Dr. Dietmar Gräf

Dr. Dietmar Gräf / Piano Music Festival

Dietmar Gräf was born in Marienbad, Sudetenland, in 1943 (as son of the director of music, solo trumpeter and violinist Dolf Gräf). After the forced displacement, residence and school attendance in Bayreuth. Studies of Church Music (A-Diploma), School Music for secondary school, Composition as well as Concert Piano and Conducting in Regensburg, Würzburg, Munich and under Prof. Swarowsky (Vienna).

At the Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich, he passed the Magister Artium exam and the Doctorate in Musicology, Didactics of Music and Pedagogy.

In his professional life, he worked as teacher of the Regensburger Domspatzen (famous Cathedral Choir of Regensburg), as cathedral director of music in Eichstätt, as high school teacher in Mindelheim, Bamberg and Munich, and as a lecturer in Music Pedagogy at the University of Munich.

Gräf founded the Förderkreis für Symphonie- und Kammerkonzerte (sponsoring circle for symphony and chamber concerts) as well as the musica sacra choir in Bad Wörishofen. He gave over 2000 concerts, composed over 500 works and is regularly invited as conductor by renowned symphony orchestras, mainly from the Czech Republic. Numerous concert tours, both at home and abroad. Film, radio, television and sound recordings. 5 years artistic director and musical leader of the Kneipp Music Festival in Bad Wörishofen. Appointed member of the Sudetendeutsche Akademie der Wissenschaften und Künste (Sudeten German Academy of Sciences and Arts) and the Künstlergilde (Guild of Artists).

Major awards: the Janacek gold medal by State President Havel, a gold medal by Pope Benedict XVI, the Sudeten German Culture Prize for Music, the Johann Wenzel Stamitz Prize and the Pro Arte Medal of the Guild of Artists, as well as the Federal Cross of Merit on ribbon. Since 2014 head of the music division of the Guild of Artists.

Gräf has written books on Music Education, on Gregorian chant, and collaborated on the textbook series "Spielpläne Musik" (6 volumes). His compositions include almost all popular kinds of instrumentation (including works for choir, organ, orchestra, piano, ensemble, songs).

Since 2015 juror in international piano competitions. In 2016 he became Deputy Federal Chairman of the Guild of Artists with almost 400 members in Germany and abroad. Since 2017 jury chairman for the Johann Wenzel Stamitz Prize.

A selection of awards, prizes and memberships:

1979 Honorary Member of the National Theater Prague

1986 Badge of Honor of the district of Unterallgäu (district in the southwestern part of Bavaria)

1988 Silver Medal of Merit of the city of Bad Wörishofen

Between 1989 and 92 Janacek Gold Medal by State President Havel

1999 Appointed member of the Guild of Artists in Esslingen

2001 Sudeten German Culture Prize for Music, presented by Bavarian Minister President Stoiber and State Assembly President Böhm

2003 Golden Medal of Merit of the city of Bad Wörishofen and admission as a composer in the GEMA

2004 Federal Cross of Merit on ribbon by Federal President Rau and appointment as a full member of the Sudeten German Academy of Sciences and Arts

2009 Gold Medal by Pope Benedict on the occasion of his third performance as a conductor and organist in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome

2010 Johann Wenzel Stamitz Prize by the Guild of Artists (located in Esslingen)

2013 Pro Arte Medal of the Guild of Artists