Anton Heiller

Heiler-1Anton Heiller (1923 – 1979) was an Austrian organist, harpsichordist, composer, and conductor. Born in Vienna, he was first trained in church music by Wilhelm Mück, organist of Vienna’s Stephansdom with further study at the Vienna Academy of Music under Bruno Seidlhofer and Friedrich Reidinger. In 1945, he both graduated from the Academy and was appointed organ teacher there. He was promoted to professor in 1957. In 1952 he won the International Organ Competition in Haarlem, The Netherlands. His students include Yuko Hayashi, Bernard Lagacé, Peter Planyavsky, Michael Radulescu, Christa Rakich, Christa Rumsey, David Sanger, and Jean-Claude Zehnder.


Anton Heiller: Organist, Composer, Conductor
by Peter Planyavsky and Christa Rumsey
Eastman Studies in Music, University of Rochester Press (November 1, 2014)

Heiller’s performances as a competitor in the 1953 Haarlem Improvisation Competition can be heard at the NCRV archive here.

1953 Haarlem Improvisation Themes

Improv-Themes-2At the 1953 Haarlem Improvisation Competition, the contestants were Paul Barras, Anton Heiller, Piet Kee (winner), Matthieu Prange and Karl Richter. Adriaan Engles provided the themes and asked for a Sonata in three movements according to the instructions shown with the themes. Thanks to the NCRV archives it is possible to hear the improvisations of the finalists (Anton Heiller, Piet Kee and Karl Richter) through the links below:

Many other improvisations and performances are available through the NCRV archives here.