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John Cage, 1967
© Courtesy of John Cage Trust

Wien Modern

The Wien Modern festival has 34 performance dates and 30 venues to offer in its 31st edition. The event was founded by Claudio Abbado in 1988. Around 80 premieres and first performances are on the program. All of these can be heard and seen not only on the city's stages but also in universities and coffee houses.

Musical tightrope acts

This year's Wien Modern invites composers and performers to a wide range of boundary crossings and musical tightrope acts on the topic of "Safety". Visitors experience exciting moments when the musicians go to their limits, leave their comfort zone, risk mistakes, improvise in virtuoso style, close their eyes and make the impossible possible for a few precious moments.

"The more beautiful something is, the more risky it is," said Nikolaus Harnoncourt, "the most achievable beauty is just inches from the abyss - and the fall. That's where we have to go, we don't have to mess around in the safe zone."

The artists take this invitation at its word in the program for Wien Modern 2018. The best Viennese orchestras will be there: The Vienna Philharmonic opens the festival with a concert entirely without conductor, the Wiener Symphoniker presents the program "Panic", and the ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra devotes itself to "Chaos and Ecstasy".

As the most important production of the festival, Olga Neuwirth's big video concert installation theater The Outcast will be brought to the stage in a completely new form - to mark her 50th birthday. Music lovers can look forward to compositions by John Cage, Arnold Schönberg, Johannes Maria Staud, Harrison Birtwistle, Iannis Xenakis, Helmut Lachenmann, Alexander Skriabin, Friedrich Cerha and others.

Wien Modern 31

October 28 to November 30, 2018
30 different venues

Olga Neuwirth, Wien Modern 2018

Olga Neuwirth

© Lukas Beck
Julia Purgina, Wien Modern 2018

Julia Purgina

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