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 Fuller Up The Dead Musician Directory 
 
     Georg Tintner 
     Georg Tintner 
      October 2, 1999 
      Age 82  
 
Self-Defenistration 
    
    
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OBITUARY 
        
 
The Halifax Herald Limited 
Ill health led to Tintner's suicide 
 
                      Conductor needed career, wife says  

                      By Kelly Shiers / Staff Reporter 

                      World-renowned symphony conductor 
                      Georg Tintner often said music kept him 
                      alive. 

                      Until this weekend, few may have realized 
                      how much he truly meant those words.  

                      On Saturday, less than a week after his last 
                      performance, the 82-year-old took his 
                      own life by jumping from the balcony of his 
                      11th-floor Halifax apartment. He died in 
                      hospital.  

                      "He'd had cancer for some time and been 
                      in a lot of pain," his wife, Tanya Tintner 
                      said Sunday. "While he could still make 
                      music, he kept going." 

                  But in the last few weeks, her husband was 
                  having trouble and couldn't bear the thought of having to cancel two upcoming 
                  concerts.  

                  "He realized he couldn't give anymore, so he took what was, to him, the 
                  honourable way out."  

                  From 1987 to 1994, Mr. Tintner led Symphony Nova Scotia during a time of 
                  change and growth.  

                  In the years that followed, he would return to the stage with his fellow musicians 
                  as the orchestra's conductor laureate. In the coming months, he was scheduled to 
                  make a half-dozen appearances with the symphony.  

                  "I think if you think of the orchestra, you think of Tintner," said Bob Geraghty, 
                  Symphony Nova Scotia's board president.  

                  Music lovers knew they were about to hear something special when Mr. Tintner 
                  came to the podium.  

                  And musicians were inspired with every movement of his hands through the air.  

                  "This is a great loss to all of us in the musical community," said Shimon Walt, a 
                  member of Symphony Nova Scotia and a close friend of Mr. Tintner's.  

                  "Definitely, he was very passionate about his music. . . . He was very inspirational 
                  as a conductor and as a person. I was always looking up to him."  

                  Mr. Tintner's passion for music was legendary.  

                  "He could hold you as a player and as a listener," said symphony member 
                  Margaret Isaacs. "The people in the audience can see our faces as players, but 
                  we got to see his face. . . . He would just radiate his joy of music."  

                  Max Kasper joined the symphony the same year Mr. Tintner became its music 
                  director, but first met him when Mr. Tintner came from Australia as a guest 
                  conductor for the National Youth Orchestra.  

                  Mr. Kasper said Mr. Tintner loved Mozart. Perhaps surprisingly, he also enjoyed 
                  Strauss waltzes, which are often viewed as "a bit of a drag" or "old hat" to many 
                  musicians.  

                  "But he saw these were really fabulous gems," Mr. Kasper said. Because of his 
                  obvious love, "you just wanted to play your best."  

                  Born in Vienna, Mr. Tintner was just a teenager when he began conducting his 
                  own musical compositions for the Vienna Boys Choir.  

                  As a young Jewish man, he made a desperate escape from the persecution of 
                  Nazis who had taken control of Vienna in 1938.  

                  Eventually, he made his way to New Zealand, and then on to Australia, where he 
                  spent most of his conducting career.  

                  While he still kept a home in Australia, he was a fixture here in Nova Scotia.  

                  "He seemed to be a man of great and broad depths," Mr. Geraghty said. "You'd 
                  see him on the concert stage, dressed in evening wear conducting an orchestra . . 
                  . and the next day bicycling downtown with rubber boots. . . . Fans loved him."  

                  Mr. Tintner was a member of the Order of Canada and received the 
                  Commemorative Medal for the 125th Anniversary of Canadian Confederation, 
                  which cited him for "his significant contribution to compatriots, community and to 
                  Canada."  

                  He also received the Officer's Cross of the Austrian Order of Merit and the Silver 
                  Cross of Honour from the City and Province of Vienna.  

                  Earlier this year, the Nova Scotia Arts Council presented Mr. Tintner with the 
                  Portia White Prize in recognition of cultural and artistic excellence.  

                  Just a few months ago, Mr. Tintner spoke at a symphony fund-raiser in Chester.  

                  Although it was apparent Mr. Tintner wasn't feeling well, his only concern was the 
                  symphony and music, Mr. Geraghty said.  

                  "He spoke about the beauty of music and what we had inherited from all these 
                  great composers and our responsibility to make sure we retained it in some way." 

                  Mr. Tintner is survived by his wife Tanya and seven children by two previous 
                  marriages. 

    
      Conductor Georg Tintner Falls To Death From Balcony
                                        Conductor Georg
                                        Tintner, whose profile
                                        rose in recent years as
                                        the result of recordings
                                        of Bruckner's
                                        symphonies for the
                                        Naxos label, died this
                                        past Saturday, October
                                        2, from injuries
                                        sustained in a fall from
                                        the 11th story balcony
                     of his Nova Scotia home. 

                     Born in Vienna, Austria in 1917, Tintner played
                     piano and composed at an early age. In
                     1926-30 he belonged to the famed Vienna
                     Boys Choir, where he sang the three Bruckner
                     Masses under Bruckner student Franz Schalk's
                     direction. Tintner left the choir at age 13 to
                     enter the Vienna State Academy, where he
                     studied conducting with Felix Weingartner and
                     composition with Josef Marx. Tintner worked
                     as an assistant to Weingartner and Bruno
                     Walter and at 19 was named Assistant
                     Conductor at the Vienna Volksoper. 

                     When the Nazis entered Austria in 1938,
                     Tintner emigrated, settling in New Zealand and
                     later Australia, where he was Resident
                     Conductor of the National Opera, and later
                     Musical Director of the Municipal Orchestra in
                     Cape Town. In 1968 he moved to London,
                     conducting at Sadler's Wells, but returned to
                     Australia in 1971 and became Senior Resident
                     Conductor of the Australian Opera (Sydney
                     Opera House), among other positions. 

                     Tintner moved to Canada in 1987 to work as
                     the Music Director of Symphony Nova Scotia,
                     later becoming the ensemble's conductor
                     laureate. Though he made many guest
                     appearances, his career was undoubtedly
                     limited by his long residencies outside Europe
                     and the U.S. Nonetheless, he was a respected
                     opera conductor and symphonic interpreter,
                     always conducting without a baton. Though
                     not all of his Bruckner symphonies have yet
                     been released, he recorded all nine numbered
                     symphonies as well as the two unnumbered
                     ones, mostly with the Scottish National and
                     Irish National (RTE) orchestras. His Bruckner
                     style was noted for its warmth and measured
                     tempos. 

                                               -- Steve Holtje

 
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