A design from Hans Mersmann’s ‘Modern Music’

While moving material from one bookshelf to another in the study of my flat in Vienna, I stumbled on a copy of Hans Mersmann’s ‘Modern Music’ from 1928. Mersmann was one of the… Continue reading

Egon Wellesz and the Mengelbergs – a rescinded dedication

Bruno Walter would conduct Egon Wellesz’s cycle of symphonic poems based on Shakespeare’s ‘Tempest’ in Amsterdam on the very day that Hitler marched into Vienna. A return was unthinkable for Egon Wellesz or… Continue reading

Egon Wellesz on the Amsterdam Concertgebouw’s 1920 Mahler Festival

In May 1920, the first ever Mahler festival was held in Amsterdam under the conductor Willem Mengelberg. The Viennese composer Egon Wellesz wrote a detailed report on the events in two separate articles… Continue reading

From Tablet Magazine: “Why the New ‘Holocaust Music’ Is an Insult to Music—and to Victims of the Shoah”

for those wishing to read the article by James Loeffler…

The modern music festivals of the ’20s and ’30s

 The new-music festivals of the 1920s and early ‘30s must have been something totally different from what we know today. They probably settled somewhere between Glastonbury and Darmstadt. Post-1919 developments simply piled up… Continue reading

“Komm herab, oh Madonna Theresa”

Adding to the ‘Heliane’ vs. ‘Jonny’ conflict is an ad with someone singing a popular song of the day ‘Komm herab, oh Madonna Theresa’ (‘Come down, oh Madonna Theresa’ sung by Joseph Schmidt:… Continue reading

Gramophone reviews Forbidden music

Forbidden Music The Jewish Composers Banned by the Nazis Michael Haas Yale UP London. published price £25, ISBN: 9780300154306, 352 pp., hardback. Gramophone, July 2013 by Rob Cowan “My parents were deported from… Continue reading

Norman Lebrecht reviews Forbidden Music

Norman Lebrecht has written a fascinating treatment (full article can be found below) of ‘Forbidden Music’ in the context of Decca’s recording series ‘Entartete Musik’ for the Wall Street Journal. I suppose I could… Continue reading

Conducting styles: Bruno Walter’s recordings of “Das Lied von der Erde”

The archive of the Music University in Vienna houses part of the Bruno Walter estate. Earlier this year, I was asked to give a talk, to be published (only in German at this… Continue reading

Hans Gál on BBC Radio 3

BBC’s Radio 3 has been more than generous about ‘Forbidden Music’. First Rob Cowan mentioned it three Sundays ago in his Sunday breakfast programme, then last Sunday he raised the subject of the… Continue reading