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Home > Orchestra : Orchestra

 

Das Philharmonische Tagebuch

Thu, 29. December 2011

Interna

 

Günther Szkokan verstorben

Prof. Günther Szkokan

Günther Szkokan, who was born in Vienna on April 11, 1939, received his first violin lessons from his father, Franz Szkokan, a long-time member of the Vienna State Opera Chorus and Chairman of the Concert Formation of the State Opera Chorus. He later had violin lessons with Eva Hitzker, before commencing his study of the viola with Ernst Morawec, Philharmonic principal violist who was also the leading viola pedagogue at the Music Academy. In 1959, Günther Szkokan became section leader of the viola section of the orchestra at the Vienna Volksoper. Six years later, he auditioned successfully and joined the Vienna State Opera Orchestra on September 1, 1965. The membership quota of 120 persons, still in effect at this time for the Association of the Vienna Philharmonic, limited his access to membership until September 1, 1972. (Three months later and long overdue, the number of Philharmonic musicians was raised to 140 to reflect the expansion of the opera orchestra which had taken place during the administration of Herbert von Karajan, and the waiting period for membership in the private association of the Vienna Philharmonic was limited to three years.)

Until his retirement on September 1, 2001, Günther Szkokan concentrated his efforts on orchestral performance, but for a time he was a coach for the National Youth Orchestra and was also a member of Willi Boskovsky's "Mozart Ensemble". For his artistic achievements he was awarded the Gold Medal of Service to the Province of Salzburg in 1989, as well as the professional title of "Professor" in 1992. In 1995 he was presented with the Honorary Ring of the Vienna Philharmonic. At his funeral at Vienna's Main Cemetery on January 4, 2012, concertmaster Werner Hink, Michal Kostka, Peter Pecha, and Friedrich Dolezal paid the last respects on behalf of the Vienna Philharmonic with the Andante Cantabile from Wolfgang Mozart's String Quartet in C major, KV 465. Professor Günther Szkokan faithfully performed his professional duties, in a quiet and humble manner, contributing a valuable service to the coherence of our association.

 

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