>I should be writing about the recent news coming out of Salzburg regarding the Easter Festival, but I haven’t got the full story yet (it’s still developing.) The story so far is that the CEO of the Easter Festival (a separate entity from the Summer Festival, but basically the same offerings — operas and concerts with top names from the classical music world) pocketed large sums of money over the last eight years, including illegally taking cuts from patron donations and sending the money off to foreign banks. It seems that he had his tax adviser (I’m really hoping she isn’t the one I use), his technical director and his lawyer in on the deal in some way or another. The technical director, named in several newspapers as one of the main culprits, jumped from a bridge this week in a suicide attempt (he survived and is in ICU.) He had been fired recently for having illegally taken work outside of the festival (and hauling in hundreds of thousands of euros.)
It is only fitting that Austria’s financial scandal would involve opera, one of its biggest industries. And the Salzburg festivals absolutely drip with money and prestige.