Caracas, 6 November 2009 Press release

Jazz legend Gerry Weil receives Decoration of Merit in Gold for services to the Republic of Austria

Venezuela-based composer and musician Gerhard Weilheim presented with award for his life's work

Caracas, 6 November 2009 - "With his work here in Venezuela Gerry Weil has built a cultural bridge between Austria and his second home country," stated the Austrian Ambassador in Caracas, Thomas Schuller-Götzburg, at the formal presentation of the Decoration of Merit in Gold for services to the Republic of Austria to jazz musician Gerry Weil.

Gerry Weil left Austria as a young man, having got to know and appreciate Glenn Miller’s music during Austria’s Allied occupation. He has been living in Venezuela for more than fifty years, working as a pianist, jazz musician and teacher, and has taught generations of musicians, focusing on harmony and jazz improvisation. His eclectic compositions constitute an impressive combination of Viennese music and Latin American sounds, including the songs of the Pemón Indians of Venezuela.

In August 2008, Weil received Venezuela’s highest award for musicians, the "Premio Nacional de Música". Weil loves to show his love of Austria at concerts, where he performs as a true ambassador of culture. Today, Weil is one of Venezuela’s most renowned musicians.

Austrian Embassy Caracas
Tel: (+58/212) 999 12 11
Fax: (+58/212) 993 27 53, 993 22 75