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Celebrity Sängerknaben

Sigrid Pichler and Gabriele Wolf of the Austrian National Tourist Office report that a number of famous composers have emerged from the choir's ranks:

Joseph Haydn, although a member of the Cathedral Choir of St. Stephen's, sang with the court choir boys in the chapel of the Hofburg and in the newly built palace of Schönbrunn. Franz Schubert's first compositions were written as a member of the Court Choir Boys. (He was always in trouble with his teachers because he was more interested in composing and making music than in getting good grades in his schoolwork.) After Schubert's voice lost its bell-like alto quality in 1812, he had to leave the choir. At his departure, he wrote a note on a musical score that is now preserved in Austria's National Library: "F. Schubert, zum letzten Mal gekräht. (F. Schubert has crowed for the last time.)"

Obtaining concert tickets in Vienna

The Vienna Boys' Choir has regularly scheduled masses and choir concerts in the Imperial Chapel of the Hofburg Palace in Vienna. In addition, the choir and smaller groups of Sängerknaben make appearances with the Staatsoper and the Volksoper, Vienna's two major opera companies. For tickets, contact the performance venues directly by telephone or by visiting the Web sites below. (In the case of the Imperial Chapel, e-mail h[email protected] for ticket information. But see the reader warning about seating and sightlines before you place your order.)

Web sites

Wiener Sängerknaben
The Vienna Boys' Choir Web site has a concert schedule, a discography, photos, and other information in German and English.

Wiener Staatsoper
The Vienna State Opera's site is in German, so translate with AltaVista.

Volksoper Wien
Opera, operetta, musical comedy, and dance make up the eclectic schedule of the People's Opera. In German; translate with AltaVista.

Introduction Ticket info, Web sites

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