At the general assembly on 15 April, the shareholders of the Gstaad Menuhin Festival & Academy AG learned that last season had been a record year. The programme was called "Alps" and 25,000 tickets were sold. Now, a new programme is about to begin: "Paris".
President Aldo Kropf was full of praise when he addressed the shareholders in the Landhaus on Monday, summing up the past festival season. Also, reports from the following people testified to the continuing success: Hans-Ueli and Marlène Tschanz (fundraising & events), Christine von Siebenthal (head of marketing & communication), Reto von Siebenthal (construction and infrastructure), Caroline Schwenter (friends of the festival) and, last but not least, the artistic director, Christoph Müller.
In addition to praising these heads of department, Kropf commended the work of Corinne Reuteler, in charge of ticketing and Beat Marmet, responsible for artists' logistics. He also referred to the 500 or so volunteers and to the board of trustees, whose help had been indispensable to the summer music festival. The many individual companies such as the academies, the orchestra, the digital platform and the tent, all run together like cogwheels in perfect harmony, making a proud whole – one big, homogenous event that's certainly not lacking in musical surprises.
Over the Paris rooftops
As Christoph Müller plainly stated, last year's success would be hard to beat. However, he wants the Paris theme to arouse curiosity about the French style and its typical characteristics, like a kind of musical declaration of love for France and its Paris metropolis. While the “Alps” largely promoted itself, “Paris” will certainly take more effort.
Fête des Vignerons
The Fête des Vignerons takes place once every 25 years and, this year, the Gstaad Festival Orchestra has been closely involved. The orchestra will play along to scenes from the big events taking place in the 6000-seater stadium. The two-hour performance about the life of a winemaker over four seasons has around 20 different scenes accompanied by 20 different pieces of music. Müller expects this to be a great marketing opportunity – a free appearance. The Fête des Vignerons is financing not only the Gstaad Festival Orchestra, but also the festival itself and the recorded music. With such a positive build-up to the marketing, although this year’s programme may have less popular music than the "Alps", it should still be a successful start to the season.
Based on AvS / Lotte Brenner
Translated by Justine Hewson