Bergel, Erich, Romanian-born German conductor; b. Rosenau, June 1, 1930; d. Ruhpolding, May 3, 1998. He studied in Bucharest. In 1959 he was appointed conductor of the Cluj Phil., but was shortly afterward (May 9, 1959) arrested and incarcerated on charges of subversive activities. After his release from prison on Oct. 4, 1962, he was engaged as a trumpet player by the Cluj Phil. In 1966 he became its conductor. In 1971 he left Romania and settled in West Germany. In 1975 he made his U.S. debut as guest conductor with the Houston Sym. Orch., serving as its principal guest conductor from 1979 to 1981. He publ. a disquisition on Bach’s Art of the Fugue (Bonn, 1979; 1st vol.only).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire