The Vienna Boys Choir is one of the most famous choirs in the world, and one of its oldest. In 1498, Emperor Maximilian I moved his court to Vienna to establish the Chapel Imperial there, along with the Vienna Boys Choir. Over the centuries, the court attracted musicians like Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Anton Bruckner. Joseph Haydn, Michael Haydn, and Franz Schubert were themselves choirboys.
Today the Vienna Boys Choir is a private, non-profit organization, which relies on sponsorship and donations. The Choir maintains a primary school, a junior and a senior high school. 300 boys and girls between the ages of six and 19 attend the Choir’s Schools in Vienna’s Augarten park. All receive individual voice lessons and sing in one of the choirs. The Choir’s education is open to all, regardless of their origin, nationality, or religion. About third of the students go on to become music professionals.