Winter, Peter (von)

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Winter, Peter (von)

Winter, Peter (von), German composer; b. Mannheim (baptized), Aug. 28,1754; d. Munich, Oct. 17,1825. He was a violinist in the Electoral orch. at the age of 10, and was given permanent employment there in 1776. He studied with Abbé Vogler, then went with the court to Munich in 1778 and became director of the Court Orch.; in 1787 he was named court Vice-Kapellmeister and in 1798 court Kapellmeister. In 1814 he received a title of nobility from the court for his long service. In Munich he brought out a number of operas, of which the most important were Helena und Paris (Feb. 5,1782), Der Bettelstudent oder Das Donnerwetter (Feb. 2, 1785), Der Sturm (1798), Marie von Montalban (Jan. 28, 1800), and Colmai (Sept. 15, 1809). Frequent leaves of absence from Munich enabled him to travel; in Venice he produced his operas Catone in litica (1791), I sacrifizi di Creta ossia Arianna e Teseo (Feb. 13, 1792), I Fratelli rivali (Nov. 1793), and Belisa ossia La fedelità riconosciuta (Feb. 5, 1794). In Prague he produced the opera Ogus ossia II trionfo del bel sesso (1795). In Vienna he brought out Das unterbrochene Opferfest (June 14, 1796; his most successful opera; produced all over Europe), Babylons Pyramiden (Oct. 25,1797), and Das Labirint oder Der Kampf mit den Elementen (June 12, 1798). In Paris he produced his only French opera, Tamerlan (Sept. 14, 1802), in London the Italian operas La grotta di Calipso (May 31, 1803), II trionfo delVamor fraterno (March 22, 1804), II ratto di Proserpina (May 3,1804), and Zaira (Jan. 29,1805), and in Milan Maometto II (Jan. 28, 1817), I due Valdomiri (Dec. 26, 1817), and Etelinda (March 23, 1818). He also wrote several ballets, oratorios and sacred cantatas for the Munich court chapel, 28 masses and a vast amount of other church music, 4 syms. (including the grand choral sym. Die Schlacht, 1814), overtures, Violin Concerto, Flute Concerto, Bassoon Concerto, 2 oboe concertos, other concerted works, and much chamber music, including 12 divertimentos for 2 Violins, Viola, and Cello and a Divertimento for 2 Violins, Viola, Cello, and 2 Horns, 6 string quartets, 3 quintets, 2 sextets, a Septet, an Octet, sonatas, etc. He publ. Vollständige Singschule (Mainz, 1825; 2nd ed., 1874).


J. Arnold, P. W. (Erfurt, 1810); W. Neumann, P. W. (Kassel, 1856); V. Frensdorf, P. W. als Opernkomponist (diss., Univ. of Munich, 1908); L. Kuckuk, P. W. als deutscher Opernkomponist (diss., Univ. of Heidelberg, 1923); E. Loeffler, P. W. als Kirchenmusiker (diss., Univ. of Frankfurt am Main, 1929); T. Gebhard, Studien zum Klarinettensatz und -stil in den konzertanten Werken von Georg-Friedrich Fuchs, P.v. W. und Franz Danzi (Hildesheim, 1998).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire