Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The tainted philharmonic

Justin Davidson of New York magazine outlines new disclosures from long-suppressed archives of the Vienna Philharmonic on its collaboration with the Nazis before and during World War II:

Headline findings: During the period of Nazi rule in Austria (1938-45), nearly half the members of the orchestra were party members, including an SS officer who spied on colleagues and after the war became the chief administrator of the orchestra. . . . The popular New Year Strauss concerts were introduced under Nazi auspices; Joseph Goebbels, the party propaganda chief, ordered suppression of the fact that the Strausses had Jewish ancestors.

The report by a group of historians, in German only (English version to follow), is here: