The Sound of Austria

By Amanda Little

The hills are alive with the sound of music, but nobody in Austria will understand what that means, because most have never seen The Sound of Music.

While Austria is known for being the home of classical music - Mozart was born in Salzburg while Beethoven, Berg, Strauss, and Haydn spent time and performed in Vienna - the popular 1965 American film is not commonly known in Austria.

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In Salzburg, tourists and fans can still see the iconic pavallion where Liesel and Rolf have their kiss in the rain, the spectacular Schloss Leopoldskron that served as the exterior for the Von Trappe home, the magnificent Mirabell Gardens where Maria and the children sang Do Re Mi, and more. But that isn't the true draw for this melodic country.

Those looking for the greats in Austria just have to visit the capital, Vienna. There, they can visit beautiful concert halls and theaters where famous musicians have performed, and many more still play in today. Mozart fans can stop in at the stunning Schoenbrunn Palace, where Mozart presented his first concert at the age of six, or the Rauhensteingasse, where Mozart spent his last years and left his last unfinished piece, Requiem.

The Mozart Memorial in Vienna's Hofburg Palace gardens and the Mozart Museum both offer history on his life, but those looking to walk in his footsteps can visit Cafe Frauenhuber where he performed when his audiences abandoned him.

Continue exploring Austia's rich music scene at the Pasqualati House in Vienna where Beethoven lived for eight years. His former home is now a small museum with 14 rooms of exhibition of the famed musician's life. While he was born in Bonn, Germany, he did perform at the Vienna Opera House for audiences just as large as Mozart's in his heyday. Elegant musical performances are still very much a part of the culture in Austria, so be sure to buy tickets in advance to revel in the melody.

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