Wetzler, Hermann (Hans)

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Wetzler, Hermann (Hans)

Wetzler, Hermann (Hans), American organist, conductor, and composer; b. Frankfurt am Main (of American parents), Sept. 8,1870; d. N.Y., May 29,1943. He was taken to the U.S. as a child but in 1882 returned to Germany, where he studied at the Hoch Cons, in Frankfurt am Main and studied with Clara Schumann (piano), Iwan Knorr (counterpoint), and Humperdinck (instrumentation). In 1892 he went to N.Y., where he was organist at Old Trinity Church (1897-1901); in 1903 he established the Wetzler Sym. Concerts, which had considerable success; Richard Strauss conducted a series of 4 concerts of his own works with the Wetzler group (Feb.-March, 1904), including the premiere of the Sinfonia domestica. In 1905 he returned to Germany and conducted in various German cities and throughout Europe. In 1940 he returned to the U.S. He publ. Wege zur Musik (Leipzig, 1938).


dramatic: Opera: Die baskische Venus (Leipzig, Nov. 18, 1928; the Symphonie Dance in the Basque Style was extracted from this score as a concert piece). Incidental Music To: Shakespeare’s As You Like It (1917). ORCH.: Symphonic Fantasy (1922); Visionen (1923); Assisi, legend (1924); Symphonie concertante for Violin and Orch. (1932). OTHER: Chamber music, including a String Quartet (1937); much vocal music, including a Magnificat for Soprano, Boy’s or Women’s Chorus, and Organ (1936), choruses, and songs.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire