Music Festival 2019
of the Lazarus Union
A report by Christina Gellert
Pictures by Johann Wukovits
On September 14th 2019 a Music Festival of the Music Corps of the Lazarus Union took place for the first time at the ODEON-theatre in Vienna. Under the musical direction of Friedrich Lentner and Barbara Zisser the Music Corps showed five different musical styles during the evening.
In front of an impressive setting of the ODEON-theatre the event started exactly at 18:30 with the welcoming speech of the Chairman of the Music Corps and former General Plenipotentiary Senator Prof. h.c. Wolfgang Steinhardt.
The Brass Formation of the Music Corps formed the musical start with the overtures of the “Feuerwerksmusik” from Georg Friedrich Händel followed by a medley from George Gershwin and Ferdl’s Dixie from Johann Hausl.
The “Oberkrainer Formation” performed the “Slowenischen Bauerntanz” from A.V. Avsenik, then the “Alpenecho” from A.V. Avsenik and the “Gesundheitspolka” from Bernd Kreuzenberger. Both song titles were interpreted by Bernd Kreuzenberger. A special emphasis could be placed on the commitment of Edith Lentner who was perfectly able to show her skills to a wide audience – although she has only started to play harmonica one and a half year ago.
Afterwards the “Böhmische Blasmusik” played “Großvaters Uhr” from Henry Cly Work with an impressive tenorhorn-solo given by the Deputy Music Director Barbara Zisser. After the Bohemian Medley No. 2 there was a 20-minute break. In the reception area of the theatre canapés and drinks were offered free of charge.
After the break the short the official ceremony of the event began. At the beginning the Brass Band performed the “Festmusik der Stadt Wien” from Richard Strauß. Wolfgang Steinhardt opened the official part and immediately he passed the word to the Deputy General Plenipotentiary Oliver Gruber-Lavin to give his ceremonial address (you will find the exact wording of his speech at the end of the report). In his speech he explained the career of the Lazarus Union within the United Nations and furthermore reported about a new project of the Lazarus Union in Uganda/Africa.
The General Plenipotentiary gave a short address and announced awards and appointments. This part of the ceremony started with the signing and handing out of friendship decrees by and to the President of the “Association of Brass Music of Vienna” and Chairman of the partner band, the “Postmusik Wien”, Michael Foltinowsky. Furthermore he got a very special decoration from Wolfgang Steinhardt – the Great Honour Star in Silver of the Lazarus Union.
Afterwards the following persons were awarded: Edith Lentner got the Honour Medal Music Corps for her extraordinary skills playing the harmonica.
Then there were the following appointments:
Oliver Gruber-Lavin was appointed Special Ambassador CSLI with the East African Union EAC in order to coordinate preferably the activities in Africa.
Peter Domweber was appointed Navy Corps Commander. In the future he will lead the Navy Corps and will organize its activities.
Christian Volgger was appointed Deputy Group Commander and in the future he will care for our new group members.
Afterwards the Music Corps presented the “Lazarus March”. Wolfgang Steinhardt took the opportunity to replace Friedrich Lentner and to conduct himself.
The awards and appointments were followed by the song „Up where we belong“ from Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes and a medley of well-known songs of the operetta “Im Weißen Rössl”, interpreted by Michael Wagner and Lizzy Koroschitz who both showed their varied skills.
Our General Plenipotentiary and his wife took the opportunity to dance a waltz.
At the end of the Music Festival the Big Band played “That’s Life” from K. Gordon, “Let Me Try Again” from Paul Anka and “My Way” from Reveau/Francois. Walter “Frankie” Werner interpreted the songs and showed his extraordinary skills. He can definitely be compared with Frank Sinatra.
For his lifetime achievements he was honoured with the Great Honour Cross of the Lazarus Union for science, research and arts by the Chairman of the Music Corps, the Musical Director Fritz Lentner and the General Plenipotentiary Dr. Lothar Gellert.
Then the Chair Man of the Austrian Veteran’s Association ÖKB Guntramsdorf Karl Fleischhacker awarded Edith and Fritz Lentner for their humanitarian and comradely activities for the benefit of the ÖKB Guntramsdorf.
There was still some time left and so the Big Band played some songs of Glenn Miller while the “old” and the “new” General Plenipotentiary and their wives dynamically floated over the floor.
Despite numerous “encore calls” the concert could not be extended because the ODEON theater had to be vacated by 22.00 clock.
As a tribute to the audience the General Plenipotentiary Dr. Lothar Gellert, his predecessor Wolfgang Steinhardt (to the left) and the Music Director Friedrich Lentner (to the right) went to the edge of the stage bowing with joined hands. (The specific picture will follow soon)
Here the speach of the Secretary General Oliver Gruber-Lavin:
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen!
Dear guests of the Lazarus Union!
The LAZARUS UNION (Union Corps Saint Lazarus International, CSLI) is an independent state-approved and officially registered non-profit relief association recognised as non-governmental organisation by the United Nations and „with the General Consultative Status with the United Nations“.
The name „Lazarus“ is a synonym for mercy, charity and humanity. Also the name „Lazarett“ and „Lazariter“ derives from the Holy Lazarus and was firstly mentioned in a document in 344 post Christ.
Hardly anyone could imagine in 2006, when our former and founding General Plenipotentiary Senator Prof. hc. Wolfgang Steinhardt founded the predecessor organization of the Lazarus Union after a five-year stay abroad, what success his foundation would have.
Over the course of less than a decade and a half, this association has become an organization with more than 22.000 members in over 120 countries worldwide.
You can read in our statutes:
„…the LAZARUS UNION stands for international understanding and peace on earth. It advocates human and children’s rights as well as justice and equal rights and feels obligated to the values of the United Nations…“
It is precisely at this interface between the Lazarus Union and the United Nations that I would like to point out this development as a worldwide organization at a few, but significant Milestones:
|2006||Foundation of the predecessor organisation of the present LU. Over time, this foundation became an organization with more than 22.000 members in more than 120 countries around the world.|
|2010||On December 8th 2010 inaugural General Assembly. Senator Prof. h.c. Wolfgang Steinhardt was elected as President and Union Commander.|
|2013||March 2013 registration as NGO within the United Nations, we were one of 24.000 registered and more than 300.000 listed NGOs.|
|2014||In May 2014 the Lazarus Union got the „Special Consultative Status“ with the United Nation Economic and Social Council, now we were one of 4.342 top NGOs within the United Nation This was mainly due to our comrade Erich Kadletz, at that time General Secretary who died too soon.
This „Special Consultative Status“ means inter alia: named and accredited representatives of the LAZARUS UNION within the United Nations! Seven representatives in New York, Geneva and Vienna.
This representatives are not only granted the „Observer Status“, but they can also wish to speak and can make applications on behalf of the LAZARUS UNION.
|2015||Lazarus Day at VIC /UNO-City – Donation to UNHCR.
In 2015, in addition to the 1st anniversary of the granting of the Consultative Status within the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), there was another anniversary to be celebrated. The Union also celebrated its 5th anniversary in its present form. As part of the event at the VIC, a donation cheque and the Grand Cross of the UN-NGO Memorial Cross for the UNHCR were handed over by the President of the Union to the head of the Austrian office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Dr. Christoph Pinter.
|2017||Nomination for the Nobel Prize.
The Lazarus Union was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize 2017 by a well-known professor of one of the best universities in Europe (among the 60 top-universities in Europe and among the 200 top-universities of 12.000 universities worldwide)
|2019||Unanimous granting of the General Status (140) by the representatives of 19 states at the ECOSOC plenary, so that we are now one of the 140 top NGOs in the world.
In Austria only the INSTITUTE FOR APPLIED SYSTEMS ANALYSIS in Laxenburg has been granted the „General Status“ since 1995. So the Lazarus Union is just the second NGO n Austria and the first NGO since almost 25 years with this status.
|2020||Outlook for the 10th anniversary|
In less than ten years, the Lazarus Union has thus evolved from a small local association to a global non-governmental organization incorporated into the elite NGOs by the United Nations. In particular, it should be noted that all this could be reached WITHOUT any state funding, only self-financed. Furthermore the Union has NO paid officials in contrast to (almost) all other NGOs of this magnitude.
This is indeed unique!
LAZARUS UNION – CSLI is also committed to the goals of the UN Global Compact (a global pact that aims to make globalization more social and ecological between NGOs, businesses and the UN). They aim to protect the environment, promote human rights, guarantee international labour standards and combat corruption. LAZARUS UNION – CSLI is always aware of this responsibility towards the environment and society and the importance of the sustainability principle.
This commitment, the nomination for the Peace Nobel Prize and now the granting of the “General Consultative Status” are not only a further challenge for the LAZARUS UNION to prove internationally. It also means the commitment to fully support and to promote the aims and the spirit of the United Nations.
Right now, the Lazarus Union is working on a pilot project in East Africa, in Uganda on the shores of Lake Victoria, to implement meaningful projects – projects that come from the country and are not planned by any state or organization far from the people.
Specifically it is a vocational training for young men and a career start or re-entry for single women with children, who, in addition to a meaningful and fairly paid job, also have a new home, with training for the youngest and basic medical care for all.
According to our slogan “Viribus Unitis” and true to our motto “Everyone can do something – Let’s create new perspectives together” it is our goal to live for the future to live charity towards all needy people, regardless of ethnicity, religion, social status, gender, age – true to the humanistic goals of St. Lazarus – tolerance, humility, mercy and charity and charity!