Vienna’s Traditional New Year Concert Drops “Nazi Past”

The Vienna Philharmonic is doing away with an arrangement of Johann Strauss I’s Radetsky March, set by the NS-era composer Leopold Weninger, for its forthcoming New Year’s Concert.

The orchestra’s leadership confirmed the decision to the Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung, a local German newspaper, stating that henceforth the Philharmonic wanted a version of the march “unconnected to the Nazi past.”

Despite its origins, the concerts continued after the war was lost. In 1987, the Philharmonic was led by Herbert von Karajan, who joined the NSDAP in 1935 and whose conducting career thrived in NS-era Germany.

The New Year’s Concert is now broadcast in over 90 countries. The Philharmonic only formally acknowledged the event’s National Socialist connections in 2013.

Read more here from The Daily Archives

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