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Audi China welcomes Salzburg Festival in Beijing

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Audi China welcomes Salzburg Festival in Beijing

- Audi China and Salzburg Festival introduce 2019 program to Chinese audiences
- Audi extends its involvement in Salzburg Festival until 2022
- Double anniversary in 2020: 100 years of Salzburg Festival and 25 years of partnership with Audi
- Audi China committed to developing young people in China

Beijing, December 6, 2018 – Today, Audi China and the Salzburg Festival held a joint press conference in Beijing to introduce the 2019 program for the Salzburg Festival to the Chinese audience. Audi has been main sponsor of the festival since 1995. Earlier this year the premium car brand and the Salzburg Festival extended their cooperation agreement until 2022.

In 2020, Audi will celebrate the 25th anniversary of its partnership with the Salzburg Festival. Audi has been promoting and supporting cultural activities around the world for five and a half decades. “It is very important to Audi to nurture such top-notch programs as the Salzburg Festival that promote the Arts in Society,” said Audi China President Mr. Thomas Owsianski. “We see this as an important part of our social responsibility.”

Today’s event is themed “In E Major” which refers to not only “the brightest and most powerful key” in music theory, but also the “electrification” trend in mobility. The Audi e-tron, the brand’s first all-electric production model, made its world premiere in San Francisco in September, marking the launch of the electrification initiative for the brand with the Four Rings.

The Salzburg Festival is a globally acclaimed festival that was founded in 1920 and attracts culture lovers from around the world to enjoy opera, theater and concerts in Salzburg, Austria. Since 2006, the Audi Night has become a highlight of the social calendar during the festival that attracts the guests of Audi to Salzburg, where unique flair and a superb cultural experience awaits.

In 2019, the Salzburg Festival hopes to kindle interest and curiosity in myths from antiquity, which the Festival co-founder Hugo von Hofmannsthal saw as a ‘magic mirror’. Seven operas embrace next year’s theme and inspire the thoughts about human existence, addressing themes of war, fight, sacrifice, revenge, guilt and atonement. Mozart’s Idomeneo is staged in a touching vision of the power of justice and reconciliation by Peter Sellars and Teodor Currentzis will be conducting. Simon Stone returns as director of Cherubini’s Médée starring Sonya Yoncheva as Medea, a passionate, strong, intelligent woman with the ability to love. Verdi’s darkest and one of his most fascinating works, Simon Boccanegra, is conducted by Valery Gergiev. Handel’s Alcina starring Cecilia Bartoli works as a kaleidoscope highlighting love in its different forms but also in its dark sides. Going down in history, the 2018 production of Strauss’ Salome, starring Asmik Gigorian and conductor Franz Welser-Möst, will be revived. In addition, Enescu’s Œdipe, Offenbach’s Orphée aux enfers will be staged, while Cilea’s Adriana Lecouvreur with Anna Netrebko as well as Verdi’s Luisa Miller with Plácido Domingo and Piotr Beczala will be performed concertante.

2019 will also be again an extraodinary year for the fans of orchestral music. The Vienna Philharmonic, the Salzburg Festival is privileged to call them “their” orchestra, will perform not only in operas but also play concerts conducted by Maestro Bernard Haitink together with Pianist Murray Perahia. Herbert Blomstedt will be conducting Mahler’s Symphony No.9. Riccardo Muti will honor Karajan by performing Verdi’s Requiem on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of Karajan’s death. Franz Welser-Möst and Daniel Barenboim will also be present with the Vienna Philharmonic. Invited to join the program from all over the world, the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, the Berliner Philharmoniker and the London Symphony orchestra enrich the concert program. Chamber concerts, lied recitals and solo recitals complete the concert program.

“The festival must not be just a series of events featuring as many stars as possible. Festivals have to create special artistic constellations that promise not only amusement and spectacle, but call for reflection,” explained Helga Rabl-Stadler, president of the Salzburg Festival.

Since 1994, the annual guest appearance of the Salzburg Festival in Ingolstadt is one of the highlights of the partnership between Audi and the Festival. The “Audi Summer Concerts” present top-class artists. This year, Catalan viol player Jordi Savall performed extracts from Tomás Luis de Victoria’s Officivm Hebdomadæ Sanctæ, together with the Capella Reial de Catalunya and Hespèrion XXI in the city of the AUDI AG headquarter.

2018 was another successful year of the Salzburg Festival. The 2018 program of the Salzburg Festival offered 206 performances at 18 venues in 42 days. Works of passion, rapture and ecstasy characterized the Festival summer which around 261,000 visitors from 85 Nations, of which 47 were Non-European, attended. Record in the history of the festival and a record in comparison to other cultural events is the seat percentage sold, reaching a total of 97%. With Mozart’s opera Die Zauberflöte, the Audi Night 2018 dedicated the highest-level performance to the guests from all over the world.

Today’s press conference also featured a performance by The Young Singers Project, a platform of the Salzburg Festival to promote young singers. Sopran Alina Adamski, Nika Gorič and baritone Ilya Kutyukhin presented the masterpieces from Mozart, Tchaikovsky and Verdi to the audiences.

Audi is a supporter of cultural programs in China. Together with its joint venture partner FAW-VW it has been a longtime sponsor of the Beijing Music Festival, which has brought world-class musicians to audiences in China.

Audi China is committed to developing young people in China. These efforts include the Audi FC Ingolstadt Soccer Camp, which gives 6 to 13-year-olds the chance to develop their soccer skills under the guidance of professional coaches from the FC Ingolstadt 04 team. In 2018 more than 200 children in Beijing participated in this program. Additionally, since 2014, Audi China has been supporting the development of electric vehicles of the Formula Student Racing Team of Tsinghua University, by providing funding, technical exchange, as well as organizational support and career opportunities.


Franziska Queling
Corporate Communications