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Vijay Upadhyaya

Vijay Upadhyaya was born in Lucknow, India. He studied at the Music University in Graz, Austria and pursued diploma studies in Indian percussion and dance in India. He also has a Bachelor of Arts in English literature, economics and history.

In 1994 he became director of the Vienna University Philharmony. This involves the annual coordination of approximately 50 concerts for nine choirs, two orchestras and six conductors.

Since 2009 he has been conductor and composer for the Chinese National Orchestra and Chorus, who commissioned him to write his 2nd Symphony, “Chang’An Men”, in 2016. This is the first large commission awarded by the People's Republic of China to a non-Chinese composer. In addition he is an expert appointed by the Chinese government in connection with developing cultural activities in China.

His 1st Symphony, “Prayer Flags”, was premiered in 2014 and is a milestone in his musical development. The work is based on Indian literature and melodies.

He is the Austrian representative on the jury of experts for the evaluation of European Union culture projects and is the founder and artistic director of the India National Youth Orchestra.

He has organized/overseen/initiated projects at the State Opera, the Musikverein and Konzerthaus in Vienna, the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Academia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome, the Hamburg Schauspielhaus and the National Centres of Performing Arts in Beijing and Mumbai.

Amongst other activities, he used to be music director at the Karlskirche in Vienna, lecturer at the Graz Music University, director of the Iran-Austria Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in Tehran and conductor of the Providencia of Philharmonic Orchestra in Santiago de Chile as well as the director of a European Union programme in Turkey. He was in charge of/managed several projects for the Austria Foreign Ministry in more than 20 countries worldwide.


Veronika Schmid

Deputy General Director, Choir Conductor

Born in Klagenfurt, Veronika Schmid studied music pedagogy and recorder at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna with focus on conducting. Since October 2000, Veronika is conductor at the Vienna University Philharmonic. Since 2003, she is also working as freelancer for the music publishing company Universal Edition.


Barbara Hofko

Orchestral and Choral Conducting

Barbara Hofko was born and raised in Upper Austria and studied music pedagogy and conducting at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna, at the Vienna University and at the Vienna Conservatory. Since then she conducted concerts at the Vienna Musikverein and across Europe, in Azerbaijan, Turkey and India and led several orchestra workshops.


Danutė Samytė-Ganahl

Choral Conducting

Danutė Samytė-Ganahl studied choral and orchestra conducting at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre and at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna and finished her studies 2013/14 in Vienna (with distinction in choral conducting). She is a music teacher at a Viennese private school sings as soprano in the Arnold Schoenberg Choir and is regularly performing as a piano accompanist.


Wolfgang Lüstenöder

PR and Event Management

Wolfgang Lüstenöder, born in Styria, studied art history at the Vienna University and is singing in the Philharmonic Choir since 2014. He is responsible for public relations, as well as concert and event management.


Karin Klier

Graphic Design, Web

Karin Klier, born in Vienna, worked for the daily newspaper “Der Standard” and has been managing her own graphics studio since 1994. Since 2004 she is a member of the Women’s Symphonic Choir.
She is responsible for the graphic design of the Philharmonic.


Michael Weingartner


Michael Weingartner, born in Vienna, studied economic computer science and holds experience as system administrator since 15 years. Since 2018 he is working as system administrator at the Vienna University Philharmonic.


Nicola Kraml

Managing Director, Innovationszentrum Universität Wien GmbH

Nicola Kraml, born in Vienna majored in American and German Studies at the University of Vienna and the University of Maryland, USA. Since 2013, she has been acting as Director of the University of Vienna’s Language Center and since 2019 also as Managing Director of the Innovationszentrum Universität Wien GmbH, a 100%-owned subsidiary of the University of Vienna in which also hosts the Vienna University Philharmony.

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