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The “Oscar” has gone to Austria 43 times. Mozart, the New Year concert and “The Sound of Music”, one of the most watched films in history, have long characterised the musical image of Austria. But the spotlight is now increasingly on young acts, playing in front of sold-out halls abroad. Around 17% of all music industry income is invested in “A&R (Artist & Repertoire)”, in establishing new talent. The music, film and entertainment sector in Austria is in perpetual motion and has international success.

Austria's exceptionally rich and varied music history has resulted in the country playing a key role in the music industry today. The Austrian music market ranks 16th in a global comparison.

There are more than 22,000 people working in the music industry in Austria, covering every genre of music. Their foreign income is highest in the neighbouring German-speaking countries but they are also very successful in other parts of Western Europe. 

The domestic film industry consists of more than 2,300 companies. The overwhelming majority of them have fewer than ten employees and have a very small-scale structure.  

There are around 20 film festivals in Austria every year. The largest and most well-known is the Viennale in Vienna which has attracted more than 80,000 visitors each year since it was established in 1963.  The programme includes a mix of documentaries, art house films and debuts for young directors. 

Film production companies find ideal conditions in Austria: a unique, spectacular landscape, historical towns and cities and a perfect infrastructure. In 2015, 176 international productions from every continent applied for permission to film in Vienna. The most requests came from Germany, followed by the United Kingdom, Finland, Japan, Brazil and China. More than 80 Indian productions have been implemented in Tirol over the last few years. 

Innovative spirit

The music and film industry in Austria is increasingly working with the latest technologies. Over the last few years, numerous start-ups have been established that are specialised in the browsing, finding, recommendation and enjoyment of music. In addition, there is also an increasing number of companies who deal with the latest technological developments such as immersive audio, virtual reality, deep learning and artificial intelligence. 

An Austrian company developed a technology that makes it possible to send audio signals without any perceptible delay. The virtual reality solutions of this company make it possible for musicians who are thousands of kilometres away from one another to practise together. And virtual reality concerts are also being implemented by these pioneers.

A unique software for the sale of digital music to more than 500 download and streaming services worldwide comes from Austria. The company started in 2006 with the development of a sales software that makes it possible for music labels and musicians to sell their music in large-scale portals without having to deal with the technical requirements or collection. 

The global leader in funicular railways for cameras has its registered office in Austria. Its innovative products facilitates tracking shots at great altitude over long distances. It comprises some basic modules and their combination permits adaptation to individual recording situations. 

Musicians from all over the world are permanently looking for suitable rehearsing rooms, in particular when they are travelling. A platform developed in Austria helps them in that hosts and musicians are brought together. With an easy-to-use "search-book-play" app, rehearsal rooms can be booked for one or more hours, in the nearby vicinity or in foreign cities, with just a few clicks.

For more than 25 years, the documentary series "Universum" with its major mini-series about animals and nature and innovative individual films from the thematic areas of history, science and technology has been inspiring a broad audience. Austrian "Universum" in-house productions are sold in up to 100 countries around the world. The international cooperation partners of the Austrian producers also include the BBC.

As one of the leading opera houses, Vienna State Opera offered the world's first opera streaming in 2013, with 45 live streams per year, two channels, synchronous second screen content and a regular programme in UHD set the global benchmark for culture digitalisation.

Creative training

The SAE Institute, established in 1976, offers an industry-specific training that meets the requirements of the global creative media industry. It covers the media areas of audio, film, animation, games development, music business and web. The Bachelor's and Master's programmes are offered in collaboration with Middlesex University in London. The SAE Institute has 54 locations, among others in London, Berlin, Munich, Paris, Barcelona, New York and Los Angeles.

Training at the music universities and conservatories in Austria has an excellent reputation internationally. Austria is the destination for many trainee musicians and music students. The University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna and the music universities in Graz and Salzburg are internationally renowned.