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Felix Weingartner

Felix Weingartner

Felix Weingartner


(Paul) Felix (von) Weingartner, Edler von Münzberg[1] (June 2, 1863 – May 7, 1942) was an Austrian conductor, composer and pianist. Weingartner was born in Zara, Dalmatia, today's Zadar, Croatia, to Austrian parents, and the family moved to Graz in 1868. His father died that same year. He studied with Wilhelm Mayer (who used the pseudonum of W. A. Rémy and also taught Ferruccio Busoni) and in 1881 went to Leipzig to study philosophy, but soon devoted himself entirely to music Read more on Last.fm
(Paul) Felix (von) Weingartner, Edler von Münzberg[1] (June 2, 1863 – May 7, 1942) was an Austrian conductor, composer and pianist. Weingartner was born in Zara, Dalmatia, today's Zadar, Croatia, to Austrian parents, and the family moved to Graz in 1868. His father died that same year. He studied with Wilhelm Mayer (who used the pseudonum of W. A.

Rémy and also taught Ferruccio Busoni) and in 1881 went to Leipzig to study philosophy, but soon devoted himself entirely to music, entering the Conservatory in 1883 and also studying under Franz Liszt in Weimar: he was among Liszt's later pupils. Liszt helped produce Weingartner's opera Sakuntala for its world premiere in 1884 with the Weimar orchestra. According to the Liszt biographer Alan Walker, the Weimar orchestra of the 1880s was far from its peak of a few decades earlier—and the opera performance ended with orchestra going one way and chorus another. Walker sources this to Weingartner's autobiography, published in Zürich and Leipzig in 1928-1929.

The same year, 1884, he became the director of the Königsberg Opera. From 1885-1887 he was Kapellmeister in Danzig, then until 1889 in Hamburg, and until 1891 in Mannheim. From 1891 he was Kapellmeister of the Royal Opera and conductor of symphony concerts in Berlin; he resigned from the Opera, though continuing to conduct the Symphony concerts, and settled in Munich, where he incurred the enmity of Rudolf Louis and Ludwig Thuille. In 1902, at the Festival of Mainz, Weingartner conducted the complete symphonies of Beethoven. From 1908 to 1911 he was the principal conductor of the Vienna Hofoper succeeding Gustav Mahler; he retained the conductorship of the Vienna Philharmonic until 1927.

From 1912 he was again Kapellmeister in Hamburg, but resigned in 1914 and went to Darmstadt as general music director. In 1919-20 he was conductor of the Vienna Volksoper. In 1920 he was Professor of the Franz Liszt Academy in Budapest. From 1927 to 1934 he was music director of the Sinfonieorchester Basel.

He gave his last concert in London in 1940 and died in Winterthur, Switzerland two years later. As a conductor Weingartner recorded perhaps the first complete cycle of Beethoven symphonies. In 1935 he conducted the world premiere of Georges Bizet's Symphony in C. Among his students as a conductor were Paul Sacher, Georg Tintner and Josef Krips. Weingartner was married four times, to Marie Juillerat (in 1891), Baroness Feodora von Dreifus (1903), the mezzo-soprano Lucille Marcel (1912; she died in 1921) and the actress Roxo Betty Kalisch (1922). Despite his lifelong career as a conductor Weingartner regarded himself as equally if not more importantly a composer. Besides numerous other operas, Weingartner wrote seven symphonies which are being recorded, with his other orchestral music, by cpo - classic production osnabrück, Osnabrück, Germany, a sinfonietta, violin concerto, cello concerto, orchestral works, at least four string quartets, quintets for strings and for piano with clarinet and other pieces including a great many lieder for voice and piano, one of which, "Liebesfeier" (text: Lenau) achieved a status as his most famous short work, in effect a "hit". Weingartner's choice of verse for his songs mirrors that of his contemporary composers: Max Reger, Joseph Marx, Richard Trunk and Richard Strauss. His musical style, notably very generous, indeed rather valuable in its melodic interest, is of its time: an amalgam of late Romanticism and early Modernism, comparable with those of his contemporaries Richard Strauss, Mahler, Franz Schreker and Alexander Zemlinsky.

His idiom left some marks on Erich Wolfgang Korngold, whose precocious Sinfonietta is dedicated to Weingartner, who conducted its first performance. His Third Symphony was intended both as a message of love to Lucille Marcel and a reply to the many critical attacks on him in Vienna; the finale reaches a climax in a parody of the waltz from Johann Strauss II's Die Fledermaus. Similarly, he managed to finish his Fifth Symphony in time for Roxo Betty's birthday, a trend in romantic attachment which may attract at least passing notice, for he was thus a very dedicated bridegroom in his deployment of manuscript paper. Weingartner edited the complete works of Berlioz (he once called Berlioz the "creator of the modern orchestra") as well as the opera Joseph by Méhul, Oberon by Weber, and individual works of Christoph Gluck, Richard Wagner and others. He also made an orchestral version of Beethoven's Hammerklavier Sonata.

Before Brian Newbould's more recent work he reconstructed Schubert's Symphony in E major, D. 729 in a version that received some performances and recordings; he also arranged works by a number of early Romantic masters for orchestral performance. Weingartner was early interested in the occult, astrology, and Eastern mysticism, which influenced his personal philosophy and his music to some extent. He was himself a prolific writer who published a poetical drama, Golgotha in 1908. He wrote copiously on music drama, on conducting, on the symphony since Beethoven, on the symphonies of Beethoven, Schubert and Schumann as well as on art and esoteric subjects.

Two collections of essays were Musikalische Walpurgisnacht (1907) and Akkorde (1912). He also published an autobiography, Lebenserinnerungen in 1923. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..

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