If, as some sources report, it was really Hector Berlioz who first used the term “festival” in 1830, we in Baden-Baden have a special duty to bring the festival back to the center of our work. The French composer took the festival idea to the cultural haven of Baden-Baden, which for some time was simply known among French summer guests as the “7th Arrondissement ”– the artists' quarter, the “place to be” in old Paris. We are confident that the future belongs to the festival. Encounters over a period of several days together with explorations and reflections in the echo chamber of the festival venue lead to lasting nourishment for the soul. We would like to present you newly focussed festivals and celebrate them together with you. They will offer an atmosphere full of promise, artistic commitment, and the spiritual gateway to a new era.