Rellstab, (Heinrich Friedrich) Ludwig

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Rellstab, (Heinrich Friedrich) Ludwig

Rellstab, (Heinrich Friedrich) Ludwig , German poet, novelist, and writer on music, son of Johann Carl Friedrich Rellstab; b. Berlin, April 13, 1799; d. there, Nov. 27, 1860. He revealed a precocious talent as a keyboard player in childhood, and later received keyboard instruction from L. Berger and training in theory from B. Klein (1816). He was an artillery officer and a teacher of mathematics and history in the Brigade School in Berlin. He retired from the army in 1821, and from 1823 lived as a writer in Berlin; was ed. and music critic of the Vossische Zeitung (1826–48). He publ. the satirical pamphlets Henriette, oder Die schÖne Sängerin, Eine Geschichte unserer Tage von Freimund Zuschauer (Leipzig, 1826; on Henriette Sontag’s triumphs) and über mein Verhältniss als Critiker zu Herrn Spontini als Componisten und General-Musikdirector in Berlin, nebst einem vergnüglichen Anhang (Leipzig, 1827; directed against Spohr’s truckling to virtuosity in Agnes von Hohenstauferi), for each of which he suffered a period of imprisonment, though his opinions were eventually upheld in official circles and by the public. Between 1830 and 1841 he ed. the musical periodical Iris im Gebiete der Tonkunst; he also contributed to several other periodicals. His Gesammelte Schriften (12 vols., Leipzig, 1843–44; new ed., 24 vols., 1860–61) includes reviews of opera and concerts which came out in the Vossische Zeitung between 1826 and 1848. He wrote an autobiography, Aus meinem Leben (2 vols., Berlin, 1861).


L. Blengert, L. R. (Leipzig, 1918); W. Franke, Der Theaterkritiker L. R. (Berlin, 1964).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire