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Home > Orchestra : History > Orchestra

The Modern Era

Prof. Dr. Clemens Hellsberg

After World War II the orchestra continued the policy it began in 1933 of working with every conductor of repute. Especially important in the history of the orchestra after 1945 were the artistic collaborations with its two honorary conductors Karl Böhm and Herbert von Karajan, and with its honorary member Leonard Bernstein.

Through its busy concert schedule, recordings on film and record, tours all over the world, and regular appearances at major international festivals, the Vienna Philharmonic meets all the requirements of the modern multimedia music business while still managing to emphasize its unique individuality, perhaps best exemplified in the annual New Year's Concert, and in the pivotal role it plays each summer at the Salzburg Festival. Although the orchestra has moved with the times, it remains faithful to traditional principles by retaining its autonomy and the subscription concert series as the artistic, organizational and financial basis of its work.

The Vienna Philharmonic is not only Austria's most highly coveted "cultural export", it is also an ambassador of peace, humanity and reconciliation, concepts which are inseparably linked to the message of music itself. In 2012 the Vienna Philharmonic was named Goodwill Ambassador of the IIASA (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis). For its artistic achievements the orchestra has received numerous awards, gold and platinum disks, national honors, and honorary membership in many cultural institutions.

The Modern Era

The Vienna Philharmonic is not only Austria's most highly coveted "cultural export", it is also an ambassador of peace, humanity and reconciliation, concepts which are inseparably linked to the message of music itself.

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