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Tony Berg. Image: Karen Steains.

Musica Viva Patron 

In July 2011 Tony Berg AM was appointed Patron of Musica Viva Australia.

The position of Patron is the highest non-governing position within Musica Viva, and recognises significant and sustained commitment and service to MVA. The Patron’s duties are two-fold:  to publicly promote the objectives, achievements and aspirations of Musica Viva, as well as offering informal behind the scenes counsel.  There has only been one previous Patron, Kenneth W Tribe AC, who passed away in July 2010.

A highly successful businessman, Tony is currently an Executive Director of Gresham Partners Limited, and has previously held the positions of Managing Director and CEO of Boral Limited and was Macquarie Bank’s first Managing Director and CEO in 1985 when Hill Samuel became Macquarie Bank.

Tony is a graduate of Sydney University with an honours degree in Economics, he received an MBA with High Distinction and Baker Scholar from the Harvard School of Management and in 2009 was awarded an honorary Doctorate in Business from the University of New South Wales.

His father, Charles Berg, introduced Tony to music and to Musica Viva at a very young age. Charles was a Jewish refugee from Germany who came to Australia just before the war. He joined as the first Secretary of Musica Viva in 1947 and later held many positions within the organisation, including President.

Some of Tony’s earliest musical memories are from his involvement with Musica Viva. “I remember being around 8 or 9 years old and going out to the airport with my father to welcome one of the visiting quartets, and I remember being very proud to carry the cello for the cellist of that quartet,” says Tony.

That early exposure led to a lifelong involvement with MVA. Tony was a Director of MVA from 1983 to 2000 and was Chairman for 12 years. Together with his wife, Carol, the Berg Family Foundation has also contributed significant philanthropic support to MVA, including seed funding for the recently established Musica Viva Festival, in which MVA brings together the best of Australia’s emerging musicians from the Australian Youth Orchestra and the most outstanding international mentor/performers for a week of masterclasses and public performances.