Josef Starzer (b Vienna, 1726, d Vienna, 22 Apr. 1787) was a violinist in the orchestra of the Viennese Burgtheater. As an established composer of ballets, ca. 1759-60 he followed the Viennese choreographer Hilverding to St. Petersburg, where he became concertmaster and court composer. He eventually returned to Vienna (ca. 1768), where he continued to write ballets. Among the most successful of this period were Roger et Bradamante (1771), Adèle de Ponthieu (1773), and Gli Orazi e gli Curiazi (1774). He helped to found the Viennese Tonküinstler Sozietät in 1771 and was one of its “Seniores.” Much of Starzer’s music was performed at the society’s concerts; the first one opened with one of his symphonies. In addition to more than thirty ballets, he wrote a singspiel, Die drei Pächter; an oratorio; symphonies, concertos, string quartets and trios; and wind chamber music.