The Vienna Thalia Quartet is one of the foremost representatives of classical Viennese folk-music. Numerous concerts in Europe as well as performances all over the world, especially in the Asian region, have made the quartet well known, also beyond Austrias borders, so that the four musicians are regularly invited to perform in Japan, for example.
All the members of the Vienna Thalia Quartet are graduates of the Viennese Music Academy, and regularly perform in the Vienna State Opera House. In Europe they rank among the musical elite, and seen on a world-wide scale, their position is assured.
The Vienna Thalia Quartet was founded in 1986 under the name "Thalia Schrammeln" by four musicians who wished to apply their high degree of professionality to classical folk-music. Their repertoire includes polkas, marches, waltzes, as well as dances by the Schrammel brothers, the dynasty Strauß, Franz Schubert, Joseph Lanner and other composers of that time. It includes more than 300 works, and is being constantly expanded.
The combination of instruments, namely two violins, a G-clarinet and a contra-guitar gives the unforgettable sound according to the tradition of the time of Schrammel, Strauß and their contemporaries. Thus, the ensemble plays only in Schrammels historical instrumentation, that is, using the G-clarinet and not the accordeon, which is traditionally incorrect. The G-clarinet is a special type of clarinet, allowing the playing of very high notes, and demanding of the performer the greatest precision.
With the assistance of Professor Walter Deutsch, head of the Institute for Folk Music Research at the University of Vienna, long and meticulously detailed work and the study of original manuscripts by the Schrammel brothers their contemporaries have made it possible to reconstruct works in their original version, thus enabling the Vienna Thalia Quartet to bring them back to life.
Today, the Vienna Thalia Quartet is one of the few ensembles which can continue this old tradition, with its technical refinements, offering musical quality at the highest level.
Not only does the quartet perform concerts, but there are frequent television appearances in Austria and Japan.
A CD "Music from Old Vienna" forms an acoustical documentation.
A glance at the biographies of the quartets members will show many similarities all four play in Austrias best orchestras, such as the Vienna Philharmonic, and have already worked with the most important conductors of our time, such as Herbert von Karajan, Zubin Mehta, Karl Böhm, Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Muti or Leonard Bernstein.
They perform each year at the Salzburg Music Festival, and make numerous television appearances and CD recordings with various orchestras.