The Festival is financed by the Government and City Council, box office income and private sponsoring, and presided over by the Minister of Culture and the Mayor of Reykjavik on a rotating basis.
Mr. Vladimir Ashkenazy, one of the founders of the Festival, has been the honorary president from the beginning. Patron is the President of Iceland, Olafur Ragnar Grimsson.
The purpose of the Festival is to promote Icelandic and international culture in all fields of art. Festival programmes offer a variety of selected concerts, theatre, exhibitions, dance and opera performances. Along with its focus on Icelandic culture past and present, the Festival has hosted many outstanding international artists and performers.