b. Berlin (Germany), Jan. 25, 1886, d. Baden-Baden (Germany), Nov. 30, 1954, conductor. From 1919-1924 conducted the autumn concerts of the Tonkuenstler Orchestra of Vienna and worked with H. Schenker from 1920-1935; 1921 concert manager of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien; 1922 first concert with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, became their leading conductor in 1927; also head conductor at the Vienna State Opera from 1928 and conducted many concerts and performances at the Salzburg Festival. In 1938, after the annexation of Austria by Nazi Germany, was appointed Director of Music in Vienna and took over the direction of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra in 1939 until 1945. After 1947 worked again in Vienna and Salzburg and was, for example, artistic director of the Salzburg festival from 1952.
Works#Ton und Wort. Aufsaetze und Vortraege 1918-54, 1954; Vermaechtnis. Nachgelassene Schriften, 1956; Briefe, ed. by F. Thiess, 1964; Aufzeichnungen 1924-1954, ed. by E. Furtwaengler, 1980.
Literature#S. H. Shirakawa, The Devil´s Music Master, 1992; B. Geissmar, Taktstock & Schaftstiefel. Erinnerungen an W. F., 1996; C. Walton, W. F. in Diskussion, 1996; NDB.