About the 2021 work

"Fürchte dich nicht!"

Thoughts on the Salzburg Advent Singing 2024

This Salzburg Jubilee Advent Singing takes us back in time to the birth of Christ. The year is 3760 according to the Jewish calendar. Rabbi Jacob, who lives with the shepherds in the fields, tells of a promise made by the prophet Isaiah, who said: „Fürchte dich nicht…“! At the same time, two Jewish women in Nazareth are engrossed in a conversation. Anna, a widow with a strong faith, tells her beautiful daughter and temple maiden Mary that she and Joachim have long been denied the blessing of a child. In despair at this serious disgrace, Joachim withdrew to the desert to do penance. After 40 days of quarantine, his prayers were answered. An angel appeared to both of them independently of each other and brought the good news, beginning with the words: „Fürchte dich nicht…“!

These two events, accompanied by music and song, mark the beginning of this new Advent carol service. Ten days’ walk away, on the outskirts of Bethlehem, shepherds tend their sheep in the midst of cypress and olive groves. The area is considered sacred and holy. Only sheep intended for a sacrificial ritual in the temple graze here.

We go back to the time when people such as Rabbi Jacob, the widow Anna, the temple maiden Mary, her base Elizabeth, the carpenter Joseph and the shepherds all followed the Tanakh as devout Jews. In the context of our Christian traditions, this Advent carol will be a fascinating imaginary journey into the world of life and faith of our older Jewish sisters and brothers, from whom Christ was born.

A Salzburg Advent Singing with new approaches that carry the persistent power of hope for peace among people, even in our turbulent times. With compositions from the pen of Shane Woodborne, with music by Tobi Reiser and numerous vocal and folk music treasures from our Alpine cultural region.

Hans Köhl
Overall direction
Textbook, program

This Salzburg Advent Singing could not be performed in front of an audience due to the pandemic!

Fürchte dich nicht 2021

Picture gallery

Leading Team

Hans Köhl

has been the main director of the Salzburg Advent Festival since the turn of the millennium. He, who is also the managing director and chairman of the organizer Salzburger Heimatwerk eG, is where all the threads of this successful cultural event come together.

Every year, he conceives new scenic-musical complete works, writes the books, takes care of the folk music components and develops new complete works in close cooperation with the respective composer. Tireless striving for new approaches and creative implementations incorporating valuable traditions are the driving forces behind his successful work.

Aware of his responsible, traditional heritage, the Salzburg native from the Styrian Enns Valley sets the highest possible artistic standards for himself and all those involved. Under his leadership, the Salzburg Advent Singing always surprises with new experiences of the Advent event surrounding the birth of Christ.

Shane Woodborne

Studied cello and piano in Cape Town, South Africa and at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg. During his studies, he increasingly devoted himself to composition. He was commissioned to write works for the Beethoven-Gesellschaft Bremen, the Zeitfluss-Festival Salzburg, Jeunesse and the Lindesnes Chamber Music Festival Norway, among others. These include works for choir and orchestra as well as song cycles, solo works and chamber music. The musician and composer has been a member of the Camerata Salzburg since 1992.

Shane Woodborne has composed numerous musical works for the Salzburg Advent Singing „Da hat vor dem Stall der Äpfibam bliaht“ (1999 und 2007), „Siehe ich bin des Herren Magd“ (2002), „Maria“ (2009), „Sehnsucht“ (2013), „Schnee in Bethlehem“ (2015), „Der blinde Hirte“ (2017) und für das neue Werk „Fürchte dich nicht!“ (2020)

Herbert Böck

First musical training as a Viennese choirboy – soprano soloist. Studied conducting, oboe, composition and music education at the Vienna University of Music. 1985-1989 solo oboist with the Vienna RSO. 1989-1998 artistic director of the Vienna Singakademie with conducting duties at the Vienna Concert Hall.

Chief conductor of the Vienna Jeunesse Orchestra, artistic director of the Concentus Vocalis, since 1995 professor of choral and ensemble conducting at the Mozarteum University Salzburg. 2007 Foundation of the Mozarteum University Chamber Choir.

Collaborations with the Vienna Philharmonic Wind Ensemble, Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg, Vienna Chamber Orchestra, Lower Austrian Tonkünstler Orchestra, Orchestra Santa Cecilia die Roma, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra Ljubljana, Radio Orchestra Budapest, Symphony Orchestra Latvia, RIAS Chamber Choir Berlin, Berlin Radio Choir, MDR Choir Leipzig, WDR Choir Cologne, among others. Numerous concert tours throughout Europe, to Russia, Israel and the USA.

Herbert Böck has been a congenial conductor for the Salzburg Advent Singing since 2001, who appreciates and respects folk music as a basis and for whom working with choirs is a much-loved task.

Daniela Meschtscherjakov

Daniela Meschtscherjakov grew up in Frankfurt, graduated from high school there and came to Salzburg in 2000 to complete her acting training at the Schauspielhaus Salzburg. From 2000-2008 she worked as an actress at the Schauspielhaus Salzburg and has been working as a freelance actress and director in the Salzburg area since the beginning of 2009. She does theater pedagogy for the Theater Salzburg and is also head of the youth club there.

Acting roles include “”Heute abend Lola Blau” by Georg Kreisler and “Mondscheintarif” by Ildiko von Khürthy, as well as Beatrice in “”Viel Lärm um nichts” by William Shakespeare. Her directorial work includes, among others: “Das Hausgeisterhaus” by Peter Blaikner and “Krabat” by Otfried Preussler at the Theater Salzburg, as well as “Jedermann” by Hugo von Hofmannsthal at the Fortress Hohensalzburg.

She celebrated a very successful debut as a drama director at the Salzburg Advent Singing in 2019 at the Great Festival Hall.


Hellmut Hölzl

has been giving the Salzburg Advent Festival an unmistakable corporate design with his costume designs for many years. As the former head of the men’s tailoring department at the Salzburg Festival for many years, he is a master of perfection. Each production requires new costumes that correspond to the current directorial concept and, above all, support the personality of the performers.

The costumes are precisely tailored to the characters of the respective actors, shepherd children and singers and are handmade. “This task at the Salzburg Advent Singing is particularly intensive but also interesting and a great challenge for a classical costume designer,” says Hellmut Hölzl

Dietmar Solt

Born in Salzburg, he studied stage and costume design at the Mozarteum University under Heinz Bruno Gallee. He has worked as an assistant and subsequently as a freelance stage and costume designer at opera houses in New York, San Francisco, London, Buenos Aires, Cape Town, Berlin and elsewhere, and regionally at the Danube Festival, Art Concerts, Wagner Festivals Wels, Opera Festival Jennersdorf and elsewhere.

Since 2001, he has been developing the stage sets for the Salzburg Advent Singing in the Great Festival Hall. In doing so, he incorporates his international experience into the realization of new requirements. With the help of his highly motivated team, fascinating spaces and venues are created. The immensely wide but not very deep space in front of the “Iron Curtain” of the Festival Hall has to be adapted to the scenes and accompanied in a supportive and seemingly imperceptible way. Due to the new productions of the Salzburg Advent Singing every year, a new stage interpretation is always required.


Stefan Sperr

is the personality who often works in the background, contributing important strategic and financial considerations for the Salzburg Advent Singing. As deputy chairman and board member of the Salzburg Heimatwerk, Stefan Sperr is responsible for accounting and controlling. Only a solid economic basis makes the artistic success of the Salzburg Advent Singing possible.

Thanks to strict financial management, it has always been possible to get by without public subsidies. However, this feat has only been possible thanks to the many idealistic commitments of those involved and the large number of visitors to this traditional event. A recent study by the Salzburg Chamber of Commerce shows that Salzburg’s economy generates an additional gross national product of over 10 million euros thanks to the Salzburg Advent Singing.

Work 2021


People and their actors

Born in Lengau, Upper Austria, she completed her master’s degree in singing with distinction at the Mozarteum Salzburg. She completed international masterclasses with Horiana Branisteanu, Edda Moser, Helena Lazarska, Margreet Honig, Gerhard Kahry and Wolfgang Holzmair.

Koncert tours have repeatedly taken the lyric soprano to Germany, to the Hugo Wolf Festival in Slovenia and to London, where she sang J.S.Bach’s St. John Passion with the Salzburg Bach Society and the Baroque Orchestra of the Royal School of Music. She has also appeared in numerous staged productions at the Salzburg State Theater and the Salzburg Festival.

Eva Maria Schinwald made her debut at the Salzburg Advent Singing in 2014 as “Maria” in the production “Der Sterngucker”. In 2017, she delighted the audience as an angel in “Der blinde Hirte”.

Bernhard Teufl (Tenor)

received lessons in clarinet and singing at the Musikum Salzburg for many years and graduated with honors in both subjects. He studied genetics and theology at the University of Salzburg and singing at the Mozarteum University, was a member of the Salzburg Bach Choir and has already taken part in many opera performances and concerts at the Salzburg Festival, the Mozart Week and the Easter Festival. He has also been a regular soloist at concerts and masses in many churches in Salzburg and beyond.

Since 2007, Bernhard Teufl has been impressively singing and playing the role of “Josef” at the Salzburg Advent Singing Festival and was rewarded with thunderous applause at his 200th solo performance in the Great Festival Hall in Salzburg in 2019.


Elisabeth Eder (soprano)

Elisabeth Eder, singer and harpist, was born in Salzburg and comes from the musical Eder-Hutter family from Grossarltal. She enjoyed her artistic, pedagogical, scientific and musicophysiological training at the Mozarteum University Salzburg, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London and the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna (all seven degrees with distinction).

Elisabeth has demonstrated her versatility with various orchestras, in the Salzburg Bach Choir, as a chamber musician and as a soloist at national and international level. Highlights of her artistic career include first prizes at international and national competitions on the harp, concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Sir Simon Rattle, an invitation to Edinburgh in 2020 to represent Austria as a singer at the Young Professional’s Program as part of the Eurovox Congress, scholarships and awards at the respective universities and numerous concert tours to the major concert halls and opera houses in Europe.

Elisabeth Eder teaches singing and pedagogical-scientific courses at the Mozarteum University Salzburg.

Since 2018, she has performed the role of the Angel as a solo soprano at the Salzburg Advent Singing in the Great Festival Hall.


Martina Gmeinder (Mezzosopran)

The mezzo-soprano Martina Gmeinder touches people deeply with her warm, sonorous timbre, which is balanced in all registers. She is convinced that just a few notes can make the world a little brighter. Her interpretations are characterized by great musicality and charisma; the audience always has an inspiring effect on her.

Martina Gmeinder has a broad oratorio repertoire. Her passion is the piano song of the 19th to 21st centuries. This also includes first and world premieres.
Her artistic career has taken her from Europe to Japan. Martina Gmeinder has been a soloist in the role of Elisabeth at the Salzburg Advent Singing since 2018.


Monika Lugner

already had the desire as a young girl to slip into different roles as an actress. However, as a single mother working in tourism, she had other things to worry about and her childhood dream of acting in the theater became a distant dream. It was only 10 years ago that the talented amateur actress had the opportunity to join the “Theaterverein Hof” near Salzburg. Since then, she has played various roles in character plays and comedies with joy and passion. She played ” Jedermann’s Mutter” in the “Kulturbühne” production at the Fortress Hohensalzburg. Unusual, but characteristic of Monika Lugner was her great stage success as “Boandlkramer” in the story of Brandner Kaspar.

Edwin Hochmuth (Bariton)

He grew up in the Zillertal in Tyrol and graduated from the Sachers drama school in Innsbruck in 2006. He then had numerous engagements in Tyrol, South Tyrol and Switzerland. Important engagements include the Kellertheater Innsbruck, the Tiroler Folk Theatre in Telfs, the Tiroler Landestheater and the Theater in der Effingerstraße in Bern. Edwin has also appeared in front of the camera several times, including in “K2 der Schicksalsberg” – “Das Programm” – Rise up and Dance and “Zersplitterte Nacht”.

Edwin Hochmuth is also a qualified social care worker. However, his passion clearly lies in theater and on stage. In the summer of 2019, he took to the stage at the Telfser Volksschauspielen. He has been part of the Salzburg Advent Singing since 2012, with interruptions, and has become a favorite of the shepherd children in recent years, which is why he is once again in close contact with the children this year as Rabbi Jakob. Edwin describes himself as an all-rounder and is a likeable team player.


Carolin Altenberger (harmonica), Lena Bernhofer (flute),
Julia Burkali (violin),
Leonard Burkali (bassoon),
Johannes Doppler (trombone, dulcimer),
Vinzent Fernsebner (contrabass),
Marie Hollergschwandtner (guitar,violin),
Anna Lechner (flute),
Niklas Mischkulnig (violin),
Felix Neureiter (clarinet),
Magdalena Neureiter (flute),
Elisa Oberkofler (harp),
Sarah Oberkofler (horn),
Magdalena Öschlberger (flute),
Johanna Renzl (violin),
Sebastian Scheibner (flugelhorn),
Schneeweis Lisa (violin),
Rebekka Singer (clarinet),
Fabian Stockinger (guitar),
Marie Juliane Stöger (clarinet)

Gudrun Köhl-Korbuly,
Simon Haitzmann,
Edwin Hochmuth (Rabbi Jakob),
Markus Helminger,
Daniela Meschtscherjakov

Vocal ensembles

Lisa Maria Stadler (mezzosoprano); Lg: Johanna Dumfart (soprano, arrangements);
Sebastian Fuchsberger (tenor); Josef Söllinger (bass)


80 Singer;
Rehearsal, Lg: Burgi Vötterl
umpire: Berta Wagner



Johannes Rohrer (zither),
Kerstin Schmid-Pleschonig (dulcimer),
Magdalena Kufer (contrabass),
Christian Gelfert (orgelportativ),
Heidi Grundner (harp),
Lg: Reinhold Schmid (guitar; arrangements)

Gundl Aggermann (flute),
Andrea Brucker (viola),
Timea Laczkò-Tòth (cello),
Lg: Maria Dengg (violin),
Burgi Vötterl (violin),
Magdalena Kufer (contrabass)


Hans Gerl (horn),
Christian Sperl (horn),
Erwin Wendl (trombone),
Thomas Höger (trombone),
Lg: Horst Hofer (trumpet, flugelhorn),
Zoran Curovic (trumpet, flugelhorn)


Lg: Gottfried Linsinger (oboe, cor anglais),
Gerti Hollweger (bassoon),
Anton Gmachl (clarinet)

Technology & equipment

Lg: Hubert Schwaiger;
Wolfgang Brunauer

Hans Köhl, Daniela Meschtscherjakov, Hubert Schwaiger

Lg: Edwin Pfanzagl-Cardone;
Werner Heidrich

Lg: Helmut Schauer

Joinery Alfred Laserer, Gosau

Hans Köhl und Stefan Sperr

Salzburger Heimatwerk eG