Kuhlau, (Daniel) Friedrich (Rudolph)

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Kuhlau, (Daniel) Friedrich (Rudolph)

Kuhlau, (Daniel) Friedrich (Rudolph), German-born Danish pianist and composer; b. Ülzen, near Hannover, Sept. 11, 1786; d. Copenhagen, March 12, 1832. He lost an eye in a childhood accident, and studied piano during his recovery; later studied theory and composition with C.F.G. Schwenke, Kantor of Hamburg’s Catherinenkirche. He went to Copenhagen in 1810 to avoid conscription into Napoleon’s army. He prospered there, being made court chamber musician (1813). He appeared often in concerts, championing the music of Beethoven. D. Fog ed. a thematic and bibliographic catalog (Copenhagen, 1977).


dramatic (all 1st perf. in Copenhagen): R0-verborgen (The Robber’s Castle), Singspiel (May 26, 1814); Trylleharpen (The Magic Harp), opera (Jan. 30, 1817); Elisa, opera (April 17, 1820); Lulu, opera (Oct. 29, 1824); William Shakespeare, drama (March 28, 1826); Hugo og Adelheid, opera (Oct. 29, 1827); Elverhej (The Fairies’ Mound), incidental music (Nov. 6, 1828); Trillingbredrene, fra Damask (The Triplet Brothers from Damascus), incidental music (Sept. 1, 1830).other: Piano Concerto (1810); Concertino for 2 Horns and Orch. (1821); numerous chamber music pieces with flute; keyboard works, including pieces for piano 2- and 4-Hands; songs; etc.


C. Thrane, E K.: Zur 100-jährigen Wiederkehr seines Geburtstages (Leipzig, 1886); K. Graupner, F. K. (Leipzig, 1930).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire