Salzburg - Stage of Culture

Salzburg Festival Halls

Rock Riding School Salzburg
Festival District Salzburg

The so-called festival district is located at the foot of the Mönchsberg.


The Small Festival Hall was built in 1924/1926. The Large Festival Hall was built to designs by Clemens Holzmeister from 1956-1960. The Felsenreitschule (Rocky Riding School) was built in 1693 after plans by Fischer von Erlach. Site of the annual Salzburg Festival's main performances. The Horse Pond was built in 1695 by Michael Bernhard Mandl.Three theaters under one roof and each with its own flair: the Salzburg Festival is happy to have its three main stages within close proximity.


The Large Festival Hall was built after plans by the Austrian architect, Clemens Holzmeister, and was inaugurated by Herbert von Karajan in 1960. The façade of the Baroque horse stables, designed by Fischer von Erlach, were retained, as were parts of the intermission foyers. The building seats an audience of 2,177 with an excellent view of the stage. The Large Festival Hall is used for operas and festive concerts. The orchestra pit is the work of the stage designer, Richard Peduzzi. The portal of the main stage can be moved between 14 and 30 meters.The (not-so) Small Festival Hall has 1,324 seats and standing room for 60. It was temporarily built in 1924 and underwent numerous architectural changes - last adapted by Hans Hofmann and Erich Engels. The entrance hall is decorated with a famous fresco painted by Anton Faistauer in 1926.


The Felsenreitschule (Rocky Riding School) was built over 300 years ago to train the archbishop's cavalry. The foyer displays a 700 m² fresco of a riding technique called "Turkenstechen". The premises have been occupied by the Salzburg Festival since 1926. The open-air theater is ideally suited for operas and concerts and also for the spoken theater. It seats a total of 1,549.


The Cathedral Square, the venerable courtyard of the Cathedral, has been the magnificent stage setting for the traditional "Everyman" since 1920. The statues of the beautifully designed fa?ade of Salzburg's Cathedral unites the international and the local church: Peter and Paul with the Salzburg patrons St. Rupert and Virgil. Above them the Four Evangelists, on the pediment Christ flanked by Moses and Elijah. A statue of the Virgin Mary, commissioned by Archbishop Sigismund Graf Schrattenbach and sculpted by Wolfgang and Johann Baptist Hagenauer from 1766 to 1771, is located in the center of the square.


The exquisite Large Hall of the Mozarteum was ceremoniously opened in 1914 and seats 807. The Festival uses this stage for concerts.The Landestheater with its 732 seats was inaugurated in 1893 and renovated in 1978. It is considered an ideal theater. Five works by Thomas Bernhard were originally performed here.The University Church, designed by Fischer von Erlach and consecrated in 1707, is a popular setting not only for classical, sacred music but also for complicated pieces of music by modern composers. Sacred music concerts are also held in the Cathedral and in St. Peter's Church.


Copyright images: Christian Schickmayr & Tourismus Salzburg GmbH