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Fritz Stiedry (born 11 October 1883 in Vienna, died 8 August 1968 in Zurich) was an Austrian conductor and composer.



While studying law at the University of Vienna, Stiedry's musical abilities were noticed by Gustav Mahler who appointed him his assistant at the Vienna Court Opera in 1907. This was followed by other assistant posts, leading to chief conductorships at the operas of Kassel and Berlin.

In 1933 Stiedry left Germany in response to the assumption of power by Adolf Hitler. From 1934 until 1937 Stiedry was principal conductor of the Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra. Stiedry was involved in rehearsals for the premiere of Shostakovich's Fourth Symphony; however the premiere was canceled for reasons that remain controversial. Some claim that Shostakovich felt Stiedry unable to deal with the symphony's complexities: however others say that the real reason was that Communist Party officials pressured the composer to withdraw the work.[1].

In 1937 Stiedry left Leningrad for the United States. He worked with the New Friends of Music Orchestra in New York, where he performed long-neglected works by Bach, Haydn and Mozart and premiered Schoenberg's Second Chamber Symphony. From 1945 onwards, Stiedry returned to opera, conducting the Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Metropolitan Opera of New York. He was co-founder of the Hunter College Opera Workshop.


  • Der gerettete Alkibiades, opera
  • chambermusic


  • Holmes, John L. Conductors on record, Victor Gollancz, 1982.
  • Handbuch österreichischer Autorinnen und Autoren jüdischer Herkunft 18. bis 20. Jahrhundert. Vol. 3, S-Z. Ed. Österreichische Nationalbibliothek Wien. K. G. Saur, 2002, ISBN 3-598-11545-8, p. 1328.
  • Sadie, Stanley. The new Grove dictionary of music and musicians, Macmillan, 1980.
  • Lyman, Darryl. Great Jews in Music, J. D. Publishers, 1986.
  • Sadie, Stanley; Hitchcock, H. Wiley (Ed.). The New Grove Dictionary of American Music. Grove's Dictionaries of Music, 1986.
  • Myers, Kurtz. Index to record reviews 1984–1987, G.K. Hall, 1989.
  • Pâris, Alain. Dictionnaire des interpretes et de l'interpretation musicale au XX siecle, Robert Laffont, 1989.

External links

Preceded by
Aleksandr Gauk
Musical Directors, St Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra
Succeeded by
Evgeny Mravinsky


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