The Austrian Mint has launched new 2020-dated New Year’s collector’s coins with the theme of celebrating the 150th anniversary of the opening of Vienna’s legendary Musikverein concert hall in 1870. In keeping with the anniversary, the 2020 New Year’s coin features the Greek god, Apollo. The image of the god of music and dance is taken from a frieze, designed by August Eisenmenger (1830-1907), found on the ceiling of the Golden Hall of the Musikverein. New Year’s celebrations in Austria are traditionally all about music.
Considered one of the finest concert halls in the world, the Musikverein was designed by the Danish architect Theophil Hansen (1813–1891) in the Neoclassical style of an ancient Greek temple. The building was inaugurated on the 6th January 1870, when the first night’s audience was captivated by the combination of its architectural and acoustic beauty. However, the legendary sound of the Golden Hall is actually the product of fortuitous coincidence, as Hansen had to rely only on his intuition rather than on studies of architectural acoustics. Fortunately, the magnificent architecture resulted in sublime but commanding sound unique only to the Musikverein.
In Eisenmenger’s frieze, the youthful Apollo floats above the audience. The coin’s design is the work of Austrian Mint artisans Helmut Andexlinger and Herbert Wähner. The motif is based on this exquisite mural which shows him, lyre in hand, with a toga covering his lower body. In the background, the famous organ of the Golden Hall can be seen. The conjoined, stylised numerals 2020 is placed just to the lower left of the primary design.
The reverse design includes all crests of the nine federated states comprising the Republic of Austria. A bold numeral 5 is centred, denoting the coin’s value in euros.
|8.9 g||28.5 mm||Uncirculated||
|7.7 g||28.5 mm||Select Brilliant Unc.||
Each of the silver coins is vacuum-sealed in a colourful and informative blister pack. An additional 200,000 of these five-euro coins will be issued in copper Uncirculated quality and are available for their face value at commercial banks and post offices. For additional information about these coins and others available from the Austrian Mint, please visit their website.