Franz Konwitschny


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Konwitschny, Franz

 

Born Aug. 14, 1901, in Fulnek, North Moravia; died July 28, 1962, in Belgrade. German conductor (German Democratic Republic). Professor (from 1951).

Konwitschny received his musical education in Brno (1921–23) and Leipzig (1923–25). He taught at the National Conservatory in Vienna (1925–27). He began his career as a conductor at the State Theater in Stuttgart (1927) and then worked in Freiburg (Breisgau, Generalmusikdirektor from 1933), Frankfurt am Main (from 1938), and Hanover (opera and concert conductor from 1945). From 1949 to 1962 he was the conductor of the Gewandhaus symphony orchestra in Leipzig and simultaneously conducted in the opera theater in Dresden (1953–55) and the Berlin State Opera (from 1955). He won the national prize of the GDR (1951, 1956, 1960).

Konwitschny’s name is closely linked with the development of musical culture in the GDR. In addtion to performing vivid and faithful interpretations of the works of J. S. Bach, A. Bruckner, J. Brahms, and M. Reger, Konwitschny worked hard to bring the works of composers of the GDR to the attention of the public. Konwitschny made many concert tours in the USSR (the first one in 1954), including tours with the Gewandhaus orchestra.

E. IA. RATSER