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Vienna Symphony Orchestra

Vienna Symphony Orchestra

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The Vienna Symphony Orchestra is an orchestra
Orchestra
An orchestra is a sizable instrumental ensemble that contains sections of string, brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments. The term orchestra derives from the Greek ορχήστρα, the name for the area in front of an ancient Greek stage reserved for the Greek chorus...

 in Vienna
Vienna
Vienna is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Austria and one of the nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's primary city, with a population of about 1.723 million , and is by far the largest city in Austria, as well as its cultural, economic, and political centre...

, Austria
Austria
Austria , officially the Republic of Austria , is a landlocked country of roughly 8.4 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the...

.

History


In 1900, Ferdinand Löwe
Ferdinand Löwe
Ferdinand Löwe was an Austrian conductor.- Biography :Löwe was born in Vienna, Austria where along with Munich, Germany his career was primarily centered. From 1896 Löwe conducted the Kaim Orchestra, today's Munich Philharmonic, where he returned from 1908 to 1914...

 founded the orchestra as the Wiener Concertverein (Vienna Concert Society). In 1913 it moved into the Konzerthaus, Vienna
Konzerthaus, Vienna
The Konzerthaus in Vienna was opened 1913. It is situated in the third district just at the edge of the first district in Vienna. Since it was founded it has always tried to emphasise both tradition and innovative musical styles.In 1890 the first ideas for a Haus für Musikfeste came about...

. In 1919 it merged with the Tonkünstler Orchestra
Tonkünstler Orchestra
The Tonkünstler-Orchester Niederösterreich is an Austrian orchestra based in Vienna and St. Pölten, Lower Austria.-Origin of the name:The orchestra's name has its origins in the Tonkünstler-Sozietät, Wien, which was organizing concerts in the era of Haydn and Mozart...

. In 1933 it acquired its current name. Despite a lull in concert attendance after the introduction of the radio
Radio
Radio is the transmission of signals through free space by modulation of electromagnetic waves with frequencies below those of visible light. Electromagnetic radiation travels by means of oscillating electromagnetic fields that pass through the air and the vacuum of space...

 during the 1920s, the orchestra survived until the invasion of Austria in 1938 and became incorporated into the German Culture Orchestras. As such, they were used for purposes of propaganda
Propaganda
Propaganda is a form of communication that is aimed at influencing the attitude of a community toward some cause or position so as to benefit oneself or one's group....

 until, depleted by assignments to work in munitions factories, the orchestra closed down on September 1, 1944.

Their first post-war concert occurred on September 16, 1945, performing Gustav Mahler
Gustav Mahler
Gustav Mahler was a late-Romantic Austrian composer and one of the leading conductors of his generation. He was born in the village of Kalischt, Bohemia, in what was then Austria-Hungary, now Kaliště in the Czech Republic...

's Symphony No. 3
Symphony No. 3 (Mahler)
The Symphony No. 3 by Gustav Mahler was written between 1893 and 1896. It is his longest piece and is the longest symphony in the standard repertoire, with a typical performance lasting around ninety to one hundred minutes.- Structure :...

. Under the direction of Josef Krips
Josef Krips
Josef Alois Krips was an Austrian conductor and violinist.-Biography:Krips was born in Vienna and went on to become a pupil of Eusebius Mandyczewski and Felix Weingartner. From 1921 to 1924, he served as Weingartner's assistant at the Vienna Volksoper and as répétiteur and chorus master...

, they quickly rebuilt a modern repertoire after ten years of isolation and travelled to the Bregenz Festival for the first time in the summer of 1946.

1946 marked the beginning of the tenure of maestro
Maestro
Maestro is a title of extreme respect given to a master musician. The term is most commonly used in the context of Western classical music and opera. This is associated with the ubiquitous use of Italian vocabulary for classical music terms...

 Herbert von Karajan
Herbert von Karajan
Herbert von Karajan was an Austrian orchestra and opera conductor. To the wider world he was perhaps most famously associated with the Berlin Philharmonic, of which he was principal conductor for 35 years...

 who, though not principal conductor, worked with the VSO in the "Karajan Series" concerts, going on extensive tours throughout Europe and North America. In 1959 the VSO performed for Pope John XXIII
Pope John XXIII
-Papal election:Following the death of Pope Pius XII in 1958, Roncalli was elected Pope, to his great surprise. He had even arrived in the Vatican with a return train ticket to Venice. Many had considered Giovanni Battista Montini, Archbishop of Milan, a possible candidate, but, although archbishop...

 at Vatican City
Vatican City
Vatican City , or Vatican City State, in Italian officially Stato della Città del Vaticano , which translates literally as State of the City of the Vatican, is a landlocked sovereign city-state whose territory consists of a walled enclave within the city of Rome, Italy. It has an area of...

, leading up to the debut of Wolfgang Sawallisch
Wolfgang Sawallisch
Wolfgang Sawallisch is a retired German conductor and pianist.-Biography:Sawallisch was born in Munich, and studied composition and pianoforte there privately: at the conclusion of the war, in 1946 he continued his studies at the Munich High School for Music and passed his final examination for...

.

Sawallisch's leadership saw a tour of the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 in 1964 as well as a combined U.S.-Japan
Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

 tour in 1967. It also included the re-opening of the Theater an der Wien
Theater an der Wien
The Theater an der Wien is a historic theatre on the Left Wienzeile in the Mariahilf district of Vienna. Completed in 1801, it has seen the premieres of many celebrated works of theatre, opera, and symphonic music...

 in 1962. Krips returned as artistic advisor in the interim between Sawallisch's departure and the arrival of Carlo Maria Giulini
Carlo Maria Giulini
Carlo Maria Giulini was an Italian conductor.-Biography:Giulini was born in Barletta, Italy, to a father born in Lombardy and a mother born in Naples; but he was raised in Bolzano, which at the time of his birth was part of Austria...

 as principal conductor. In the 1986, Georges Prêtre
Georges Prêtre
- Biography :He was born in Waziers , and attended the Douai Conservatory and then studied harmony under Maurice Duruflé and conducting under André Cluytens among others at the Conservatoire de Paris. Amongst his early musical interests were jazz and trumpet. After graduating, he conducted in a...

 became principal guest conductor, and served until the arrival of Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos
Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos
Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos is a Spanish conductor and composer.Frühbeck studied violin, piano, and composition at the conservatories of Bilbao and Madrid...

 as principal conductor in 1991. Vladimir Fedosejev became chief conductor in 1997 and served in the post until 2005. Currently, Prêtre and Sawallisch each hold the title of Ehrendirigent (honorary conductor) with the VSO.

Since 2005, Fabio Luisi
Fabio Luisi
Fabio Luisi is an Italian conductor. On September 6, 2011, he was named Principal Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera....

 has held the post of chief conductor. He is contracted to the VSO through 2013, and is scheduled to step down from the VSO chief conductorship after the 2012-2013 season. In October 2011, Philippe Jordan
Philippe Jordan
Philippe Jordan is a Swiss conductor, and the son of conductor Armin Jordan. He began to study piano at age 6. At age 8, he joined the Zürich Sängerknaben. His violin studies began at age 11....

 was named the VSO's next chief conductor, effective with the 2014-2015 season, with an initial contract of 5 years

Chief conductors


  • 1900-1925 Ferdinand Löwe
    Ferdinand Löwe
    Ferdinand Löwe was an Austrian conductor.- Biography :Löwe was born in Vienna, Austria where along with Munich, Germany his career was primarily centered. From 1896 Löwe conducted the Kaim Orchestra, today's Munich Philharmonic, where he returned from 1908 to 1914...

  • 1920s-1930s Wilhelm Furtwängler
    Wilhelm Furtwängler
    Wilhelm Furtwängler was a German conductor and composer. He is widely considered to have been one of the greatest symphonic and operatic conductors of the 20th century. By the 1930s he had built a reputation as one of the leading conductors in Europe, and he was the leading conductor who remained...

     (as director of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde
    Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde
    The Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien , was founded in 1812 by Joseph von Sonnleithner, general secretary of the Court Theatre, Vienna, Austria. Its official charter, drafted in 1814, states that the purpose of the Society was to promote music in all its facets...

    )
  • 1933-1940s Oswald Kabasta
    Oswald Kabasta
    Oswald Kabasta was an Austrian conductor.Kabasta was born in Mistelbach, Austria and later studied with composer Franz Schmidt. In 1931 he became head of conducting at the Vienna Academy. He also served as musical director of Vienna Radio about this time. In 1938 he became principal conductor...

  • 1946-1948 Hans Swarowsky
    Hans Swarowsky
    Hans Swarowsky was an Austrian conductor of Hungarian birth and Jewish descent.Swarowsky was born in Budapest, Hungary. He studied the art of conducting under Felix Weingartner and Richard Strauss...

  • 1948-1960 Herbert von Karajan
    Herbert von Karajan
    Herbert von Karajan was an Austrian orchestra and opera conductor. To the wider world he was perhaps most famously associated with the Berlin Philharmonic, of which he was principal conductor for 35 years...

     (as director of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde
    Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde
    The Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien , was founded in 1812 by Joseph von Sonnleithner, general secretary of the Court Theatre, Vienna, Austria. Its official charter, drafted in 1814, states that the purpose of the Society was to promote music in all its facets...

    )
  • 1960-1970 Wolfgang Sawallisch
    Wolfgang Sawallisch
    Wolfgang Sawallisch is a retired German conductor and pianist.-Biography:Sawallisch was born in Munich, and studied composition and pianoforte there privately: at the conclusion of the war, in 1946 he continued his studies at the Munich High School for Music and passed his final examination for...

  • 1970-1973 Josef Krips
    Josef Krips
    Josef Alois Krips was an Austrian conductor and violinist.-Biography:Krips was born in Vienna and went on to become a pupil of Eusebius Mandyczewski and Felix Weingartner. From 1921 to 1924, he served as Weingartner's assistant at the Vienna Volksoper and as répétiteur and chorus master...

     (artistic advisor)
  • 1973-1976 Carlo Maria Giulini
    Carlo Maria Giulini
    Carlo Maria Giulini was an Italian conductor.-Biography:Giulini was born in Barletta, Italy, to a father born in Lombardy and a mother born in Naples; but he was raised in Bolzano, which at the time of his birth was part of Austria...

  • 1980-1982 Gennady Rozhdestvensky
    Gennady Rozhdestvensky
    Gennady Nikolayevich Rozhdestvensky is a Russian conductor.-Biography:Rozhdestvensky was born in Moscow. His parents were the noted conductor and pedagogue Nikolai Anosov and soprano Natalya Rozhdestvenskaya...

  • 1986-1991 Georges Prêtre
    Georges Prêtre
    - Biography :He was born in Waziers , and attended the Douai Conservatory and then studied harmony under Maurice Duruflé and conducting under André Cluytens among others at the Conservatoire de Paris. Amongst his early musical interests were jazz and trumpet. After graduating, he conducted in a...

     (principal guest conductor)
  • 1991-1996 Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos
    Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos
    Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos is a Spanish conductor and composer.Frühbeck studied violin, piano, and composition at the conservatories of Bilbao and Madrid...

  • 1997-2005 Vladimir Fedoseyev
    Vladimir Fedoseyev
    Vladimir Ivanovich Fedoseyev is a Russian conductor.Fedoseyev graduated from the Gnessin State Musical College 1957, and Moscow Conservatory 1972. From 1974 artistic director and chief conductor of the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra of Moscow Radio 1974-1999. He has also served as principal...

  • 2005-present Fabio Luisi
    Fabio Luisi
    Fabio Luisi is an Italian conductor. On September 6, 2011, he was named Principal Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera....


External links