Richard Lert was born September 19, 1885, in Vienna, Austria. He trained as an orchestral conductor under Arthur Nikisch and began his career in Darmstadt, Germany, where he met and married his wife, Vicki Baum, in 1916. They had two sons. Lert held posts in Frankfurt, Kiel and Hannover before becoming the music director of the Berlin National Opera. Lert and his family moved to Los Angeles in 1932, where he became the music director of the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra. In addition to his work with the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra, Lert also conducted at the Hollywood Bowl. From 1957 on, he spent his summers at the American Symphony Orchestra League's training camps in Asilomar, California and Orkney Springs, Virginia. Lert passed away in Mountain View, California on April 25, 1980.