Stift Melk - UNESCO-Welterbe

Summer Concerts

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"Since 1996 Melk abbey’s Summer Concerts have enriched the region’s cultural program… taking place in three wonderful Baroque settings in the monastery: in the garden pavilion, in the abbey church and in the summer sacristy.”  Father Martin Rotheneder

The Summer Concerts promise exhilarating musical experiences. Alongside the evening concerts in the garden pavilion and in the abbey church, the Sunday matinees invite guests to an interaction of nature and music. Well-known classical pieces as well as works by composers from different eras of music history make for a varied concert program.

In the garden pavilion – a place for musical dreams
So great was the yearning for all things exotic in the Baroque age that the “whole world” was brought into the garden pavilion with the help of paintings. In 1763/64 the rooms of the pavilion were decorated with imaginative frescoes by Johann Wenzel Bergl.

In the abbey church – a glimpse into Heaven
Melk abbey church is considered to be a high Baroque masterpiece. When architecture and music come together, maybe even with special light effects, every evening there becomes a “feast for the eyes and the ears”.

In the summer sacristy – a special gem
The summer sacristy was built by the architect Jakob Prandtauer already in 1701, and is therefore the first evidence of Baroque architecture in Melk abbey.

Music plays an important part in daily monastic life. “He who sings, prays twice”, as the saying goes. Prayer and music have probably always formed a whole to which many note manuscripts in the monastery archives testify, some of them dating back to the Middle Ages. Music was more than an integral part of liturgical functions (Masses, vespers etc.). It was equally important for concerts because of secular occasions, like the visit of a member of the high aristocracy or anniversaries. The musical heritage collected in the music archives constitutes a great treasure and is carefully tended to. Pieces of music from the archives are being performed on a regular basis in Melk abbey, as well as works by contemporary composers.