Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the Saarburg International Music Festival & School?

A: The Saarburg International Music Festival & School is an intensive two-weeks summer program and concert series that gather musicians from many countries. The Festival is an independent, self-sustained organization under auspices of city of Saarburg.

Q: When is the application due?
A: The deadline for applications and registration fee is January 31, 2023

Q: When is deposit due?
A: By March 1, 2023, upon  receipt of Notification of acceptance, due by February 25, 2023

Q: Will applications be accepted after the deadline?
A: Yes, if student vacancies remain. The late fees will be applicable. We cannot guarantee a full integration into chamber music activities after deadline.

Q: How strict are the Deadlines?

A: In the interest of all participants, and to secure a smooth and timely planning of the program, we have to adhere absolutely strictly to ALL Deadlines, with NO exception or deviation. In ALL cases 11.59 pm of Central European Time on the preceding day to the relevant Deadline day is a cut off point. The time by which the potential participant/visitor has been informed, invited or made a decision to register for the program has no impact upon  Deadlines or late fees, unless some special arrangements were made in advance.

Without a deposit we are unable to reserve Hotel rooms. Unless the full tuition is paid (by April 20), we are unable to include an applicant into the process of selecting the repertoire and formation of the chamber groups. 

Festival reserves the right to change the applicant’s status from Active -Performing to Active NON-Performing in case full tuition has not been submitted by May 1st.

Q: How strict are the late fees?

A: In general, as it is the case with Deadlines, late fees are strictly enforced and are not a subject to any negotiation. The only exceptions are  special arrangements  made with the certain faculty in advance in regard to his/her students.

All Late Payment Surcharges are applicable for all participants and observers/visitors, independently from the time the person was informed, invited or made a decision to enroll into the program, unless some special arrangements were made in advance.

Q: Can I apply online?

A: Yes. The entire registration should be completed ONLINE (we no longer accept applications sent by snail-mail), including recordings. Please answer all fields in the online application form. Mark all items you are submitting on the “Application checklist” before submitting it. If you do not submit some items, please explain. Remember that ONLY complete applications (all items on the “Application Checklist”) can be processed.

Q: How are the students selected for admission?
A: The selection criteria includes the student’s current performing level and the previously and currently studied repertoire. All auditions are by Video  recordings only (YouTube/youku format ONLY). 

The recordings should not be older than 4 months and of the best possible Quality, as they constitute the main evaluation source of your current performing abilities for us.

Remember, that the quality of your audition recording may ultimately affect your status and chamber music  assignments.

 Q: Can you provide an example of audition recording program?
A: Your audition recording should contain two contrasting works of your choice. These may include a slow movement, a virtuoso piece, or two compositions from different historical periods, a set or two of vocal selections for the vocalists (one – cantabile, another one with florid passages). The total length of your recording should not accede 15 minutes. Pianists are required to submit one solo selection and one chamber music selection.

Q: What age groups participate in the Festival?
A: There is no official restriction of the age. The students may range from 8 to 50+ and include particularly talented children, advanced high school, college and graduate students and amateur musicians, as well as young and mature professionals. All students under age of 14 should be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Decisive point here is the performing level of the student.

Q: How important is communication/correspondence with the Festival staff?

A: Timely and responsible communication/correspondence with Festival staff is absolutely essential, starting with enrollment stage and going through the months preceding the Festival, as well as during entire Festival. 

Students from the age of 14 and above are required to familiarize themselves with all relevant information on the Festival’s website and to conduct personally entire communication with the Festival’s staff, as this is an important part of their preparation and self-training to be independent, responsible and capable of functioning well during the Festival proper.

The communication with students is copied to their respective teachers, to make teachers fully aware of an ongoing process and to intervene if needed.

Parents, except for the students under the age of 14, are respectfully requested NOT to attempt taking over students responsibility and communicate with the Festival’s staff instead. The exceptions are financial matters, when students do not yet maintain their own bank accounts. It is up to the students to share their communication with the Festival’s staff with their parents.

The Festival’s staff is always prepared to assist, however not with information covered by the Festival’s website. Students are encouraged to contact first of all their respective teachers, if they have any questions or uncertainties.

Festival reserves the right to decline/revoke the Notification of acceptance of any student in case of lack or poor communication on the part of the student in question. No refund of any payments in such case will be possible.

Q: Where will I live and eat during the Festival?
A: The residence is arranged in centrally located city Hotels (double occupancy with private bath).  Full breakfast will be served in the respective hotels, lunches are served for all participants at the Saarburg Gymnasium´s canteen. In the evening you are free to explore the local restaurants for a dinner or dine out of town if on day trip. You can find dining places in every price category. The servings are usually extremely generous.

We kindly ask ALL Festival guests (active participants, guest artists,  faculty  and long term – from 3 days on – visitors) to refrain from direct contacting the hotels regarding any booking issues. This is sole responsibility of the festival. The long term visitors related to any Festival participant, faculty/guest artist are requested not to use any of the internet search engines to book the accommodations but to follow the Festival´s clearly outlined “Visitors” policy. This policy is not a subject for any deliberation or negotiation.

Q: Will I have an opportunity to perform?
A: Yes, we shall make every effort that all qualified students participate in the concerts. Practically all applicants, accepted to the program as Active performing students,  perform in chamber groups. Solo performing opportunities are limited and reserved for the most talented students. Since the focal point of the festival is Chamber music, students interested exclusively in solo playing are discouraged from applying.

Q: Is recording of the concerts allowed?

A: Yes, we allow recording of the concerts as long as this is done in a very discrete way from the behind the audience position. However, any uploading of privately recorded performances, fully or partially, onto any public internet channels is strictly forbidden without a written consent of the Artistic Director of the Festival.

Privately made recording should be sent first to the Artistic Director. Any violation of this policy may have serious legal repercussions and fines.

Q: Is it possible to join the program without performing?

A: Absolutely. For those who applied after the registration has been closed or those who themselves do not feel quite to the performing level or were not admitted to the program as Active Performing participants, we offer to join the program as Active NON-performing students. The detailed description of this status is on our website, sections “Program information” and “Deadlines and fees”

We also offer the “Visitor” status. The detailed information on that  can be found on our website, sections “Program information” and “Deadlines and fees”

 Q: Will I need to bring my stand?
A: Yes, please bring your own stand.

Q: Do I need to bring any music scores?
A: Generally speaking, participants are responsible for securing printed music. If you plan to prepare repertoire with piano accompaniment or chamber music, you need to provide the score. The scores for out of print pieces will be emailed by the Festival.

Singers are provided with printed music in PDF format, sent via email.

All music must be securely held in a black binder. No lose copies of the music are allowed at any time (not in the lessons, not at the rehearsals/coachings and not at the concerts).

Q: Can I rent a cello or other instrument?

A: Yes, we can assist ONLY with contact information  for violin shops in a German city Trier and in Luxembourg city, which have some cellos and other string instruments for rent. The number of rental instruments is limited. If you want to rent the instrument, you would need to get in touch with the shops yourself and discuss all logistics and the arrangements yourself. The son of the shop owner in Trier, Albert, speaks English. You may need to be persistent and follow through on your initial email or phone call.

Mr. Reitz in Luxembourg also speaks English.

The interested in cello rental may consider an option of arriving one day early  and leaving one day late  to allow time needed to complete the logistics involved.

Please have an understanding, that Festival carries no liability whatsoever in regard to this issue.

Considering the fact that renting cello is not an imperative, but rather subject to a personal decision and the availability of good quality rental instruments, students should be prepared to bring their own cellos. The level of students performance may not be impeded by the possible inadequate quality of the rental instrument. Students and their respective teachers are required to verify the quality of instruments they intend to rent and carry full responsibility in this regard.

Here are contact Details for the shops:

Mr. Jean-Pierre Reitz shop in Luxembourg:, tel. +352/503235

Josef & Albert Kling violin shop in Trier, Germany,, tel. +49/ 651.48100 (shop), mobile (Albert):+49/176.63850720

Antoniusstr. 5, 54290 Trier; opening hours: Tues.-Friday 10 am-1 pm, 3 pm – 6 pm; Saturday – 10 am – 1 pm

The Festival cannot be involved in any logistic arrangements related to the rental instruments. This is a sole responsibility of the potential Festival participants.

 Q: What kind of clothes should I bring?
A: Bring your normal summer clothes, a swimming suit if you like and some warm clothes, perhaps a sweater or a jacket. The weather in this part of the world is unpredictable. You may check the internet for a long-term forecast prior to your departure. Your concert clothes should contain the regular for group performances: white/black top, black bottom, black shoes. Gentlemen should bring black jacket in case of cold weather. Otherwise, wearing of black jacket is not necessary. If you are scheduled to perform solo, bring your favorite concert clothes. Long skirts are preferable to pants for females. The following clothes are not appropriate for evening concerts both, if you perform or attend: tank tops, shorts, jeans, flip-flops. You might also want to bring an alarm clock with you.

Q: What can students do on free days?
A: There is  only one free day. There will be no classes or concert held on that day. The festival offers an optional guided cultural trip to Luxembourg city and the oldest German city of Trier. The trip will take entire day and the price is 70 euro per person. On that day, a dinner instead of lunch will be served  for those who are in town and signed up. Participants are free to plan some other activities, as they like: for example, explore the lovely area of Saarburg, swim in the local outdoor pool or go on day trips or perhaps visit other nearby cities and tourist attractions.

Q: Are scholarships available?
A: Yes. The scholarships are reserved for the outstanding level and needy participants only. Please consult section “Deadlines and fees” for details.

The scholarship money are distributed on first come first serve base. The early requests (but not before receiving  the Notification of acceptance and submitting the deposit) are advisable (Deadline for requests is March 10, 2023). Scholarship requests can be considered ONLY if a participant submitted a complete application and paid the Registration fee and a  deposit. We cannot provide any advanced information about the possible amount of financial aid. Thank you for respecting and adhering to this policy.

Financial aid is contingent on performing certain tasks for the Festival as well as on full cooperation with Festival needs in regard to chamber music assignments and can be revoked, partially or completely if the recipient did not comply with these requirements.

Please explore your local community, including arts, religious or civic organizations, schools and private donors for alternative sources of financial aid. Private donors are entitled to receive a  tax deduction receipt from the festival, since we are a non-profit organization.

Q: Will I be able to play chamber music during the festival?
A: Absolutely. The focal point of the festival IS chamber music. Pre-formed chamber groups are encouraged to apply and each member of preformed chamber group receives 150 euro discount. The preformed chamber group should consist of at least three members and demonstrate a record of long term collaboration, including performing history. All students will receive their chamber assignments  by June 1st  and have to arrive to the Festival ready to rehearse the next day. Students must bring their parts and scores, since there is no music library on the location. Chamber groups will be coached by the festival faculty for performances.

Q: Can I use my debit or credit cards there?
A: There are banks in town where you can exchange currency, cash your travelers checks, get cash from ATM machine. It is recommended that you bring both, debit and credit cards with you.

Q: How can I get to Saarburg?
A:  You can find travel information in the section ” Travel information” on the Festival website. However, the Festival will be providing complimentary bus Transfer service from/to the Findel airport in Luxembourg, which is the closest airport to Saarburg. Since overseas flights are not flying directly into Luxembourg, you will need first to travel into one of European capitals (London, Zürich, Brussels, Paris, Munich, Amsterdam or Frankfurt) and then fly into Luxembourg.

Q: Do I need Travel/ Travel cancellation insurance?

A: Absolutely. Every participant, faculty, guest artist or visitor is responsible for his/her own insurance. Considering that the Festival does not envision any refunds  (exceptions are: refund of deposit when the applicant is not accepted to the program or refund of deposit/tuition if the Festival is cancelled through the organizers due to force majeure), we strongly recommend to carry The Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) insurance, in case some unforeseeable circumstances, which are not covered by regular travel insurance policy, may prevent you from participation after you already paid for the program. This should allow you to claim related to the participation costs paid to the Festival. Please contact various Insurance companies for specific coverage/refund policies. Here are links to information on CFAR: