Le Grand Bal, New Year’s Eve, Vienna, Austria

A highlight of the social calendar in Vienna every year, Le Grand Bal, the New Year’s Eve Ball, held at the Hofburg Palace, is well worth experiencing. Baroque Access finds out all the details


This year’s Grand Bal in Vienna, to be held on 31 December 2016, is themed ‘Rhythm of Vienna’, offering an impressive entertainment program full of fun, dancing, stunning music with big-name bands and orchestras not to mention an unforgettable fireworks display. From the spellbinding opening ceremony onwards, guests will enjoy Vienna’s traditional social end-of-year highlight, which welcomes in the new year. The culmination of the evening is the ringing of the Pummerin bell at St Stephen’s Cathedral.


Highlights of Le Grand Bal include the event’s traditional Blue Danube Waltz as well as the legendary public quadrille in the imperial staterooms of the world-renowned Hofburg Palace. And let’s not forget the food. Guests will enjoy gourmet delights during the four-course gala dinner. New Year’s Eve at Le Grand Bal is an occasion to remember for the rest of your life, brimming with laughter, champagne, dancing and music.


This New Year’s Eve Ball at Vienna’s former Imperial Winter residence is the start of the ball season in Austria and the rest of Europe, too. Le Grand Bal always features world-famous artists from both the Vienna State Opera and Volksoper Wien, as well as numerous well-known orchestras and bands. Music played ranges from the waltz to jazz.


The program for Le Grand Bal never varies much. Doors open for the gala dinner at 6.30pm, and those guests who are only attending the ball get there at 9.15pm. The ball’s captivating program does change annually, and features pieces from various periods of time in the city’s history.


This year’s theme, ‘Rhythm of Vienna’ will be steeped in color and music. No doubt the gowns and suits worn will be as elegant and chic as always, and the magical night will be full of exciting experiences, culminating in the countdown to 2017 in the Festsaal at midnight – or, if you prefer, you can go outside to watch the fireworks display above the historic center of Vienna.


Full program of events

6.30pm: Gala dinner guests arrive

7pm: Opening of the Grand Staircase

8pm: Gala dinner

9.15pm: Guests arrive for opening of Le Grand Bal

10pm: Opening of the Grand Staircase, featuring soloists from the Vienna State Opera Ballet Association

10.30pm: Opening ceremony in the Festsaal featuring Elmayer dance school debutantes committee

11.58pm: Midnight countdown

Midnight: Ringing of the Pummerin bell, Blue Danube Waltz

00.05am: Midnight show in the Festsaal and Zeremoniensaal, presented by soloists from top opera houses and the Vienna State Ballet.

00.30am and 2.30am: Public quadrille in the Festsaal with the Elmayer dance school.

4am: Conclusion.


If you would like to attend the legendary Le Grand Bal, Baroque Access can assist. Just contact us right away, info@baroqueaccess.com and we will help you purchase your tickets, or give you any information you require. If you wish to travel to Vienna for the New Year, or just after, and need travel assistance, our sister company, Baroque Travel, can arrange everything for you. Contact them right away, info@baroquetravel.com.