Franz Welser-Möst Given Major Award at Salzburg Festival

By David Salazar
(Credit: Julia Wesely)

After a performance of “Elektra” on August 17, 2020, conductor Franz Welser-Möst was awarded with the Ruby Festival Brooch at the Salzburg Festival.

The award was presented to the conductor on his 60th birthday by Salzburg Festival President Helga Rabl-Stadler.

Welser-Möst made his debut with the Festival back on August 29, 1985 in a concert featuring works by Mozart and Haydn. The first opera he conducted at festival was
Rusalka” in 2008; he led five performances. Other operas he has led include “Der Rosenkavalier (12 performances),” “Fidelio (six),” “Die Liebe der Danae (five),” “Lear (four),” and “Salome (nine).”

In sum, has appeared 68 times with the festival leading 41 opera showcases and 27 concerts; per an official press release by the end of 2020, he will add another six opera performances to his total with the current run of “Elektra.”

“Franz Welser-Möst has given the Salzburg Festival true moments of glory, thanks to his profound knowledge of Richard Strauss’ music and his perfect symbiosis with the Vienna Philharmonic,” Artistic Director Markus Hinterhäuser stated in an official press release, noting Welser-Möst’ particular association with Strauss’ work.

Other recipients of the Ruby Festival include Christa Ludwig, Christian Stückl, Jürgen Flimm, Riccardo Muti, Mariss Jansons, Anne-Sophie Mutter, and Daniel Barenboim.