Opera Camps for Children and Youths

In cooperation with the Wiener Philharmoniker and with financial support from the Salzburg Foundation of the American Austrian Foundation (AAF)

The summer of 2016 will see the 10th edition of the highly popular Opera Camps – a cooperation between the Vienna Philharmonic and the Salzburg Festival. Enabling as many children and teenagers as possible to participate in this happy anniversary, we offer four Camps at the idyllic Arenberg Castle, each lasting several days – more Opera Camps than ever before! Music-loving children and teenagers from all over the world meet there without their parents and have experts from various artistic fields, educators and members of the Vienna Philharmonic introduce them to great operas in an age-appropriate manner. Their creative new interpretations of these operas are presented in final performances, some of them open to the public. For many participants, the musical experiences and human encounters during the Opera Camps are a highlight of their summer vacation, laying the foundation for a life-long love for musical theatre. Language barriers are non-existent, for the language of the Camps is: international!

Conceived and led by Hanne Muthspiel-Payer
('passwort:klassik', the Vienna Philharmonic’s music education programme)

Registration by January 18, 2016 at 1:00 pm!

The number of places is limited. Applicants will be informed whether they have a place by the end of February. Applications for the opera camps can only be submitted using our online application form. Written applications or applications made over the phone cannot be accepted.
The participation fee includes workshops, rehearsal visits, room and board, leisure time activities.
Bursaries are available for participants from low-income families.
Accomodation: Schloss Arenberg, Arenbergstrasse 10, 5020 Salzburg

I. Danae-Camp

on the opera Die Liebe der Danae by Richard Strauss
For children aged 10 to 14

Richard Strauss’ penultimate opera takes the audience to ancient Greece, the land of kings, princes and princesses. Jupiter, the father of the gods, once again mixes with humankind, wreaking havoc and playing fate. When he recognises that the power of Danae’s love is stronger than the temptation of gold, nothing stands in the way of a happy end for the opera. At the Opera Camp, we approach this fairy-tale story through playful re-enactment, and the stage workshop enables children to create their own props and parts of costumes under expert guidance. There is a lot to do, getting all the parts of this puzzle in place in time for the final performance on the last day! This makes the programme of diverse and child-appropriate frame-work activities, offered by a highly motivated young team of social pedagogues and music students, all the more important.

Sunday, July 24 (arrival till 04:00 pm) to Saturday, July 30, 2016
Fees: € 470,- each (Siblings pay each € 450,-)

Public Final Performance (free tickets):
Saturday, July 30 – 05:00 pm, Grosse Universitätsaula

II. Don Giovanni-Camp

on the opera Don Giovanni by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
For teenagers aged 13 to 16

The Don Giovanni Opera Camp is a highlight both for newcomers and ‘old hands’. After all, the focus here is on the world’s most famous lover. Things for young opera fans to look forward to when attending the dress rehearsal: on the one hand, there are many funny scenes; on the other hand, the story is about a murderous seducer of women who is punished severely for his deeds in the end. The music is wonderful, especially the duets and trios, when several figures sing their own thoughts at the same time, are unique. This music is also suitable for our Camp orchestra, which welcomes anyone who wants to make music with others. All instrumentalists are welcome, without exceptions! Of course, no Opera Camp would be complete without singing. In addition, we need imaginative and bright minds to come up with their own version of Don Giovanni, to be presented to the public on the last day of the Camp.

Sunday, July 31 (arrival till 04:00 pm) to Saturday, August 6, 2016
Fees: € 470,- each (Siblings pay each € 450,-)

Public Final Performance (free tickets):
Saturday, August 6 – 04:00 pm / republic

III. Faust-Camp

on the opera Faust by Charles Gounod
For young adults from 16 upwards

The past summers experience has shown that particularly interested teenagers and young adults are keen to immerse themselves for several days in the tale of an opera. Based on Goethes Faust, this opera is one of the most successful ones ever written. The tragedy is required reading in German-language schools, and here it comes to life: a man sells his soul to the devil in return for eternal youth and a beautiful woman. When Margarethes bitter end with all its consequences approaches, however, Faust regrets his deed. The figures and their actions are explored through role-playing, the participants can try out the singing roles, and selected orchestral passages are tailored to the instruments present. This Camp is characterised by an animated workshop atmosphere and exchange among young people. There is no public final performance.

Sunday, August 7 (arrival till 11:00 am) to Wednesday, August 10, 2016
Fees: € 290,- each

IV. Figaro-Camp

on the opera Le nozze di Figaro by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
For children aged 9 to 12

This opera resembles a tempestuous romantic comedy. Participants will attend the Festival’s dress rehearsal on the second day of the Camp, and therefore they delve into the opera’s action on their very first evening at Arenberg Castle. The dress rehearsal they witness at the Festspielhaus will inspire the entire week, motivating the children to present their own final performance. Our Camp focuses on the mistaken identities, the swapping of clothes and the funny everyday situations so characteristic of this opera. The children slip into the roles of Susanna, Figaro, Basilio, Barbarina and the other protagonists. In the workshop, they can craft, paint and sew. One central element is the Camp chorus and the children’s ensemble, for which the musical pieces will be sent out in time to be practiced in advance. The experienced team of pedagogical leaders ensures a diverse evening programme. Artistic and musical activities are led by experts, and the final performance can count on the highly professional help of members of the Vienna Philharmonic! 

Sunday, August 13 (arrival till 04:00 pm) to Friday, August 19, 2016
Fees: € 470,- each (Siblings pay each € 450,-)

Public Final Performance (free tickets):
Friday, August 19 – 04:00 pm / republic

All links to Programme for Children and Teenagers 2016





Supported by UNIQA

Come, come, come, let us leave the Town
And in some lonely place,
Where Crouds and Noise were never known,
Resolve to spend our days.
In pleasant Shades upon the Grass
At Night our selves we’ll lay;
Our Days in harmless Sport shall pass,
Thus Time shall slide away.

The Fairy Queen, Act I, Duet


This invitation to enter Titania’s fairy kingdom marks the beginning of this year’s children’s opera, The Fairy Queen. Thus, we invite our young friends to discover the Salzburg Festival as a magical place where music and theatre can be experienced intensely – and far away from daily life.
Apart from reduced tickets to regular performances for young visitors, it is mainly the special performance formats developed particularly for a young audience which help us awaken and strengthen the enjoyment and understanding of music and theatre: new children’s operas produced especially for Salzburg, the introductory workshops offering ‘Fun and Games with Purcell’, the opera camps we are offering this year for the tenth time in cooperation with the Vienna Philharmonic, various fringe programmes for specific age groups and projects for young adults as well.
We also actively support young artists: through our Salzburger Festspiele und Theater Kinderchor, the Young Singers Project and the Nestlé and Salzburg Festival Young Conductors Award – all of which present numerous public concerts and master classes.
Our greatest goal is to enable both groups – rising young artists and young Festival visitors – to meet each other, with unique experiences ensuing: when, for example, the members of the Young Singers Project find an enthusiastic young audience for their performances of the children’s opera, and the young audience, in turn, elicits outstanding artistic achievements from the singers.
There is much to discover at the Salzburg Festival, and we are delighted to present the following Children’s and Youth Programme for the 2016 season. May it bring our young friends joy and enthusiasm for opera, concerts and plays!