German Government To Review Structures At Bayreuth Festival

By Dejan Vukosavljevic
(Credit: Tobias Koch)

The German federal government intends to review the structures of the Bayreuth Festival, per the German Frankenpost media.

The German federal government is one of the largest shareholders of the Bayreuther Festspiele GmbH, owning 29 percent of the shares in the organization. The State of Bavaria and the Society of Friends of Bayreuth have the same stake in the governing capital. The federal government recently pledged a further 84.7 million euros for the renovation of the festival hall, which will cost around 178 million euros.

“If you recognize the difficulties, you shouldn’t put the solution on the back burner,” said Minister for Culture Monika Grütters to the German Press Agency in Berlin.

“My concern is that there are sensible and effective structures in Bayreuth,” added Grütters. “It’s not just about who has how much say, but above all about how we reach the audience. You just have to ask: Will the debt of a nationally and internationally significant opera festival be honored? Are the expectations of the audience adequately taken into account? Are the structures suitable so that the highest level of artistic performance can be achieved?”

Berlin authorities did note that there is no intention to question the prominent position of the Wagner family in Bayreuth.

“At the Bayreuth Festival, the role of the family must and should be properly appreciated,” said Grütters. “The family rightly defends their right to participate. The question is more whether the current statutes and partnership agreements are still up to date today.”