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Prof. Reinhard Öhlberger
In Switzerland the presentation and wearing of honor medals is tied to very specific restrictions. Thus for Austrians, where the tradition exists of awarding titles and special honors with regularity, the Swiss prohibitions in this regard seem quite strange.
However there is a procedure for bestowing special honor given for exceptional service in behalf of Switzerland designated as a "token of esteem". Such was the case for our former Business Manager, Prof. Dr. Dieter Flury, who was born in Zurich. On Monday, November 17, 2014, in the Marble Hall of the Upper Belvedere Palace, Swiss Ambassador Christoph Bubb presented this particular award to Dieter Flury, based on the initiative of the Swiss Culture Attaché in Vienna, Jaques Ducrest.
Naturally such an event had musical underpinnings. Albena Danailova, Isabelle Ballot (violin), Tamás Varga (cello) and Elias Mai (contrabass, Vienna State Opera) performed first the "Sonate in re minore" by Johann Joseph Fux. Afterwards Christian Flury, the son of Dieter Flury, was heard in a duet for alto flute and contrabass (Carolin Ralser and Nikolaus Feinig). In conclusion, the composition "Akese", for speaker, flute and tape recording by Klaus Huber, after a poem by Günter Grass, was performed by Dieter Flury and his daughter, Iréna Flury.
The particular time and location for the aforementioned event received an additional Swiss emphasis through an exhibition currently being presented for two weeks in the Marble Hall of the Upper Belvedere Palace entitled "Special Cases-Cosmic Rocket" by Nives Widauer, a photograph and object artist, who was born in Basel.