Vienna Media News

Colorful tiles on the roof of St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna

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Vienna Media News 12/2020 A Concert for Millions

On January 1, 2021, Riccardo Muti will be wielding the conductor’s baton in the Golden Hall of the Musikverein for what must be the most famous concert in the world – which is still going ahead despite the pandemic, albeit without an audience inside the venue. Given the 40 million viewers it attracts worldwide, “it would be unthinkable from an international perspective not to go ahead with the concert,” explained Director of the Vienna Philharmonic Daniel Froschauer in an interview with the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation (ORF). “For me, the concert is a message we send out into the world.” The concert schedule, which was finalized in February 2020, will play out as planned, with a strong focus on the Strauss dynasty.

One new development, however, is that viewers around the world will have the chance to have their applause featured in the live broadcast. After registering at www.mynewyearsconcert.com, the applause they record on their computer, tablet or smartphone will be audible on the ORF broadcast when it is relayed live from a sound system set up inside the Musikverein.

In Riccardo Muti, the organizers of the 2021 New Year’s Concert have engaged a conductor whose close cooperation with the Vienna Philharmonic spans several decades. It is Muti’s sixth time in charge of the prestigious musical highlight, having previously taken his place on the podium in 1993, 1997, 2000, 2004 and 2018. This lighthearted and festive concert, featuring pieces from the rich repertoires of Johann Strauss (father and son) and their contemporaries, will be broadcast live in more than 90 countries worldwide.

The Golden Hall at the Musikverein has superb acoustics, and is regarded as one of the world’s most beautiful concert venues. For this year’s New Year’s Concert, the historicist temple to the muses will once again feature stunning floral displays, as custom dictates.

  • New Year’s Concert by the Vienna Philharmonic, Jan 1, 2021, Musikverein, Musikvereinsplatz 1, 1010 Vienna, www.wienerphilharmoniker.at

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Helena Hartlauer
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