Peter Schmidl, was born into a "Philharmonic
Family" on January 10, 1942 in Olomouc.
His grandfather, Alois, had been
engaged in Wiener Philharmoniker by the Opera Director
Wilhelm Jahn and First Conductor Hans Richter and was a
clarinettist from 1892-1914.
His father, Viktor, was employed
between the years 1921 and 1936, also as a clarinettist
at the State Opera and in the Vienna Philharmonic.
It was thus only natural that Peter
Schmidl, who received his Matura with honours (at which
time he performed Beethoven's Fourth Piano Concerto!),
continued his musical study in 1959 at the Vienna Music
with Rudolf Jettel, a Philharmonic
principal clarinettist at that time.
In 1964, after completing his
diploma exam with distinction, he continued his studies
Max Reinhardt Seminar in acting and stage direction, but
dropped this course of study after
successfully auditioning to become a member of the
Vienna State Opera Orchestra beginning on May 1, 1965.
He became a member of the Association of the Vienna
Philharmonic on September 1, 1968.
In the decades that followed, Peter
Schmidl distinguished himself as one of the outstanding
personalities on the musical scene. The variety of his
activities can only be outlined here in brief. Besides
his orchestral career, he has been a well-known
international soloist, receiving solo engagements with
the Vienna Philharmonic, the Lower Austrian Tonkünstler
Orchestra, the Salzburg Mozarteum Orchestra, and the New
Philharmonic Tokyo, among many others, thus performing
under the baton of such conductors as Leonard Bernstein,
Karl Böhm, Christoph von Dohnýani, Riccardo Muti and
As a chamber musician he performed
with the Vienna Octet and the Vienna Wind Soloists in
major musical centers worldwide. As a pedagogue, Schmidl,
who has been a teacher since 1967 and who was awarded
the title of Professor in 1985, has influenced many
generations of students, among which include four
members of our orchestra today.
Peter Schmidl, who has received many outstanding awards,
is an exceptional manager.
For many years he has worked with the Pacific Music
Festival in Sapporo and from 2001
through 2005 he was the business manager of our
In the year 2006, Professor Schmidl
was named doyen of the Vienna State Opera.
With Peter Schmidl, a towering
figure of our orchestra enters retirement after 45 years
of active service.