The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra is still often called “Nazi-Orchestra”, as the past has been haunting them for many years. Will the brown shadow of Austria’s most important cultural export ever fade away? This extraordinary documentary highlights the consistency with which the Vienna Philharmonics charged a commission of historians to clear their past. The archives were opened to Prof. Rathkolb, Dr. Trümpi and Mag. Mayrhofer, the most established critics amongst historians in Austria. Director Robert Neumüller accompanied the team down to the deepest basement of the State Opera where sensational new files could be found. The closer you look, the more the shining image of the orchestra during the Nazi era crumbles. Especially their Jewish members had to face a tragic reality: They were dismissed, seven of them died, thereof five in concentration camps. Others were able to escape and could emigrate, such as concertmaster Arnold Rosé, whose daughter was arrested in Holland. She conducted the orchestra for women until her death in Auschwitz. The work of the historians revealed a lot of completely unknown shades. Archive material that has never been shown before gives fascinating insights into the Nazi past of Austria’s most famous orchestra. Finally, the film dissolves the captivating mystery of the ring of honor which was brought to Baldur Schirach in 1967.


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