Knessl Lothar

General Information

Year of Birth:  1927
Date of Birth:  15. April 1927
Place of Birth:  Brno (Brünn)
Country of Birth: 


Lothar Knessl is an Austrian music-journalist and champion of new and experimental music. Knessl is today one of the most prominent personalities of musical life in Austria.
He is also a composer himself: His compositions include choral works, songs, chamber music and a cantata for soloists and large orchestra.


PeriodEducationInstrumentTeacherEducation OrganisationLocation

Conservatory Brno: studies

1950 - 1956

music- and theater-studies

1950 - 1956


1950 - 1956


1957 - 1960



1947 - 1949

prefect and substitute chapel-master

1960 - 1967

cultural journalist, i.a. for the daily newspaper "Neues Österreich"

1967 - 1971

dispatcher and editor of the program-booklets

1967 - 2016

design of the program "Studio Neuer Musik" (later renamed "Zeit-Ton"); observer and rapporteur of the ORF music-protocol

1971 - 1986

head of the press office of the Austrian Federal Theater Holding, responsible for the editing of the program-booklets of the State Opera and the Volksoper

1972 - 1974

corresponding member of the program-board

1986 - 1991

spokes-person and editor of the monthly newspaper "Wiener Staatsoper aktuell"

1988 - 1991

member of the board of programme-advisors and editor


ever since coordinator and juror of the "Vienna International Composition Competition" (now "Erste Bank composition commission")

1992 - 2000


1993 - 1996

music-curator of the Federal Ministry of Education and Art (together with Christian Scheib)

1994 - 2001

co-founder and president of the music information center austria (mica)

production-assistant and composer for commercials; active as a singer in the Vienna Chamber Choir, in the Wiener Singverein and in the choir of the Burgtheater

publications in countless newspapers and journals, i.a. in "Neue Forum" and "Heute", "Opernwelt", "Theater heute" and in "Melos"

Institute of Musicology: lectures on music history and music theater of the 20th century

organization of numerous festivals for new music, i.a. "World Music Festival" at Graz (1972 and 1982), "Long Night of New Sounds" and "Open Regions"


PeriodAwardCompositionAwarding Organisation

awarded the professional title "Professor"


Decoration in Silver


Decoration in Gold


honorary membership