First woman faculty head walks out on Vienna

First woman faculty head walks out on Vienna


norman lebrecht

May 12, 2015

Regula Rapp, who was due to become Rector of the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien in October, has withdrawn from the post. Dr Rapp, 53, said the legitimacy of her appointment was ‘too precarious’.

There has been opposition to a woman taking the post – for the first time – and huge payoffs were being demanded by other faculty members.

Vienna never changes.

Staatliche Hochschule fuer Musik und darstellende Kunst Stuttgart

See also here.


  • Jorge says:

    Indeed no “Vienna never changes”, sorry to say this, no opposition to a woman taking the post. The other candidate, the internal preferred one, also was a woman!

  • william osborne says:

    Hmm. The University Council overrode the recommendation of the Faculty Senate and appointed Regula Rapp, who the Senate listed as their second choice, instead of the Senate’s first choice, Ulrike Sych. Sych is currently Vize-Rektorin, hence the view that insiders are at work to keep outside influences away. Sych has requested a legal review of the University Council’s decision. Interesting that both candidates are women. The professors for wind instruments at the Musik Uni are taken almost exclusively from the VPO, thus making it all but impossible to hire any women for those teaching positions.

  • JayPee says:

    Meanwhile, still less African-Americans in the “top five” American orchestras than women in the Vienna Philharmonic. And no sign that this situation will change soon.

    USA doesn’t change.

    Seriously, this daily Germany/Austrian bashing borders on the pathetic…

    • william osborne says:

      About 60% of the students at Vienna’s University of Music are women, and have been for decades, while they were entirely excluded by the VPO. African-Americans only have a small representation among classical music students, and they are not excluded from orchestras (or at least not for the last 50 years or so.) This isn’t to minimize the problems you mention, but you are missing fundamentally important aspects of the history of discrimination in the VPO and some other orchestras like the Berlin and Czech Philharmonics. They still have massive under-representations of women even though many highly qualified women musicians are available. (This is belaboring the obvious, of course, but perhaps it needs to be said.)

      • Stereo says:

        Maybe bad pay in lesser orchestras,especially in UK may account for the higher percentage of ladies in those orchestras?

      • JayPee says:

        Are all these women Austrian? Is it possible that these women study in Vienna and go back to their countries once they’ve completed their studies? Can you provide a complete picture since you seem so well-informed?

        Why aren’t the American orchestras more attractive to African Americans? Could it be that they make sure that no African Americans will ever be tempted to join them? Why isn’t this topic addressed for a change? BTW, the other candidate for the Rector position at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien was also a woman. I think Mr. Lebrecht was a little too quick with his daily Austria bashing… But, hey, I guess that’s OK. After all, xenophobia is a variable geometry game.

        BTW, the Vienna Philharmonic has more women than there are African Americans in the top five American orchestras. Do you think it is acceptable? Do you think it reflects reality? Shall we start discussing how the USA treats African Americans in general?

        Of course not, let’s find tomorrow’s topic for our daily Germany/Austria bashing…

      • Bviolinistic says:

        Needs to be said again, again and again, it seems…..

    • 5566hh says:

      Technically, that should be ‘fewer’ African-Americans, rather than ‘less’.