting this monument to art and music and experiencing a concert here will make anyone feel like a part of the city’s high society.
- Book in advance, it’s hard getting tickets on the day of the show.
- Ensure the concert or play you are going for is in the language of your preference.
- You can hire a tour guide to take you around the building.
- If there isn’t a concert going on, there’s nothing to do here expect admire the architecture.
- Recommendations: Visit the terrance and grab a beautiful view of the city.
Guided tour prices:
- Adults: 7 Euros
- Children (6-12): 4 Euros
- Children below 6: Free
- Prices for events vary depending on timings, kind of event and seating. Please refer official website for details.
- Timings vary depending on events. Please refer official website for details.
- Guided tours occur daily at 2 pm (50 minutes).
- Taxis available
- Buses are : 1, 4, 22, 10 to Herbert von Karajan Plat
- Bus stop Salzburg Ferdinand-Hanusch-Platz (Sigrist)
- Car/taxi for hire.
- St. Peterstifskeller
- Restaurant K&K
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44.25% of people who visit Salzburg include Grosses Festspielhaus in their plan
1 PM - 2 PM
68.29% of people start their Grosses Festspielhaus visit around 1 PM - 2 PM
2 Hrs 30 Minutes
People usually take around 2 Hrs 30 Minutes to see Grosses Festspielhaus
68.29% of people prefer walking in order to reach Grosses Festspielhaus
Beautiful grand stages and insightful tour.
The best experience in my whole life, The Magic Flute was just immaculate.
Enjoyable atmosphere. A great place to relax and to listen to some live music. The facilities on site were of good quality. Whlist the staff was friendly and welcoming. It is better to come a bit earlier...
There is certain mystique surrounding the Festspielhaus. Just like paying Homage to Wagner by getting to Bayreuth, one needs to get to Salzburg to channel one's own DNA linkage with Mozart, Herbert Von Karrian, & the other Greats if that's part of your earthly journey. Granted, the mandane, the pedestrian, the unexpected trauma, the stresses & tensions ,misunderstandings caused by loss in trasslations, etc.. are inevitable even amids the dreamlike EURO cloud. Just be prepped for the slights/unpleasant momemts - let it go & take the high road in order to be opened & capture some unexpected exquisite, sublime, transcandantal moments. You never be the same again. Just remmeber:" These Too Shall Pass!". Relax and enjoy.
An address for a genuine cultural experience