Aus der Ohe, Adele (1864–1937)

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Aus der Ohe, Adele (1864–1937)

German pianist who played Tchaikovsky's First Piano Concerto at Carnegie Hall with the composer himself conducting. Born in Hannover, Germany, on December 11, 1864; died in Berlin on December 7, 1937; a pupil of Franz Liszt.

As a child, Adele Aus der Ohe studied with Theodor Kullak (1818–1882). Starting at age 12, Aus der Ohe studied for seven years with Franz Liszt, and, in 1886, made her American debut in New York, performing Liszt's First Piano Concerto. American audiences idolized her, and she made 17 annual tours of the United States. The Boston Symphony Orchestra was particularly partial to her talents, and she played with this group on 51 occasions between 1887 and 1906. One of the highlights of Aus der Ohe's career was her performance of the Tchaikovsky First Piano Concerto at the Carnegie Hall inaugural concerts in 1891, with the composer Peter Ilyitch Tchaikovsky conducting. Tchaikovsky loved her performance; Aus der Ohe, however, refused to accept any applause for herself. Two years later, in October 1893, she appeared again as soloist in the same concerto with the composer conducting in St. Petersburg, Russia, a few days before his sudden death. A crippling illness forced Aus der Ohe to abandon her brilliant career in midstream. The German inflation of the early 1920s destroyed her life's savings, and in her final years she was only able to maintain a dignified level of life because of the generosity of an American foundation of music lovers.


Yoffe, Elkhonon. Tchaikovsky in America: The Composer's Visit in 1891. NY: Oxford University Press, 1986.

John Haag , Associate Professor of History, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia

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