Hegar, Friedrich, Swiss conductor, pedagogue, and composer; b. Basel, Oct. 11, 1841; d. Zürich, June 2, 1927. He studied in Basel and then with Hauptmann, Richter, David, Rietz, and Plaidy at the Leipzig Cons. (1857–59). After playing violin in the Gewandhaus Orch. in Leipzig, he joined the Bilse orch. in Warsaw in 1860. In 1861 he became conductor of the choir and orch. in Gebweiler, Alsace. In 1862 he settled in Zürich, where he was concertmaster (until 1865) and conductor (1865–1906) of the Tonhalle Orch. From 1864 to 1901 he conducted the Choral Soc, and also led other choral groups. In 1876 he helped to found the Music School (later Cons.), and served as its director until 1914. Hegar was best known as a composer of choral music, his most successful score being the oratorio Manasse for Men’s Voices (Zürich, Oct. 25, 1885; rev. version for Soloists, Chorus, and Orch., Zürich, Jan. 10, 1888). Among his other works were a Festival Overture (1895), Cello Concerto (1919), Ballade for Violin and Orch. (1922), chamber music, and songs.
A. Steiner, F. H.: Sein Leben und Wirken (Zürich, 1928); W. Jerg, H.: Ein Meister des Männerchorliedes (Lachen, 1946); F. Müller, F. H: Sein Leben und Wirken in Briefen (Zürich, 1987).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire