AKM is the highlight of my year. Doing what I love most in a family-like atmosphere in a place on earth that can’t be beaten is just the best. One makes friends so easily, because everyone shares their love of music, and also because it’s a small enough festival to mingle with everyone. A big part in all this is the awesome faculty. This faculty of incredible musicians coach so well, and at the same time are some of the best musical friends one could ever have. The festival culminates in the concerts where participants play far beyond their usual level. You’ll have enough love and energy in your system to last a whole year, and then you come back next year!
AKM 2013 was my first time travelling to Austria, and the first time I participated in a chamber music festival. I went there alone, not knowing anyone, but left as part of a large and warm family – and I still keep in contact with many of them! The environment was perfect for music-making, and I grew tremendously as a musician and as a person. Individuality was a valued quality at the festival, yet everyone could somehow merge the different personalities and create wonderful chamber music together. It was a very intimate setting so everyone made friends very easily with one another. One of the best parts of the festival included hikes around the stunningly beautiful region and “off” days when we went on little excursions. Needless to say, there was no lack of delicious, authentic Austrian specialty cooking to satisfy our cravings!
“AKM was a life changing experience for me. It was the perfect opportunity for my first overseas music experience. The staff is supportive and encouraging while providing incredible quality coaching. Liesing is the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen. It provided a look into another culture and the chance to experience MULTIPLE languages being spoken fluently around me. Because of my experience at AlpenKammerMusik I have officially decided to pursue a professional singing career and travel abroad in my continuation of schooling. I can’t imagine having a more encouraging or beneficial first music festival experience.”
During a chamber music event at home a pianist, noting my enthusiasm for playing chamber music with different instrumentalists, suggested AlpenKammerMusik to me. My philosophy was that Liesing, in the Lesachtal in the Karinthian mountains of southern Austria, at least offered nice views, clean air and nice walks even if music making might turn out to be less exciting than I expected. It was this combination of music and mountains, which made me decide to go. Every day we had at least once, and sometimes twice, rehearsals with a faculty member, who often also took part in the ensemble. We were a mix of amateur, and young professional string or wind players, pianists and singers, altogether 30 people and the repertoire / combinations were fascinating. The music school, in one of the old buildings of Liesing – formerly a fish restaurant – was our central meeting point; located in the center of Liesing opposite the church and the graveyard and next to one of the restaurants. Accommodation was at local bed & breakfast or hotels in walking distance to the music school. The overall open mindedness, kindness and the unrelenting and energetic enthusiasm and positive attitude of our teachers resulted in very high levels of performance and made this course rewarding for faculty and attendees alike. It greatly exceeded my expectations.
Nicole/bassoon/attendee AKM 2013
“AlpenKammerMuisk was a definite life highlight. The people (both attendees and faculty) are truly amazing and from all walks of cultures, life experiences, and ages. The learning environment was very supportive and noncompetitive which created the perfect setting to create masterful pieces of chamber music. I could not speak more highly of the quality of instruction I experienced from the faculty members at the festival. The musicians at AKM are truly top notch. Everyone at this festival is here because they love to create music together. For me, as a soon-to-be classroom music teacher, I will strive to create an environment like this where all can experience the power of making meaningful music together. I am forever grateful for the musical growth I experienced and the lifetime friendships formed at this festival. Besides the music, the location of the festival was out of this world. There is no place more beautiful than the Alps (if you have never seen them you must go!). I will also continue to crave the food I ate in Austria. It is so much better than the food in the States.”