Helga Rabl-Stadler has been president of the Salzburg Festival since 1995. The former tourist office bureaucrat, now 67, has counted in and out several changes of artistic regime. She is due to step down in 2017 but the local political leadership have announced they are supporting safe Helga (centre) for another term.
Helga herself, however, has said in an interview that she ‘sees no reason to stay on’. Confused? That’s how the game is played in Austria.
In the same interview, Helga says she had to get rid of Gerard Mortier and Alexander Pereira because they couldn;t accept a woman as boss. The director she really liked was the irreproachably mediocre Peter Ruzicka.