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Prof. Reinhard Öhlberger
On September 1, 2014, two distinguished orchestra members whose careers reflected a broad range of activities entered into retirement.
Friedrich Dolezal was born in Vienna on August 1, 1947, and received his first cello lessons at the age of seven at the Music School of the City of Vienna from Professor Frieda Litschauer-Krause. He followed his teacher to the Academy of Music and Performing Arts (today known as the University of Music and Performing Arts), and continued his study there receiving a diploma with distinction in 1968 and augmenting his studies through work with Enrico Mainardi and Vladimir Orloff.
Friedrich Dolezal secured his high school diploma from the Vienna Schottengymnasium in 1965, and while still studying he was employed by the Theater an der Wien as principal cellist until his successful audition and engagement with the Vienna State Opera Orchestra which took place only shortly before receiving his diploma from the Academy in 1968. In 1973, he became a member of the Association of the Vienna Philharmonic and in 1974 advanced to the position of section leader of the cello section. In the years 1976 and 1977 he was responsible for the Philharmonic Ball as well as being a member of the Philharmonic administrative committee between 2007 and 2014. Since 1995, he has been a member of the Vienna Hofmuskkapelle.
Well beyond his orchestral duties, Friedrich Dolezal is active with chamber music, solo appearances and teaching. He was a member of both the "Nicolai Quartet" (founded by our former concertmaster, Erich Binder), as well as a member of the "Wiener Kammervirtuosen", from whose ranks the "Vienna Octet" was later formed, in which he is currently active. Following a short period with the "Vienna Schubert Trio" with Boris Kuschnir and Claus Christian Schuster, he joined the "Vienna String Quartet", headed by concertmaster Werner Hink, in 1985. As a member of this group he performed regularly in chamber music concerts of the Society of Friends of Music. With the "Vienna String Quartet ", as he had also done with the " Vienna Octet ", he participated in tours in Europe, America and East Asia, making numerous records and CDs. With these ensembles, as well as with his membership in the "Ensemble Kontrapunkte" and the "Ensemble of the 20th Century," he took part in the premieres and performances of new music, with a particular emphasis on Austrian composers, such as Karl Pilss, Marcel Rubin, Armin Kaufmann, Gottfried v. Einem, Gerhard Wimberger, Helmut Eder, Otto M. Zykan, Theodor Berger, Ivan Eröd, Thomas D. Schlee, as well as composers from the ranks of the Vienna Philharmonic, such as Fritz Leitermeyer, Paul Walter Fürst and Alfred Prinz.
Fritz Dolezal was awarded the title of Professor and received the Gold Medal of Service to the Province of Salzburg, as well as the Honorary Silver Medal of the Republic of Austria. Fritz Dolezal has performed as soloist with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Bruckner Orchestra Linz, the New World Symphony Orchestra under Michael Tilson Thomas, the Beethoven Orchestra Bonn, the Radio Symphony Orchestra Prague and the Sapporo Symphony Orchestra. He teaches instrumental music, orchestral pedagogy, and chamber music at various musical institutitions, such as the "Jungen Philharmonie", the "Internationalen Orchesterinstitute Attergau", the "Orchestral Academy of the New World Symphony" (Miami, U.S.A.) and the "Pacific Music Festival" (Sapporo, Japan).
≡ Günter Seifert
Günter Seifert, the older of two brothers in our orchestra, was born in Weyer an der Enns in Upper Austria on May 24, 1948. He received his first violin lessons at the age of eight from Rudolf Merwald, who had been a student of Otakar Ševčík, thus making it legitimate to say that Günter Seifert was a "grand-student" of this incredible violin pedagogue. At the age of 14, following his acceptance into the Mozarteum in Salzburg, he continued his violin study with Christa Richter Steiner (concertmaster of the Camerata Salzburg) and additional lessons followed under Jaroslav Suchy. He acquired his first orchestra experience in 1967 in the Camerata Salzburg under the baton of Bernhard Paumgartner. In 1969 he changed to the College of Music in Vienna under Prof. Franz Samohyl. At his first audition in 1972, he was accepted into the orchestra of the Vienna State Opera, being engaged as second violin. In that same year, the Seifert Quartet was founded. In 1975, following another successful audition, he moved to first violin and was accepted into the association of the Vienna Philharmonic.
Between 1988 and 1992, Günter Seifert was a member of the "Ensemble Wien". In the years that followed, there was muach collaboratory work with such artists as Placido Domingo and Andre Previn, such as recordings of the Piano Quartets in G minor and E-flat major of W.A. Mozart. There followed awards such as the 'Tonträger' Prize in 1993 and in 1996 the Mozart Interpretation Prize from the Mozartgemeinde Vienna. In 1991 he received the "Gold Medal of Service to the Province of Salzburg" and in the year 2000 he received the preofessional title of " Professor" from Austrian President Dr. Thomas Klestil. The Silver Nedal of Service to the Republic of Austria was presented to him by Austrian President Dr. Heinz Fischer in 2007.
In 1995, Günter Seifert founded the "Vienna Violin Quartet (a group comprised of three violins and contrabass) in order to feature the works of J. Lanner and Strauss, Sr. This was the realization of a particular wish of Günter Seifert to promote the elevated "classical" dance music of the 19th century. Through his own compostions, among them the Polka "Zuckergoscherl", he continued his predilection for this particular branch of music also as a conductor. Since 1999, Günter Seifert has been concertmaster with the Ensemble Corso Vienna. In 2007, he served as director of his own ensemble "Die Wiener". In 2010, he made his first appearance as conductor with the Austrian Youth Orchestra at its annual event in Styria called "Kultur-Land-Leben". Also in 2010, Günter Seifert was the co-initiator of the Chamber Music Cycle of the Vienna Philharmonic in the Vienna State Opera, and served as its artistic director until 2014. Günter Seifert performs on a violin from the Italian master, Sanctus Seraphin.