At a recent meeting, the Board of Directors of the Bruckner Society of America chose Franz Welser-Möst, Music Director of The Cleveland Orchestra and the General Music Director of the Vienna State Opera, to receive the Julio Kilenyi Medal of Honor.
The Kilenyi Medal of Honor was created by Julio Kilenyi (1885-1959) especially for the Bruckner Society of America. The first medals were given out in 1933 to Arturo Toscanini, Serge Koussevitsky, and Bruno Walter. Ever since those first awards were presented, the Society has continued to present them to conductors, scholars, and musicologists who have helped to further the understanding and appreciation of Anton Bruckner’s life and work.
It is for Franz Welser-Möst’s understanding, advocacy, and dedication to Bruckner’s music that the Board of Directors has chosen to present this special recognition to Franz Welser-Möst during his upcoming series of performances with The Cleveland Orchestra at the Lincoln Center Festival. The award will be presented on July 13th at Avery Fisher Hall immediately following a rehearsal on stage.
Franz Welser-Möst was singled out for recognition due to his long-standing advocacy for the music of Bruckner. In 1996, Franz Welser-Möst began conducting Bruckner symphonies with The Cleveland Orchestra and has released video recordings of Bruckner Symphonies Nos. 5, 7, 8, and 9 with the Orchestra in three historic venues: the Abbey of St. Florian in Linz , the Musikverein in Vienna , and at Severance Hall in Cleveland . During the 2010-11 season, Mr. Welser-Möst led the Vienna Philharmonic in Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9 at Suntory Hall in Japan . From August of 2010 through July of 2011, Mr. Welser-Möst and The Cleveland Orchestra will have performed a total of 17 Bruckner symphony performances in Ohio , Scotland , Switzerland , and Japan , as well as in New York City at the Lincoln Center Festival. The Cleveland Orchestra debuts at the festival in a series of performances of Bruckner Symphonies Nos. 5, 7, 8, and 9, which will be presented in a single week of concerts from July 13-17, 2011.