Köhler, Louis, German pianist, pedagogue, and composer; b. Braunschweig, Sept. 5, 1820; d. Königsberg, Feb. 16, 1886. He studied piano in Braunschweig with Sonnemann, then took courses in composition in Vienna (1839–43) with Sechter and Seyfried; also studied piano there with Bocklet. He settled in Königsberg (1847), where he established a successful piano school. In 1880 he was granted the title Royal Prof. He wrote 3 operas, a ballet, a Sym., overtures, cantatas, and other works, but is best remembered for his albums of piano studies, which were adopted in music schools all over the world; next to Czerny’s, they were the most popular didactic piano works of their time. It must be observed that while his studies are of great instructive value, they are also worthwhile from a purely musical standpoint. His major work, in which he laid the foundation of methodical piano pedagogy, is Systematische Lehrmethode für Klavierspiel und Musik: I, Die Mechanik als Grundlage der Technik (1856; 3rd ed., rev. by Riemann, 1888), and II, Tonschriftwesen, Harmonik, Metrik (1858).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire