Teddy Ehrenreich Big Band
Rudolf „Teddy“ Ehrenreich was born in vienna in 1936. His interest in jazz began in secondary school and in the early 50’s he was lead bands which performed in clubs such as „Adebar“ and „Tabarin“. He spent the better part of the later 50’s as a band leader in Germany after becoming acquainted with Fatty George. Upon returning to Austria at the beginning of the 60’s he founded his first Big Band – which he still leads to date.As of the end of the 60’s he worked for the ORF (the Austrian Broadcasting Station), firstly as a clarinet and saxplayer in the Orchestra Karel Krautgartner, later as the leader of his own formations, including among others Prof. Heinz Czadek. His Big Band was then and is today the “talent pool” from which many of the leading musicians, among them Martin Fuss, Christian Radovan, Bob Dodge and Fritz Ozmec emerged. Especially in those, days as there were no formal educational venues for Jazz in Austria, Teddy Ehrenreich’s Big Band presented of the rare possibilities for talented up-and-coming musicians to gather experience and prepare for their chosen professions. Later his band became the ideal “finishing school” for students in the jazz department of what is known today as the Private University of the City of Vienna (formerly Vienna Conservatory) where they can now play highly classed Big Band Jazz under highly professional conditions. Still, to this day, he fulfils the functions of an ideal mentor to the exceptionally talented.His band has accompanied a long list of soloists, among them: Eddie “Lockjaw” Davies, Harry ”Sweets” Edison, Joe Newman, Harold Jones, Jake Hanna, John Tomas, Clifford Adams, Pete & Conte Candoli, Hal Singer, Red Holloway, Don Menza as well as vocalists living in Vienna: Ines Reiger, Elly Wright, Barbara Pflüger and Carole Alston. His competence and knowledge in the area of big band jazz is impressive and the band has reaped high recognition from the guest stars, which have had pleasure to perform with them. In the past years the Teddy Ehrenreich Big Band has often been invited to perform at renowned festivals such as “Jazz over Villach”, “Jazzfest Wien” or for a jazzsymposium at the “Radiokulturhaus” in vienna.
Up until his stroke in 2000, Teddy Ehrenreich was treated and respected as the leading jazz clarinetist in Austria and the legitimate successor to Fatty George, who had set the bar for jazzclarinet very high. The viennese jazz scene is indebted to this fantastic musician for his substancial and continuing impulses. For these reasons,in 2004 and 2012 at the City Hall of Vienna, Teddy Ehrenreich was awarded some medals of honour of the city of vienna for his life-time accomplishments. Since 2012, his son Alexander Ehrenreich is the leader of the Teddy Ehrenreich Big Band.