"Music, especially opera, interacts with the senses in the purest way," says Heinz Patzak, "which is why watching a great performance often turns into such an extremely emotional experience." Patzak's company, Panopera, makes this experience available to their clients by organizing high-end opera tours all over the world. The Vienna-based company not only guarantees the best seats for events like the Verdi Gala with Placido Domingo in Parma or Robert Carson's provocative Les Contes d'Hoffmann in Paris, but they also carefully coordinate fine hotels and restaurants and musical reference points. During a weekend in Salzburg, Patzak compiled a roundup of important composers' landmarks, such as Beethoven's house and the room in which Mozart composed Le Nozze di Figaro. Instead of simply touring the premises, though, musicians performed the composers' works sur place, culminating in a string quartet which played excerpts from The Four Seasons at Vivaldi's grave.
Patzak's true passion is organizing custom-made corporate tours: whether it's dinner onstage at the Prague Opera House or a cruise on the Po River with a performance under the stars in Verona. Whereas in the past these tours had a primarily European audience, this year they are offered to an American clientele. For custom events, ask for Mr. Patzak. Schottenring 23, A-1010 Vienna, Austria; 43-1-310-2541.