Arthur Nikisch

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Nikisch, Arthur

 

Born Oct. 12, 1855, in Lébényi Szant Miklos; died Jan. 23, 1922, in Leipzig. Hungarian conductor and teacher.

From 1866 to 1873, Nikisch studied at the Conservatory in Vienna. Between 1874 and 1877 he played violin in the Vienna court orchestra. In 1878 he became the assistant conductor of the Leipzig Opera. He was the opera’s principal conductor from to 1882 to 1889 and its director in 1905 and 1906. Nikisch conducted some of the world’s major orchestras, including the Boston Symphony (1889–93), the Leipzig Gewandhaus (1895–1922), and the Berlin Philharmonic (1895–1922). With the last orchestra he frequently toured Western European and American cities, as well as St. Petersburg and Moscow (for the first time in 1899). From 1893 to 1895 he was the principal conductor and director of the Budapest Opera; and in 1897 he conducted the symphonic orchestra in Hamburg. Between 1902 and 1907, Nikisch was head of the teaching section and the conducting course at the Leipzig Conservatory, where his pupils included the Soviet conductors K. S. Saradzhev and A. B. Khessin.

Nikisch, a major representative of the romantic tradition of conducting, was an inspired artist who, while outwardly restrained, possessed unusual power over the orchestra. He popularized the music of P. I. Tchaikovsky, which occupied a special place in his repertoire. He also performed works by German romantic composers and contemporary German composers, including A. Bruckner, G. Mahler, and R. Strauss. He wrote a number of musical compositions.

REFERENCES

Lipaev, I. V. Artur Nikish, dirizher orkestra. Moscow-Leipzig [1903].
Kuper, E. A. Pamiati Artura Nikisha. Petrograd, 1922.

G. IA. IUDIN

References in periodicals archive ?
The reader finds fascinating descriptions of Leichtentritt's hometown, Pleschen, and its inhabitants on the Polish-Russian frontier; the educational system of the old world; Harvard at the end of the nineteenth century, where Leichtentritt spent three years after his family emigrated to the United States; Boston and its musical life, including detailed accounts of concerts by such celebrities as Arthur Nikisch, Ferruccio Busoni, Ignace Jan Paderewski, and Eugen d'Albert, a concert life that the reader can compare to that of the Boston to which Leichtentritt returned in 1933, and to the European capitals Leichtentritt visited when his family moved back to Europe in 1894.
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He listened to recordings, read biographies and other books on conductors, and considered reviews of performances for his discussion, which begins with Wagner himself, then chronologically treats his pupils Hermann Levi, Felix Mottl, and Karl Muck, and Viennese, American, German, and Russian conductors Arthur Nikisch, Albert Coates, Gustav Mahler, Felix Weingartner, Bruno Walter, Arturo Toscanini, Artur Bodanzky, Wilhelm Furtwangler, Fritz Busch, Erich Kleiber, Hans Knappertsbusch, Clemens Krauss, Karl Bohm, Richard Strauss, Otto Klemperer, and Fritz Reiner.
In 1899 he won the Mendelssohn Prize, and in 1901 he became concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra under Arthur Nikisch.
Chairman of eIFL advisory board, Mr Jan Nikisch, said that this conference assembled a distinguished array of experts in the field of publishing and disseminating scholarly publications.
They were lucky to haveHans Richter and Arthur Nikisch during their first 10 years,but thereafter there were ups and downs.
Three of the last century's greatest conductors - Arthur Nikisch, Wilhelm Furtwangler and Herbert von Karajan - secured their reputations with the ensemble, which has been instrumental in preserving and polishing the musical legacy we call the standard repertory.
The legendary Arthur Schnabel championed his piano music; Arthur Nikisch, Bruno Walter and Otto Klemperer conducted his orchestral music and stage works; and leading international signers such as Maria Jeritza, Lotte Lehmann and Elisabeth Schumann vied with each other for starring roles in his operas.
Butterworth had intended to conduct the premiere, but seems to have gotten cold feet and left it in the hands of Arthur Nikisch, who made a formidable impression on the composer.
He notes also that, though lacking the visual memory of a Toscanini or Karajan, and the improvisatory skills of a Furtwangler or Nikisch, he was an architectural conductor, who constructed a performance from carerial study of details and their assemblage toward a grand design; that, in short, he could "make any orchestra, good or bad, perform to the best of its abilities.
On 13 December 1895, following a performance by Carreno, Grieg wrote a letter to his friend August Winding in which he analyzed her performance of Chopin's Piano Concerto in E Minor and Liszt's Hungarian Fantasy with orchestra, conducted by Arthur Nikisch (1855-1922) at the Gewandhaus in Leipzig.