Interview with Siegfried Steinkogler











Siegried Steinkogler
(nachdenklich mit Gitarre
[note only for german speaking visitors])
Siegfried Steinkogler  will perform  new works by Austrian composers. 

Interview with Siegfried Steinkogler:

Question: Who do you think is the most overrated and the most underrated composer for the classical guitar?

Siegried Steinkogler:
The most underrated composer? Myself! - No, just a joke... Maybe Barna Kovats is a little bit underrated as a composer for the guitar - concerning the fact that his music was edited by some of the most renowned publishers! In general I believe that there is no over- or underrated composer, as it is no accident to have success as a composer. Maybe some people of the younger generation are underrated by now, but time and the audience will decide about the quality of their work, as it always used to be!


Question: Which „Slogan“ would you use in advertising for the classical guitar?

Siegried Steinkogler:
"Gitarre - genießen Sie die Leichtigkeit des Seins!" ("Guitar - enjoy the ease of being!")


Question: With which prejudices – that are connected with the classical guitar – would you like to get rid of?

Siegried Steinkogler:
With the prejudice that there exists an instrument which is more important than the guitar! Even producing a sound on the guitar is a complicated and very personal thing (it can be done in hundreds of ways) so that I believe the sound of the guitar belongs to the most beautiful things in the world. And - last but not least - the prejudice that the guitar´s repertoire is inferior to any other instrument´s repertoire.If you would start playing concerts now, it would take decades to play all the beautiful works that have been written for the guitar during the last centuries!

Question: Which attributes do you find typical for classical guitarists?

Siegried Steinkogler:
talking about finger-nails, fingerings ....


Question: What things in your life do you definitely want to learn and what do you regret not having done?

Siegried Steinkogler:
In general I am satisfied with what I did. I want to increase my knowledge of the Spanish language, moreover I'd say my whole life is permanent learning - these days I am busy with celtic languages and old celitc myths for my guitar opera "Blodeuwedd". 


Question: What dreams do you have that you would like to fulfil?

Siegried Steinkogler:
To read "Don Quixote" by Cervantes in the Spanish original. And - though it may sound strange - to do a performance playing the guitar and the harmonica at the same time. As a musician and as a composer this would be an artistic challenge for me.


Question: What is embarrassing for you?

Siegried Steinkogler:
When people talk about things they do not understand!


Question: What short phrase would you use to discribe your lifes philosophy?

Siegried Steinkogler:
go on doing what you are doing


Question: Which abuse in your native country would you like to do away with?

Siegried Steinkogler:
The Austrian superstition that everybody is an artist. 


Question: In relation to world history, which personalities fascinate you the most?

Siegried Steinkogler:
People, who believe(d) in the power of peace: Dalai Lama, Berta von Suttner, Mutter Teresa, John Lennon and many , many more


Question: Which question would you like to be asked and what is your answer to this question?

Siegried Steinkogler:
Where could you imagine to stay for a longer time? - Madrid, as it is so full of life ...


Question: Which guitar virtuoso today has the makings to follow in the footsteps of Andres Segovia?

Siegried Steinkogler:
No one! But anyway it is not necessary to follow Segovia´s footsteps, every guitarist has to follow his own way! (What a funny cartoon: the giant Segovia and all those tiny little dwarfs following his footpath carrying guitars across their shoulders...)


Thank you very much Siegfried for this interview.

Jovan Pesec

Biography of Siegried Steinkogler



The Austrian composer and guitarist Siegfried Steinkogler was born the 17.06.1968 in Bad Ischl and lives in Oberndorf near Salzburg.

At the University Mozarteum Salzburg he studied guitar with  B. Kováts, E. Fisk and J. Clerch, composition with G. Wimberger and R. Febel as well as with G. Waldek at the Bruckner University in Linz/Austria.

Steinkogler was awarded both degrees at Mozarteum Salzburg “mit Auszeichnung”.

In 2002/03 Steinkogler moved to Madrid where he studied Spanish contemporary guitar works (e.g. A. García Abríl), which he has performed quite often in his concerts and tours through Austria, Germany, Italy, Norway, Spain and the Czech Republic. One of Steinkogler´s recent works was his treatise about his teacher "The guitar works of Barna Kováts or the art of miniature", which he has already presented in Salzburg as well as at the prestigious International Guitar Festival of Rust/Austria together with his own elementary work called "Guitar-Album, part 1-3".

As a composer Steinkogler is not only dedicated to the guitar. Especially his orchestral works "Die Ebene am See", Concerto for harmonica and orchestra, "Inconcertamiento" for harp and Ensemble and "Liebelei" for chamber orchestra have already been performed in Siena, Arezzo, Firenze, Sofia, Madrid, Prague, Oslo, Salzburg and Vienna.

Works like these plus his chamber music and solo pieces for various instruments have culminated in prizes like

Ø Prize for „Duo for Flute and Guitar“ (1988), 1. Int. Composer´s Competition Berlin.
Ø 1. Prize for „Kapriolen“ for guitar solo (1997), Int. Composer´s Competition Passau/D
Ø Scholarship of the Mozarteum/Salzburg for extraordinary efficiency (1988,1993)
Ø Talentförderungsprämie of Upper Austria for composition (1998)
Ø Würdigungspreis of the Ministery for Education, Science and Culture (2002)
Ø Staatsstipendium of the Republic of Austria (2002)
Ø Prize for "Mountain Mass" for mixed choir in Salzburg (2004) 

and the Anton-Bruckner-Scholarship from the land Upper Austria for the Music- and Dance-Theatre “Blodeuwedd” in 2006.

Since 2003 Siegfried Steinkogler is acting as the Artistic Director of Salzburg String Festival and Salzkammergut String Festival, both of them especially dedicated to Contemporary Music.





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