Discover How the Most Beautiful Coin in the World Makes Music
By Rich Checkan
If you are a fan of classical music, you will be thrilled with what awaits you at the Austrian Cultural Forum in New York City this month. The Forum is commemorating the 175th anniversary of both the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. In late February, ASI co-founder Michael Checkan attended the kick-off celebration that was sponsored by the Austrian Mint.
The Austrian Mint is known worldwide for their gold, silver and platinum Vienna Philharmonic coins, often referred to as the most beautiful coins in the world. The Mint’s roots were planted in 1194 when Richard the Lionheart secured his freedom by paying 12 tons of silver to the Austrian Duke Leopold V. In this interview with Gerhard Starsich, General Director and CEO of the Austrian Mint, you will discover the charming details of this golden musical relationship and how you can own the iconic Philharmonic with valuable free bonuses.
Rich: Can you explain the historical connection between the Vienna Philharmonic and the Austrian Mint?
Gerhard: With pleasure. In 1989, the Austrian Mint decided to strike a coin that represented our country. After much debate, which included choices like the Spanish Lipizzaner Stallions, we hit upon the idea of the Vienna Philharmonic, as a symbol of democracy, art and music that has worldwide appeal.
Rich: How are the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and the Philharmonic coin associated with democracy?
Gerhard: From its inception, the Vienna Philharmonic was run very differently than other world orchestras. All artistic and other decisions are made by its members on a democratic basis. All these decisions, in turn, are implemented by an elected committee of twelve.
Rich: What is the significance of the Austrian Mint celebrating the 175th anniversary in New York City and Vienna?
Gerhard: First, by coincidence, if we believe in coincidence, the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra were both founded in 1842. The Austrian Cultural Forum in New York City will present an exhibit of important archives from the history of both orchestras from February 23rd to March 19th. The exhibit will then move to Vienna. People from all over the world can enjoy these historical items through a virtual tour on both orchestras’ websites. The Austrian Mint is very proud to sponsor the initial event and be part of all the proceedings to come.
Rich: Give us a taste of the evening as it unfolded.
Gerhard: The event began with music played by members of each orchestra. Then, attendees had the chance to view the archives at a private showing, which included an 1885 letter by Brahms, an 1897 letter by Mahler and a handwritten note from Lenard Bernstein, who was the first American to conduct the Vienna Philharmonic. By the way, his daughter Jaimie also attended the evening. So, there is a palpable connection between the orchestras.
Rich: What is the significance of the Vienna Philharmonic in the realm of investment coins?
Gerhard: Sebastian Kurz, the Austrian Federal Minister for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, said at the event, “Austria is a small country, but a musical super power.” At the Austrian Mint, we like to think our Philharmonic coin is the tangible expression of the beauty and experience of music. Music is deeply personal, and I feel our coin investors are appreciative of the beauty and art of the Philharmonic.
Rich: As an investment, how do you distinguish yourself from other minted varieties?
Gerhard: We have over 800 years of coin-making history. 450 million coins a year are produced at the Mint, including some of the world’s best-selling bullion and collector coins. We will never sacrifice the quality or purity of our coins, and we keep very tight reins through limited mintage. Every owner of our coins knows they have something of sustained value.
Rich: What is the best way for our readers to build a legacy with the iconic Philharmonic?
Gerhard: Many Philharmonic investors make this a family affair. We recently implemented an eighteen-coin presentation box at the suggestion of the Mint’s Director of Marketing and Sales, Andrea Lang. You can add coins to this presentation box as you make your gifts. When filled, the box is a great investment and a lasting legacy.
Rich: How can ASI readers take advantage of a short-term offer of Philharmonics with an exciting bonus presentation set?
Gerhard: There are several different bonus opportunities with your readers’ purchases of gold and silver Philharmonics. For example, one bonus is the beautiful 1-ounce silver Austrian Philharmonic coin that’s free with a minimum order. For larger purchases, there is an additional bonus of the Mint’s special edition 175th Anniversary Silver duet set containing the commemorative anniversary coin plus the 1-ounce silver Austrian Philharmonic coin.
ASI would like to thank General Director Starsich for his hospitality and generous sharing of this valuable information.
We’re excited to partner with the Austrian Mint to giveaway FREE 1-ounce silver Austrian Philharmonics and a limited edition 175th Anniversary Silver duet set with qualifying orders. Call us at 800-831-0007 and speak to one of ASI's Preferred Client Relations representatives for your FREE silver coins.