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Famous Austrians

Who doesn't know them, Austria's 'great' sons and daughters? They have left their mark all across the centuries in politics, art, science and sport. Find out which famous personalities originated from the country at the heart of Europe, or chose it as the center of their life and creative work.
  • Bachmann, Ingeborg (1926 - 1973): The novelist, poet and playwright Ingeborg Bachmann has been recognized as one of post-1945's most important German writers. Find out more

  • Berg, Alban (1885 - 1935): Austrian composer Alban Berg was a member of the Second Viennese School with Arnold Schönberg and Anton Webern. He produced compositions that combined Mahlerian Romanticism with a personal adaptation of Schönberg's twelve-tone technique. Find out more

  • Berg, Werner (1904 - 1981): German-born painter Werner Berg was bewitched by the austere beauty of Austria's southern Carinthia, the picturesque villages and quaint farmhouses, the barren high Alpine meadows, the luscious orchards down in the valley, and the hospitality and friendliness of the people. Find out more

  • Bruckner, Anton (1824 - 1896): Anton Bruckner was an Austrian composer known for his symphonies, masses and motets. Find out more

  • von Einem, Gottfried (1918 - 1996): Gottfried von Einem is one of the few Austrian composers of the 20th century to gain worldwide renown. Although he cannot be classified as belonging to any particular school or movement ,his operas are influenced by the music of Stravinsky, Prokofiev and jazz. Find out more

  • Freud, Sigmund (1856 - 1939): Freud is bound to be mentioned sooner or later whenever psychology is discussed. Even when his name is not cited, his ideas and terminology are frequently referred to, often without realizing their origins are owed to his work. Terms such as "Oedipus Complex" and "repression", for example, are classified as general knowledge nowadays. Find out more

  • Handke, Peter (born 1942): The avant-garde Austrian playwright, novelist, poet and essayist Peter Handke is regarded as one of the most influential German-language writers of our time. Find out more

  • Haydn, Joseph (1732 - 1809): The father of the Viennese Classic, Franz Joseph Haydn, was not born in Vienna, but in the village of Rohrau in the eastern part of Lower Austria on 31st March 1732. Find out more

  • Hundertwasser, Friedensreich (1928 - 2000): Friedensreich Hundertwasser was one of Austria’s most famous avant-garde artists. His artworks reflect his philosophy, which is based on a harmonious interaction between nature and man. Find out more

  • Kálmán, Emmerich (1882 - 1953): Although Hungarian by birth (Siófok, October 24, 1882), Emmerich Kálmán is one of the great representatives of the Viennese operetta. Find out more

  • Kauffmann, Angelika (1741 - 1807): During the transitional period between the Baroque and the Neo-classical Ages, the Austrian province of Vorarlberg produced a painter - Angelika Kauffmann - who was to achieve both fame and popularity far beyond the borders of her homeland. Find out more

  • Klimt, Gustav (1862 - 1918): The painter Gustav Klimt was born on 14th July 1862 in Baumgarten, a part of today's 14th district in Vienna. He is considered the main figure of Austria’s Art Nouveau. Find out more

  • Kogelnik, Kiki (1935 - 1997): Kiki Kogelnik was an Austrian painter, sculptor and printmaker. She studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, moved to New York in 1961, and is considered to be Austria's most important Pop-related artist. Find out more

  • Kolig, Anton (1886 - 1950): Anton Kolig was born in Nötsch im Gailtal, belonging to the province of Carinthia. He was an Austrian expressionist painter whose works were full of power and tenderness. Find out more

  • Lavant, Christine (1915 - 1973): Christine Lavant who was born in Carinthia was an Austrian poet and novelist. Lavant made her breakthrough with her collection of poems "The Beggar's Bowl" in 1956. Find out more

  • Lehár, Franz (1870 - 1948): Franz Lehár was an Austro-Hungarian composer. He is known for his operettas of which the most successful and best known is "The Merry Widow" (Die lustige Witwe). Find out more

  • Mahler, Gustav (1860 - 1911): Gustav Mahler was born into a poor Jewish family in the town of Kalište in Bohemia on 7th July 1860. Mahler's considerable musical talents, which he employed both as composer and conductor, were surpassed only by his ambition. Find out more

  • Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus (1756 - 1791) Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - one of the greatest composers of all times. He created his own distinct style, blending traditional and contemporary. Find out more

  • Musil, Robert (1880 - 1942): Robert Musil was an Austrian writer. His unfinished long novel "The Man Without Qualities" is one of the most important modernist novels. Find out more

  • Schönberg, Arnold (1874 - 1951): Arnold Schoenberg was an Austrian composer and painter, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School. Find out more

  • Stolz, Robert (1880 - 1975): Robert Stolz was an Austrian conductor and songwriter as well as a composer of operettas and film music. Find out more

  • Strauß, Johann (1825 - 1899): Johann Strauss II was an Austrian composer of light music, particularly dance music and operettas. He composed over 500 waltzes, polkas, quadrilles and other types of dance music, as well as several operettas and a ballet. In his lifetime, he was known as "The Waltz King. Find out more

  • Strauß, Johann - Father (1804 - 1849): Johann Strauss I was born in Vienna. He was an Austrian Romantic composer and was famed for his waltzes. His most famous piece is the Radetzky March (named after Joseph Radetzky von Radetz), while his most famous waltz is probably the Lorelei Rheinklänge, Op. 154. Find out more

  • Suppé, Franz von (1819 - 1895): Franz von Suppé or Francesco Suppé Demelli was an Austrian composer and conductor of the Romantic period, notable for his four dozen operettas. Find out more

  • Turrini, Peter (born 1944): Peter Turrini is an Austrian leftist playwright and was born in Carinthia. He has been writing since 1971, when his play Rozznjogd premiered at the Volkstheater in Vienna. Turrini has written plays, screenplays, poems and essays. Find out more

  • Wagner, Otto (1841-1918): Otto Koloman Wagner was an Austrian architect and urban planner. He is known for his lasting impact on the appearance of his home town Vienna, to which he contributed many landmarks. Find out more

  • Webern, Anton von (1883 - 1945): Anton Webern was an Austrian composer and conductor. As a student and follower of Arnold Schönberg, he became one of the best-known exponents of the twelve-tone technique. In addition, his innovations regarding schematic organization of pitch, rhythm and dynamics were formative in the musical technique later known as total serialism. Find out more

  • Wolf, Hugo (1860 - 1903): Hugo Wolf was an Austrian composer of Slovene origin, particularly noted for his art songs. He brought to this form a concentrated expressive intensity unique in late Romantic music, somewhat related to that of the Second Viennese School in concision, but utterly unrelated in technique. Find out more

  • Schubert, Franz (1797 - 1828): Franz Schubert was a Viennese composer, who composed his first pieces in his childhood. Find out more

  • 200 Years of Franz Liszt: More than 200 years ago, Franz Liszt created an entirely new genre of piano music and a groundbreaking compositional style. Guided by his vision of transporting his ideas out into the world, Liszt soon became a cosmopolitan due to his extensive concert tours throughout all of Europe, dazzling audiences with his unique performance style and virtuosity. Find out more






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