Hannes Richter

Austrian Ambassador Hosts 26th Annual Concert and Gala of Choral Arts Society of Washington

Hannes Richter

amb_gala_sm.jpgThe Choral Arts Society of Washington is one of the most versatile and respected choral ensembles in the United States. Founded in 1965 by its current artistic director, Norman Scriber, its group of 200 voices has been performing over 41 years. In 1971, at the request of Leonard Bernstein, Mr. Scribner assembled a professional choir to perform in the world premiere of Mass for the opening of The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Since that time, it performs there on a regular annual basis and tours internationally, appearing with the world’s leading orchestras. Its mission is to share the art of choral music through performance and to foster its promotion through education and outreach to the community and to students, such as to the D.C. public schools serving 1,000 elementary school children.

The annual Gala is the Choral Arts Society’s principal fundraising and social event, which is hosted each year by a different Embassy in Washington, D.C. On December 18, 2006, Austrian Ambassador Eva Nowotny and Professor Thomas Nowotny served as its Honorary Patrons for the Twenty-Sixth Annual Holiday Concert and Gala entitled, Tales from the Vienna Woods. The evening began with a Christmas Music concert in the Kennedy Center’s Concert Hall and featured soprano Jennifer Larmore and the American Youth Philharmonic, who performed the Tales from the Vienna Woods by Johann Strauss. The celebration continued on the Roof Terrace, having the theme of Gustav Klimt and a Viennese Waltz Ball, with dinner and Austrian auction items, such as a one-week stay at Schloss Leopoldskron in Austria, the site of the classic film, The Sound of Music, and also a number of luxury items.