Joseph Joachim

Joseph Joachim (Hungarian: Joachim József, 28 June 1831 – 15 August 1907) was a Hungarian violinist, conductor, composer and teacher. A close collaborator of Johannes Brahms, he is widely regarded as one of the most significant violinists of the 19th century.

Joseph Joachim (photo by Reutlinger)
Joseph Joachim
Joseph Joachim's signature



Birthplace of Joseph Joachim (Kittsee)
Joseph Joachim's birth house in Kittsee

Joseph Joachim was born in Köpcsény, Moson County, Kingdom of Hungary (present-day Kittsee in Burgenland, Austria). He was the seventh of eight children born to Julius, a wool merchant, and Fanny Joachim, who were of Hungarian Jewish origin.[1] His infancy was spent as a member of the Kittsee Kehilla (Jewish community), one of Hungary's prominent Siebengemeinden ('Seven Communities') under the protectorate of the Esterházy family. He was a first cousin of Fanny Wittgenstein, née Figdor, the mother of Karl Wittgenstein and the grandmother of the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein and the pianist Paul Wittgenstein.[2]

Early career

In 1833 his family moved to Pest, which in 1873 was united with Buda and Óbuda to form Budapest. There from 1836 (age 5) he studied violin with the Polish violinist Stanisław Serwaczyński, the concertmaster of the opera in Pest, said to be the best violinist in Pest.[1] Although Joachim's parents were "not particularly well off", they had been well advised to choose not just an "ordinary" violin teacher.[3] Joachim's first public performance was 17 March 1839 when he was of age 7.[4] (Serwaczyński later moved back to Lublin, Poland, where he taught Wieniawski.) In 1839, Joachim continued his studies at the Vienna Conservatory (briefly with Miska Hauser and Georg Hellmesberger, Sr.;[5] finally – and most significantly – with Joseph Böhm,[6] who introduced him to the world of chamber music).[7][8] In 1843 he was taken by his cousin, Fanny Figdor, who later married "a Leipzig merchant"[9] named Wittgenstein, to live and study in Leipzig.[10] In the journal Neue Zeitschrift fůr Musik Robert Schumann was highly enthusiastic about Felix Mendelssohn, on which Moser writes "Only in Haydn's admiration for Mozart does the history of music know a parallel case of such ungrudging veneration of one great artist for his equal."[11] in 1835, Mendelssohn had become director of the Leipzig Gewandhaus orchestra. In 1843 Joachim became a protégé of Mendelssohn, who arranged for him to study theory and composition with Moritz Hauptmann at the Leipzig Conservatory.[12] In his début performance in the Gewandhaus Joachim played the Otello Fantasy by Heinrich Wilhelm Ernst.

London Philharmonic Debut, Beethoven Violin Concerto

On 27 May 1844 Joachim, at the age not quite 13, in his London debut with Mendelssohn conducting at a concert of the Philharmonic Society, played the solo part in Beethoven's violin concerto. This was a triumph in several respects, as described by R. W. Eshbach.[13] The Philharmonic had a policy against performers so young, but an exception was made after auditions persuaded gatherings of distinguished musicians and music lovers that Joachim had mature capabilities. Despite Beethoven's recognition as one of the greatest composers, and the ranking nowadays of his violin concerto as among the greatest few, it was far from being so ranked before Joachim's performance. Ludwig Spohr had harshly criticized it, and after the London premiere by violinist Edward Eliason, a critic had said it "might have been written by any third or fourth rate composer." But Joachim was very well prepared to play Beethoven's concerto, having written his own cadenzas for it and memorized the piece. The audience anticipated great things, having got word from the rehearsal,[14] and so, Mendelssohn wrote, "frenetic applause began" as soon as Joachim stepped in front of the orchestra. The beginning was applauded still more, and "cheers of the audience accompanied every ... part of the concerto." Reviewers also had high praise. One for 'The Musical World' wrote "The greatest violinists hold this concerto in awe ... Young Joachim ... attacked it with the vigour and determination of the most accomplished artist ... no master could have read it better," and the two cadenzas, written by Joachim, were "tremendous feats ... ingeniously composed". Another reviewer, for the 'Illustrated London News', wrote that Joachim "is perhaps the first violin player, not only of his age, but of his siècle" [century]. "He performed Beethoven's solitary concerto, which we have heard all the great performers of the last twenty years attempt, and invariably fail in ... its performance was an eloquent vindication of the master-spirit who imagined it." A third reviewer, for the 'Morning Post', wrote that the concerto "has been generally regarded by violin-players as not a proper and effective development of the powers of their instrument" but that Joachim's performance "is beyond all praise, and defies all description" and "was altogether unprecedented." Joachim remained a favorite with the English public for the rest of his career. He visited England in each year 1858, 1859, 1862, and for several decades thereafter.[15]

Beethoven string quartets

Moser (p. 28 ff.) writes "After the appearance of the six String Quartets (Op. 18) Beethoven had complete command of the field of chamber-music", although in the later quartets he "makes many exacting demands" of string players. Moser (p. 29) further writes that "at the time of Beethoven's death", such people as Spohr and Hauptmann did not necessarily esteem the late quartets above the earliest ones. Moser, p. 30 writes that in Vienna "the public showed a marked hostility toward" the late quartets. But Joachim's teacher Bohm had an appreciation of the late quartets, which he communicated to Joachim.[16] At the age of 18, "in the whole of Germany" Joachim had no equal, either in the rendering of Bach or in the concertos of Beethoven and Mendelssohn; while as quartet player, "he had no cause to fear rivalry."[17]


Following Mendelssohn's death in 1847, Joachim stayed briefly in Leipzig, teaching at the Conservatorium and playing on the first desk of the Gewandhaus Orchestra with Ferdinand David,[18] whom Mendelssohn had appointed as concertmaster on taking up the conductorship in 1835.

Weimar, Liszt; then Hanover

In 1848, the pianist and composer Franz Liszt took up residence in Weimar, where Goethe and Schiller had lived.[19] Liszt was determined to re-establish the town's reputation as the Athens of Germany. There, he gathered a circle of young avant-garde disciples, vocally opposed to the conservatism of the Leipzig circle. Joachim was amongst the first of these. He served Liszt as concertmaster, and for several years enthusiastically embraced the new "psychological music," as he called it. In 1852 he moved to Hanover, at the same time dissociating himself from the musical ideals of the 'New German School' (Liszt, Richard Wagner, Hector Berlioz, and their followers, as defined by journalist Franz Brendel). "The worship of Wagner's music permeating musical taste in Weimar was to Joachim inordinate and unacceptable."[20] Joachim's break with Liszt became final in August 1857, when he wrote to his former mentor: "I am completely out of sympathy with your music; it contradicts everything which from early youth I have taken as mental nourishment from the spirit of our great masters."[21] Hanover "was then an independent kingdom, later to be absorbed in the German empire."[22] King Georg of Hanover was totally blind and very fond of music; he paid Joachim a good salary and gave him considerable freedom.[23] Joachim's duties in Hanover included playing the main violin part in opera performances and that or conducting state concerts.[24] He had five summer months off, in which he made concert tours around Europe.[25] In March 1853 he sent to Liszt a copy of the Overture to Hamlet he had recently composed.[26]

The Schumanns, Brahms; Berlin

Joseph Joachim, 1904
Joseph Joachim, John Singer Sargent, 1904

Also in 1853, a committee headed by Schumann invited Joachim to the Lower Rhine Music Festival.[27] At the Festival, Joachim again soloed in the Beethoven violin concerto.[28] His success made him, it is said, "the most renowned artist of Germany".[27] Robert Schumann and his wife Clara were deeply impressed, and formed a "close connection" with Joachim.[29] Joachim met the then publicly unknown 20-year-old Brahms, and wrote of him that his playing "shows the intense fire...which predicts the artist" and "his compositions already betoken such power as I have seen in no other musician of his age".[30] Joachim strongly recommended Brahms to Robert.[31] Brahms was received by the Schumanns with great enthusiasm. After Robert's mental breakdown in 1854 and death in 1856, Joachim, Clara, and Brahms remained lifelong friends and shared musical views. Joachim's performing style with the violin, like Clara's at the piano, is said to have been "restrained, pure, antivirtuosic, expressing the music rather than the performer."[32]

In December 1854, Joachim visited Robert at the Endenich asylum where he had been since February, Joachim being his first visitor.[33] Early on, Brahms already played and composed for the piano, which "he had mastered in a supreme fashion", but he felt deficient in orchestration.[34] In 1854 he began composing what was to become his first piano concerto, his first orchestral piece. He sent a score of the first movement to Joachim, requesting his advice.[35] After getting Joachim's response, Brahms wrote to him "A thousand thanks for having studied the first movement in such a sympathetic and careful manner. I have learned a great deal from your remarks. As a musician I really have no greater wish than to have more talent so that I can learn still more from such a friend."[36] Later in the composition of the concerto, which took four years, Brahms wrote to Joachim "I am sending you the rondo once more. And just like the last time, I beg for some really severe criticism."[37] The final manuscript of the concerto "shows many alterations in the handwriting of Joachim".[38]

Joseph Joachim e Amalie Weiss
Joseph and Amalie Joachim

Joachim's time in Hanover was his most prolific period of composition. Then and during the rest of his career, he frequently performed with Clara Schumann. For example, in October–November 1857 they took a recital tour together to Dresden, Leipzig, and Munich.[39] St. James's Hall, London, which opened in 1858, hosted a series of "Popular Concerts" of chamber music, of which programmes from 1867 through 1904 are preserved.[40] Joachim appears a great many times. He visited London each year from 1866 on.[41] In March 1898 and in 1901–1904 Joachim appeared in his own quartet of players, but otherwise far more often he appeared with resident Popular Concerts artists Louis Ries,[42] second violin, J. B. Zerbini,[43] first viola, and Alfredo Piatti, first cello, reputed to be "one of the most celebrated cellists" of the time. George Bernard Shaw wrote that the Popular Concerts had helped greatly to spread and enlighten musical taste in England.[44] Joachim had been a mainstay of the chamber music Popular Concerts.

At 18 of the Popular Concerts at least, Clara Schumann performed along with Joachim, Zerbini and Piatti, presumably playing piano quartets (without second violin), or sometimes piano trios (for piano, violin, and cello). (The programs of those concerts very likely also included string quartets in which she of course did not play, as Ries is also listed.) A favorite piece of Clara's was Brahms's Piano Quartet in A major. She wrote to Brahms 27 February 1882 from London that the piece had received "much applause".[45] About a performance of it in Liverpool 11 February she had written in her diary that it was "warmly received, much to my surprise as the public here is far less receptive than that in London."[46] In January 1867 there had been a tour to Edinburgh and Glasgow, Scotland, by Joachim, Clara, her oldest daughter Marie, Ries, Zerbini, Piatti, two English sisters "Miss Pyne," one a singer, and a Mr. Saunders who managed all the arrangements. Marie Schumann wrote home from Manchester that in Edinburgh Clara "was received with tempestuous applause and had to give an encore, so had Joachim. Piatti, too, is always tremendously liked."[47]

Joachim had extensive correspondence with both Clara and Brahms, as Brahms greatly valued Joachim's opinion of his new compositions. In 1860 Brahms and Joachim jointly wrote a manifesto against the "progressive" music of the 'New German' School, in reaction to the polemics of Brendel's Neue Zeitschrift für Musik. This manifesto, a volley in the War of the Romantics, had originally few (four[12]) signers (more later) and met with a mixed reception, being heavily derided by followers of Wagner.[48]

Joachim Quartett
The famous Joachim Quartet. From left to right: Robert Hausmann (cello), Josef Joachim (1st violin), Emanuel Wirth (viola) and Karel Halíř (2nd violin)

On 10 May 1863 Joachim married the contralto Amalie Schneeweiss (stage name: Amalie Weiss) (1839–99). Amalie gave up her own promising career as an opera singer and gave birth to six children. She continued to perform in oratorios and to give lieder recitals. In 1865 Joachim quit the service of the King of Hanover in protest, when the Intendant (artistic director) of the Opera refused to advance one of the orchestral players (Jakob Grün) because of the latter's Jewish birth.[49] In 1866, as a result of the Austro-Prussian war, in which Prussia and its capital Berlin became the dominant German state and city, Joachim moved to Berlin, where he was invited to help found, and to become the first director of, a new department of the Royal Academy of Music, concerned with musical performance and called the Hochschule für ausübende Tonkunst.

On Good Friday, 10 April 1868, Joachim and his wife joined their friend, Johannes Brahms, in the celebration of one of Brahms' greatest triumphs, the first complete performance of his German Requiem at the Bremen Cathedral. Amalie Joachim sang "I Know that My Redeemer Liveth" and Joseph Joachim played Robert Schumann's Abendlied. It was a glorious occasion, after which about 100 of the composer's friends, the Joachims, Clara Schumann, Albert Dietrich and his wife, Max Bruch and others gathered at the Bremen Rathskeller.

Joseph Joachim Quartet
The Joachim Quartet performing in the Sing-Akademie zu Berlin—an engraving based on a painting (currently lost) by Felix Possart, published as a Beilage to the Zeitschrift der Internationalen Musikgesellschaft 4/5 (1903), between pp. 240 and 241.

In 1869, the Joachim String Quartet was formed, which quickly gained a reputation as Europe's finest. It continued to perform until Joachim's death in 1907. Other members of the Quartet were, Karel Halíř (2nd violin) from 1897 on; Emanuel Wirth (viola) from 1877 on; and Robert Hausmann (cello), from 1879 on.[50] In 1878 while writing his violin concerto, Brahms consulted Joachim, who "freely gave him encouragement and technical advice".[51] Brahms asked Joachim to write the cadenza for the concerto, as he did.

In 1884, Joachim and his wife separated after he became convinced that she was having an affair with the publisher Fritz Simrock. Brahms, certain that Joachim's suspicions were groundless, wrote a sympathetic letter to Amalie, which she later produced as evidence in Joachim's divorce proceeding against her.[52] This led to a cooling of Brahms' and Joachim's friendship, which was not restored until some years later, when Brahms composed the Double Concerto in A minor for violin and cello, Op. 102, 1887, as a peace offering to his old friend. It was co-dedicated to the first performers, Joachim and Robert Hausmann.

In late 1895 both Brahms and Joachim were present at the opening of the new Tonhalle at Zürich, Switzerland; Brahms conducted and Joachim was assistant conductor. But in April, two years later, Joachim was to lose forever this revered friend, as Johannes Brahms died at the age of 64 at Vienna. At Meiningen, in December 1899, it was Joachim who made the speech when a statue to Brahms was unveiled.

Honors and Jubilees

In March 1877, Joachim received an honorary Doctorate of Music from Cambridge University. For the occasion he presented his Overture in honor of Kleist, Op. 13.[53] Near the 50th anniversary of Joachim's debut recital, he was honored by "friends and admirers in England"[54] on 16 April 1889 who presented him with "an exceptionally fine" violin made in 1715 by Antonio Stradivari, called "Il Cremonese".[55] About ten years later, for the sixtieth jubilee, a concert in honor of Joachim was given by his former students of violin and viola playing and cellists who had studied quartet playing with him, on 22 April 1899.[56] The total of some 140 string players was impressive, as were their instruments (made by Stradivari, Guarneri, Bergonzi, Amati, etc.).[57] An honor such as that concert "had been accorded to no other musician during his lifetime".[56]

Joseph Joachim, by Philip Alexius de László, 1903
Joseph Joachim, by Philip Alexius de László, 1903

During 1899, Joachim was invited to become president of the newly established Oxford & Cambridge Musical Club in London. He remained club president until his death.[58]

In Berlin, on 17 August 1903, Joachim recorded five sides for The Gramophone & Typewriter Ltd (G&T), which remain a fascinating and valuable source of information about 19th-century styles of violin playing. He is the earliest violinist of distinction known to have recorded, only to be followed soon thereafter when Sarasate made some recordings the following year.

Joachim's portrait was twice painted by Philip de László. A portrait of Joachim was painted by John Singer Sargent[59] and presented to him at the 1904 "Diamond Jubilee" celebration of his sixtieth anniversary of his first appearance in London. Joachim remained in Berlin until his death in 1907.

At his 75th birthday observance in June 1906, Joachim said

The Germans have four violin concertos. The greatest, most uncompromising is Beethoven's. The one by Brahms vies with it in seriousness. The richest, the most seductive, was written by Max Bruch. But the most inward, the heart's jewel, is Mendelssohn's.[60]

Bruch wrote three violin concertos. Joachim was presumably referring to his Concerto No. 1. Joachim had assisted Bruch in revising that concerto.[60]


Joachim,Joseph u Amalie - Mutter Erde fec
Amalie's and Joseph's grave in Berlin-Charlottenburg

Among the most notable of Joachim's achievements were his revival of Beethoven's violin concerto already mentioned, the revival of Bach's Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin, BWV 1001–1006, especially the Chaconne from the Partita No. 2, BWV 1004,[61] and of Beethoven's late string quartets.[62] Joachim was the second violinist, after Ferdinand David, to play Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto in E minor, which he studied with the composer. Joachim played a pivotal role in the career of Brahms, and remained a tireless advocate of Brahms's compositions through all the vicissitudes of their friendship. He conducted the English premiere of Brahms's Symphony No. 1 in C minor at Cambridge on 8 March 1877, on the same day that he received a D. Mus. degree there (Brahms had declined an invitation to go to England himself).[63]

A number of Joachim's composer colleagues, including Schumann, Brahms, Bruch, and Dvořák, composed concerti with Joachim in mind, many of which entered the standard repertory. Nevertheless, Joachim's solo repertoire remained relatively restricted. He never performed Schumann's Violin Concerto in D minor, which Schumann wrote especially for him, or Dvořák's Violin Concerto in A minor, although Dvořák had earnestly solicited his advice about the piece, dedicated it to him, and would have liked him to premiere it. The most unusual work written for Joachim was the F-A-E Sonata, a collaboration between Schumann, Brahms, and Albert Dietrich, based upon the initials of Joachim's motto, Frei aber Einsam (which can be translated as "free but lonely", "free but alone", or "free but solitary"). Although the sonata is rarely performed in its entirety, the third movement, the Scherzo in C minor, composed by Brahms, is still frequently played today.


Joachim's own compositions are less well known. He gave opus numbers to 14 compositions and composed about an equal number of pieces without opus numbers. Among his compositions are various works for the violin (including three concerti) and overtures to Shakespeare's Hamlet and Henry IV. He also wrote cadenzas for a number of other composers' concerti (including the Beethoven and Brahms concerti). His most highly regarded composition is his Hungarian concerto (Violin Concerto No 2 in D minor, Op. 11).

Joseph Joachim (photo by Julius Allgeyer)
Joseph Joachim

List of compositions

Fuller-Maitland, p. 56, lists the 14 pieces with opus numbers, not necessarily with the same details as below. On p. 57 he lists 6 of the 14 pieces given here as WoO, plus the orchestration of the Schubert Grand Duo and the Beethoven and Brahms concerto cadenzas.

Original compositions

  • Op. 1, Andantino and Allegro scherzoso, for violin and piano (1848): dedicated to Joseph Böhm
  • Op. 2, Drei Stücke (3 Pieces) for violin or viola and piano, (circa 1848–1852): Romanze, Fantasiestück, Eine Frühlingsfantasie; dedicated to Moritz Hauptmann
  • Op. 3, Violin Concerto in One Movement, in G minor (1851); dedicated to Franz Liszt
  • Op. 4, Hamlet Overture (1853); dedicated to Kapelle of Weimar
  • Op. 5, Three Pieces for Violin and Piano: Lindenrauschen, Abendglocken, Ballade; dedicated to Gisela von Arnim
  • Op. 6, Demetrius Overture (1853, to a play by Herman Friedrich Grimm; overture dedicated to Franz Liszt)
  • Op. 7, Henry IV Overture (1854)
  • Op. 8, Overture to a Comedy by Gozzi (1854); dedicated to Fritz Steinbach.
  • Op. 9, Hebräische Melodien, nach Eindrücken der Byron'schen Gesänge (Hebrew Melodies, after Impressions of Byron's Songs) for viola and piano (1854–1855)
  • Op. 10, Variationen über ein eigenes Thema (Variations on an Original Theme) in E major for viola and piano (1854); dedicated to Hermann Grimm.
  • Op. 11, Violin Concerto No. 2 in D minor "in the Hungarian Manner" (ca. 1853, published in 1861); dedicated to Johannes Brahms. It is said that the solo violin part of the Hungarian Concerto is very difficult to play.[64]
  • Op. 12, Notturno for Violin and Small Orchestra in A major (1858)
  • WoO, Violin Concerto No. 3 in G major (1875)
  • Op. 13, Elegiac Overture "In Memoriam Heinrich von Kleist" (ca. 1877)
  • Op. 14, Szene der Marfa from Friedrich Schiller's unfinished drama Demetrius (ca. 1869)
  • WoO Haidenröslein Lied for high voice and piano; pub. Verlag des Ungar, 1846.
  • WoO, Ich hab' im Traum geweinet for voice and piano, pub. Wigand, 1854.
  • WoO, Scene from Schiller's Demetrius (1878)
  • WoO, Rain, rain and sun, Merlin's Song (Tennyson), pub. C. Kegan & Co., 1880.
  • WoO, Melodrama zu einer Schillergedenkfeier (unpublished, autograph in Hamburg Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek)
  • WoO, Overture in C major (Konzertouvertüre zum Geburtstag des Kaisers) (1896)[65]
  • WoO, Two Marches for orchestra, in C and D[65]
  • WoO, Andantino in A minor, for violin and orchestra (also for violin and piano)[66]
  • WoO, Romance in B-flat major, for violin and piano
  • WoO, Romance in C major, for violin and piano; pub. C. F. Kahnt Nachfolge, Leipzig, 1894.
  • WoO, String Quartet Movement in C minor
  • WoO, Variationen über ein irisches Elfenlied for piano (first publ. by J. Schuberth & Co. Hamburg, 1989. Edited by Michael Struck.)
  • WoO, Variations for Violin and Orchestra in E minor (ca. 1879); dedicated to Pablo Sarasate
  • WoO, Fantasie über ungarische Motive (ca. 1850); premiered in Weimar under Franz Liszt in October 1850[67]
  • WoO, Fantasie über irische [schottische] Motive (ca. 1852); premiered in London in May 1852[68]
Menzel 1853 Joseph Joachim
Joseph Joachim (1853) by Adolph Menzel

An orchestration


  • Beethoven, Concerto in D major, Op. 61[70]
  • Brahms, Concerto in D major, Op. 77[71]
  • Kreutzer, Concerto No. 19 in D minor
  • Mozart, Aria from Il re pastore, K. 208, Concerto No. 3 in G major, K. 216, Concerto No. 4 in D major, K. 218, and Concerto No. 5 in A major, K. 219
  • Rode, Concerto No. 10 in B minor, and Concerto No. 11 in D major
  • Spohr, Concerto in A minor, Op. 47 (Gesangsszene)
  • Tartini, Sonata in G minor (Devil's Trill)
  • Viotti, Concerto No. 22 in A minor

Recordings of Joachim's compositions

Joseph Joachim at age 53

Joachim's own discography

  • J. S. Bach: Partita for Violin No. 1 in B minor, BWV 1002: 7th movement, Tempo di Bourrée, Pearl Catalog: 9851 (also on Testament (749677132323)).
  • Brahms: Hungarian Dances (21) for Piano 4 hands, WoO 1: No. 1 in G minor (arr. Joachim), Opal Recordings (also on Testament (749677132323)).
  • Brahms: Hungarian Dance No. 2 in D minor (arr. Joachim), Grammophon Catalogue #047905; HMV, D88.
  • Joachim: Romance in C major, Op. 20, Pearl Catalog: 9851

Original pressings are single-sided and have a flat red G&T label. Later reeditions have a black G&T label (or, from 1909, a label showing the 'His Master's Voice' trade-mark), and those made for the German market are double-sided.

A letter preserved in the EMI archives records the stringent conditions Joachim expected for the publicity for his recordings: sensational adverts were to be avoided, with no comparisons between his art and that of other violinists. The letter also stated that "it was only with the greatest difficulty that Professor Joachim was induced to play".[72]

Joachim's students

Joseph Joachim and the young Franz von Vecsey. Note the strongly incurving, arthritic first finger of his left hand. The chair in which he is sitting was a special present to him. He willed it to Donald Tovey, and it is now owned by the University of Edinburgh Museum.[73]
  • Leopold Auer, violinist and teacher; studied with Joachim in Hanover. Among his many outstanding students were Mischa Elman, Jascha Heifetz, and Nathan Milstein.
  • Aylmer Buesst
  • Willy Burmester
  • Carl Courvoisier (1846–1908), author of Technics of Violin Playing on Joachim's Method, London: The Strad Library, No. I, 1894.
  • Bram Eldering (1865–1943), Concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic under Hans von Bülow; Concertmaster of the Meininger Hofkapelle
  • Adila Fachiri, Joachim's grandniece
  • F. Fleischhauer (born 1834), Hofconcertmeister in Meiningen
  • Sam Franko
  • Richard Gompertz (born 1859), professor of violin at the Royal College of Music, London
  • Jakob Moritz Grũn, born in Pest, 1837; Joachim resigned a position to protest his non-advancement for being Jewish. Has an article in German Wikipedia.
  • Karel (Carl) Halíř (1859–1909), Bohemian violinist, member of the Joachim Quartet
  • Willy Hess
  • Gustav Hille
  • Richard Himmelstoß (born 1843), Concertmaster in Breslau
  • Theodore Holland (1878–1947), British composer and teacher.
  • Gustav Holländer (born 1855), solo violinist
  • Jenő Hubay, Hungarian violinist, composer
  • Bronisław Huberman[74]
  • Karl Klingler, violinist of the Klingler Quartet and Joachim's successor at the Berlin Hochschule; Klingler was the teacher of Shinichi Suzuki.
  • Iosif Kotek (1855–1885), Russian violinist
  • Hans Letz, Concertmaster of the Theodore Thomas Orchestra[75]
  • Bernhard Listemann, Concertmaster of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.[76]
  • Charles Martin Loeffler (1861–1935)
  • Martin Marsick
  • Pietro Melani
  • Waldemar J. Meyer (1853–1940)
  • Bernardo V. Moreira de Sá (1853–1924), Portuguese violinist and teacher; director of the "Conservatório de Música do Porto"; director and founder of the "Orpheon Portuense"; studied with Joachim in Berlin
  • Andreas Moser (1859–1925), violinist and assistant to Joachim; Moser wrote the first biography of Joachim, Moser (1901), on Joachim's life up through 1899. He helped recover original scores of J.S. Bach's Sonate e Partite per violino solo, and collaborated with Joachim on numerous editions.
  • Tivadar Nachéz (1859–1930)
  • Henri Petri, Concertmaster in Leipzig
  • Lili Petschnikoff (1874-1957), American violinist
  • Maximilian Pilzer, Concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic (1915–1917),[77][78]
  • Enrico Polo (1868–1953), Italian violinist, violist, pedagogue
  • Maud Powell, American violinist[79]
  • Willibald Richter (1860–1929), German-born English pianist, organist and teacher; student, friend and accompanist of Joachim; student of Haupt, Lebert, Liszt, Mischalek and Oscar; founded College of Music at Leicester
  • Camillo Ritter, teacher of leading violist William Primrose
  • Ossip Schnirlin (? – 1937)
  • Emily Shinner[80]
  • Axel Skovgaard
  • Maria Soldat-Röger
  • Theodore Spiering, American violinist; born in St. Louis, lived in Chicago; Concertmaster (1909–1911) of New York Philharmonic
  • Franz von Vecsey, studied with Hubay, then Joachim; dedicatee of the Sibelius violin concerto
  • Alfred Wittenberg

Other pupils may be mentioned by Wilhelm Joseph von Wasielewski in his "Die Violine und Ihre Meister."

Joachim's instruments

Most, but not all, of the many violins (and two violas) Joachim is said to have had during his career are shown on the website of Tarisio Auctions, Further information, in German, is in the article by Kamlah (2013).

Joachim standing
Joseph Joachim
  • His first (full-size) violin was a Guarneri Filius Andreae 1703, which he gave to Felix Schumann after he acquired his first Stradivarius.
  • A violin, the ex-Joachim Stradivarius of 1715 is currently held by the Collezione Civica del Comune di Cremona.[81] It was presented to Joachim on the occasion of his Jubilee celebration in 1889.
  • The Ex Joachim, Joseph Vieland Viola by Gasparo da Salò, Brescia, before 1609 is held by the Shrine to Music No. 3368.[82]
  • A Johannes Theodorus Cuypers anno 1807 was bought by Joachim in the mid 19th century and taken on tour throughout Europe. There is also evidence that the instrument was played by Joachim in a recital in Paris a half century later, in 1895. The same instrument was also played by Fritz Kreisler in a 1955 Carnegie Hall concert.[83]

Cultural references

The English poet Robert Bridges wrote a sonnet about Joachim in his first major work of poetry The Growth of Love.[84]


  1. ^ a b Campbell, p. 74
  2. ^ Monk, Ludwig Wittgenstein: The Duty of Genius: p. 5
  3. ^ Moser, 1901, p. 3
  4. ^ Moser, p. 6
  5. ^ Fuller-Maitland, p. 2
  6. ^ Moser, p. 17
  7. ^ Fuller-Maitland, p. 3
  8. ^ Campbell, p. 75
  9. ^ Fuller Maitland, p. 4
  10. ^ Moser, 1901, pp. 8–9
  11. ^ Moser, p. 38
  12. ^ a b Avins, 2002
  13. ^ "London Philharmonic Debut". Joseph Joachim.
  14. ^ Moser, 1901, p. 57
  15. ^ Fuller-Maitland, p. 13
  16. ^ Moser, p. 32
  17. ^ Moser, p. 76
  18. ^ Moser, 1901, pp. 39, 43–44
  19. ^ Moser, p. 78
  20. ^ Campbell, 1981, p. 76
  21. ^ Swafford, p. 174, in another translation
  22. ^ Leopold Auer, Violin Playing as I Teach It, Dover, New York, 1980, p. 5
  23. ^ Auer, 1923, pp. 58–59
  24. ^ Moser, pp. 116–117
  25. ^ Moser, p. 117
  26. ^ Moser, p. 120.
  27. ^ a b Moser, p. 121
  28. ^ Swafford, p. 62
  29. ^ Swafford, p. 63
  30. ^ Moser, p. 127
  31. ^ Swafford, p. 75
  32. ^ Swafford, p. 130
  33. ^ Swafford, p. 133
  34. ^ Gal, p. 60
  35. ^ Gal, p. 61
  36. ^ Gal, p. 114
  37. ^ Gal, p. 115
  38. ^ Fuller Maitland, p. 55
  39. ^ Litzmann, 1913,  p. 152
  40. ^ Arts & Humanities Research Council Concert Programmes, St. James's Hall Concerts (1867–1904)
  41. ^ Avins, Styra, "Joseph Joachim", in Oxford Companion to Music, ed. Alison Latham, Oxford University Press, 2002–2003, p. 637
  42. ^ Louis Ries, born 1830, was the son of Hubert Ries. For a listing of Joachim's concert which includes some Monday Popular Concerts, see:
  43. ^ Zerbini was of Australian origin. An obituary for him in the Illustrated Australian News (Melbourne) 1 January 1892 says he was "acknowledged to be one of the finest viola players in the world."
  44. ^ Shaw, George Bernard (1937), London Music in 1888–89 as heard by Corno di Bassetto, etc. (Constable, London), p. 297
  45. ^ Litzmann, p. 289
  46. ^ Litzmann, p. 294
  47. ^ Litzmann, pp. 249–250
  48. ^ Jan Swafford, Johannes Brahms, Knopf (1997), reprinted in the UK by Papermac (1999) pp. 207–211
  49. ^ Moser (1901) 202–206
  50. ^ Stowell, ed., 2003
  51. ^ Gal, p. 216
  52. ^ Campbell, p. 81
  53. ^ Fuller-Maitland p. 56
  54. ^ Moser 1901, p. 282
  55. ^ Fuller-Maitland, 1901, p. 18
  56. ^ a b Moser 1901, p. 324
  57. ^ Moser 1901, p. 325
  58. ^ "OCMC history".
  59. ^
  60. ^ a b Steinberg, p. 265
  61. ^ Fuller Maitland, p. 25
  62. ^ Fuller Maitland, pp. 39, 49
  63. ^ sleeve note, naxos 8.557428, BRAHMS: Sym. No. 1/Tragic Overture/Academic Festival Overture
  64. ^ Fuler Maitland, p. 52
  65. ^ a b Fuller-Maitland, 1905, p. 57
  66. ^ Fuller-Maitland, 1905, p. 60
  67. ^ Uhde, Katharina. The Music of Joseph Joachim (Suffolk: Boydell & Brewer, 2018), 41
  68. ^ Uhde, Katharina. The Music of Joseph Joachim (Suffolk: Boydell & Brewer, 2018), 21.
  69. ^ There are recordings, by the Vienna State Opera Orchestra conductor Felix Prohaska, and the Houston Symphony conducted by Christoph Eschenbach.
  70. ^ Joachim's was an early cadenza; later many others wrote more
  71. ^ Joachim's cadenza to Brahms's concerto came to be 'almost always' played, according to Fuller-Maitland, 1905, p. 55
  72. ^ Jenkins, Lyndon. The EMI Archive. International Classic Record Collector. Summer 1997, Vol.2 No.9, p40.
  73. ^ The University of Edinburgh Museums, Galleries & Collections Archived 2009-05-03 at the Wayback Machine
  74. ^ "Bronislaw Huberman".
  75. ^ "Hans Letz".
  76. ^ de:Bernhard Listemann
  77. ^ archives.nyphil.orgindex.php
  78. ^ "Russian Symphony Orchestra of New York".
  79. ^ "Department of Music".
  80. ^ "Famous Violinists of To-Day and Yesterday".
  81. ^ "Tarisio". Archived from the original on 2005-03-24.
  82. ^ Bowed Stringed Instruments Made Before 1800 at the National Music Museum
  83. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-02-29. Retrieved 2007-08-17.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  84. ^ "Robert Bridges".


Joseph Joachim
Joseph Joachim
  • Leopold Auer, 1923, My long Life in Music, F. A. Stokes, New York
  • Styra Avins, "Joachim, Joseph", in The Oxford Companion to Music, ed. Alison Latham, Oxford University Press, 2002, pp. 637–638, ISBN 978-0-19-866212-9
  • Ute Bär, "Sie wissen ja, wie gerne ich, selbst öffentlich, mit Ihnen musicire! Clara Schumann und Joseph Joachim", Die Tonkunst, vol. 1, nr. 3, July 2007, 247–257.
  • Otto Biba, "'Ihr Sie hochachtender, dankbarer Schüler Peppi', Joseph Joachims Jugend im Spiegel bislang unveröffentlicher Briefe", Die Tonkunst, vol. 1, nr. 3, July 2007, 200–204.
  • Nora Bickley, selector and translator, Letters From and To Joseph Joachim, with a preface by J. A. Fuller-Maitland, New York: Vienna House, 1972.
  • Beatrix Borchard, Stimme und Geige: Amalie und Joseph Joachim, Biographie und Interpretationsgeschichte, Wien, Köln, Weimar, Böhlau Verlag, 2005.
  • Beatrix Borchard, "Groß-männlich-deutsch? Zur Rolle Joseph Joachims für das deutsche Musikleben in der Wilhelminischen Zeit", Die Tonkunst, vol. 1, nr. 3, July 2007, 218–231.
  • Siegfried Borris, "Joseph Joachim zum 65. Todestag", Oesterreichische Musikzeitschrift XXVII (June 1972): 352–355.
  • Margaret Campbell, 1981, The Great Violinists, Doubleday, Garden City, New York. (Has a chapter on Joachim)
  • F. G. E., "Joseph Joachim", The Musical Times, 48/775 (September 1, 1907): 577–583.
  • Robert W. Eshbach, "Der Geigerkönig: Joseph Joachim as Performer", Die Tonkunst, vol. 1, nr. 3, July 2007, 205–217.
  • Robert W. Eshbach, "Verehrter Freund! Liebes Kind! Liebster Jo! Mein einzig Licht. Intimate letters in Brahms's Freundeskreis", Die Tonkunst, vol. 2, nr. 2, April 2008, 178–193
  • Robert W. Eshbach, "Joachims Jugend", Die Tonkunst, vol. 5, nr. 2, April 2011, 176–190.
  • Robert W. Eshbach, "Joachim's Youth – Joachim's Jewishness", The Musical Quarterly, vol. 94, no. 4, Winter 2011, 548–592
  • J. A. Fuller-Maitland, Joseph Joachim, London & New York: John Lane, 1905, a Google Book; repr. Bibliobazaar, 2010, public domain
  • Johannes Joachim and Andreas Moser (eds.), Briefe von und an Joseph Joachim, 3 vols., Berlin: Julius Bard, 1911–1913
  • Hans Gál, Johannes Brahms: His Work and Personality, transl. from German by Joseph Stein, Knopf, New York, 1971.
  • Ruprecht Kamlah, Joseph Joachims Guarneri-Geigen, Eine Untersuchung im Hinblick auf die Familie Wittgenstein, Wiener Geschichtsblätter 2013, Vol. 1, p. 33, posted on "Joseph Joachim: Biography and Research", 2015.
  • Ruprecht Kamlah, "Joseph Joachims Geigen, Ihre Geschichten und Spieler, besonders der Sammler Wilhelm Kux, Palm und Enke, Erlangen 2018, ISBN 978-3-7896-1023-3, 230 pages.
  • Adolph Kohut, Josef Joachim. Ein Lebens- und Künstlerbild. Festschrift zu seinem 60. Geburtstage, am 28. Juni 1891, Berlin: A. Glas, 1891.
  • Berthold Litzmann, 1913, Clara Schumann: An Artist's Life based on material found in Diaries and Letters, Translated from the fourth German edition by Grace E. Hadow, MacMillan, London.
  • Brigitte Massin, Les Joachim: Une Famille de Musiciens, Paris: Fayard, 1999. ISBN 2-213-60418-5
  • Andreas Moser (ed.), Johannes Brahms im Briefwechsel mit Joseph Joachim, 2nd ed., Berlin: Deutsche Brahms-Gesellschaft, 1912.
  • Andreas Moser, Joseph Joachim: Ein Lebensbild, 2 vols. Berlin: Verlag der Deutschen Brahms-Gesellschaft, vol. 1: 1908; vol. 2: 1910. (Published after the following translation, so must be a revised edition?)
  • Andreas Moser, Joseph Joachim: A Biography (1831–1899), translated by Lilla Durham, introduction by J. A. Fuller-Maitland, London: Philip Wellby, 1901. (Published during Joachim's lifetime)
  • Hans Joachim Moser, Joseph Joachim, Sechsundneunzigstes Neujahrsblatt der Allgemeinen Musikgesellschaft in Zürich, Zürich & Leipzig: Hug & Co., 1908
  • Anne Russell, "Joachim", The Etude, (December 1932) 884–885.
  • Dietmar Shenk, "Aus einer Gründerzeit: Joseph Joachim, die Berliner Hochschule für Musik und der deutsch-französische Krieg", Die Tonkunst, vol. 1, nr. 3, July 2007, 232–246.
  • Michael Steinberg, The Concerto: A Listener's Guide, Oxford University Press, 1998, ISBN 0-19-510330-0
  • Barrett Stoll, Joseph Joachim: Violinist, Pedagogue, and Composer, Ph.D. Diss., Univ. of Iowa, 1978.
  • Karl Storck, Joseph Joachim: Eine Studie, Leipzig: Hermann Seemann Nachfolger, n.d.
  • Robert Stowell, Ed., Cambridge Companion to the String Quartet, Cambridge University Press, 2003.
  • Jan Swafford, Johannes Brahms: A Biography, Knopf and Vintage Books, 1997.
  • Uhde, Katharina, The Music of Joseph Joachim, Boydell & Brewer, 2018.
  • Gerhard Winkler (ed.) "Geigen-Spiel-Kunst: Joseph Joachim und der 'Wahre' Fortschritt", Burgenländische Heimatblätter, vol. 69, nr. 2, 2007.

External links

Albert Dietrich

Albert Hermann Dietrich (28 August 1829 – 20 November 1908), was a German composer and conductor, remembered less for his own achievements than for his friendship with Johannes Brahms.

Dietrich was born at Golk, near Meissen. From 1851 he studied composition with Robert Schumann in Düsseldorf, where in October 1853 he first met Brahms and collaborated with Schumann and Brahms on the 'F-A-E' Sonata for Joseph Joachim (Dietrich composed the substantial first movement). From 1861 until 1890 he was the musical director at the court of Oldenburg, where Brahms often visited him and where he introduced many of Brahms’s works. It was in Dietrich’s library that Brahms discovered the volume of poetry by Hölderlin that furnished him with the text for his Schicksalslied, which he began composing while visiting Wilhelmshaven dockyard in Dietrich’s company. Dietrich was also instrumental in arranging for the premiere of Brahms’s Ein deutsches Requiem at Bremen in 1868. Dietrich’s own works include an opera Robin Hood, a Symphony in D minor (1869, dedicated to Brahms), a Violin Concerto in the same key (composed for Joseph Joachim but premiered in 1874 by Johann Lauterbach), a Cello Concerto, Horn Concerto, choral works and several chamber compositions including two piano trios.

Dietrich's Recollections of Brahms, published in Leipzig in 1898, was translated into English the following year and remains an important biographical source. The Brahms scholar David Brodbeck has theorized (The Cambridge Companion to Brahms, 1999) that Dietrich is the most likely author of the anonymous Piano Trio in A major, discovered in 1924, which some scholars have attributed to Brahms; but Malcolm MacDonald (Brahms, 2nd ed, 2001) has maintained that, if any specific composer is to be sought for this work, Brahms remains the more likely candidate on balance of stylistic probabilities.

Albert Dietrich died in Berlin. One of his students was Ernst Eduard Taubert.

Amalie Joachim

Amalie Joachim, née Schneeweiss (10 May 1839 – 3 February 1899) was an Austrian-German contralto, working in opera and concert and as voice teacher. She was the wife of the violinist Joseph Joachim, and a friend of Clara Schumann and Johannes Brahms, with whom she made international tours.

Beethoven Quartet Society

The Beethoven Quartet Society was a musical society established in 1845 in London, England dedicated to the String quartets of Ludwig van Beethoven.

The society was established by Thomas Massa Alsager (1779–1846). Its establishment was encouraged by Alsager's "Queen Square Select Society" and John Ella's Musical Union. The Beethoven Quartet Society was based at the Beethoven Rooms at 76 Harley Street, London. Concerts were given under the title "Honour to Beethoven", and included works by other composers. One of its express aims was to study the late quartets from score. After Alsager's death in 1846 French cellist Scipion Rousselot directed the society. Violist Henry Hill (1837–1856) undertook writing the programme notes.

The society were the first to present a performance of the complete cycle of the Beethoven string quartets, running from April 21, 1845 and June 16, 1845, with Camillo Sivori, Prosper Sainton, Henry Hill and Scipion Rousselot.

Other musicians, who played at the society's concerts, include Joseph Joachim, Henryk Wieniawski (both as violinist and violist), Heinrich Wilhelm Ernst, Alfredo Piatti, Louis Ries, William Sterndale Bennett and Ludwig Strauss.

One particular line-up during the 1850s was noted by Joachim's biographer Andreas Moser with Joachim and Ernst playing the violin, Wieniawski the viola, and Piatti the cello. This, however, is highly unlikely since Wieniawski first visited England in 1859 and Ernst's last stay dates from 1858 or even 1856.Hector Berlioz attended at least one of the society's concerts at the "New Beethoven Room" (at the building at 27 Queen Anne Street, where Berlioz lived) and this made enough of an impression to mention it in his book Evenings with the Orchestra.


Brahms-Institut acquired the largest private collection of Johannes Brahms engravings, manuscripts and first and early prints in 1990. In addition to Brahms, the focus is on Robert and Clara Schumann, Theodor Kirchner, Joseph Joachim, and some lesser known performers and composers of the era. In addition to music manuscripts, the collection also includes correspondence, photos, and drawings.

Cello Sonata No. 2 (Brahms)

The Cello Sonata No. 2 in F major, Op. 99, was written by Johannes Brahms in 1886, more than twenty years after completing his Sonata No. 1. It was first published in 1887. It was written for, dedicated to and first performed by Robert Hausmann, who had popularised the First Sonata, and who would the following year be given the honour of premiering the Double Concerto in A minor with Joseph Joachim.

Clara Schumann

Clara Schumann (; née Clara Josephine Wieck; 13 September 1819 – 20 May 1896) was a German musician and composer, considered one of the most distinguished composers and pianists of the Romantic era. She exerted her influence over a 61-year concert career, changing the format and repertoire of the piano recital, while also having composed a body of work including various piano concertos, chamber works, and choral pieces. She was married to composer Robert Schumann, and together they encouraged and maintained a close relationship with Johannes Brahms. She was the first to perform publicly any work by Brahms, notably the Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel. She was also an influential piano educator at the Hoch Conservatory in Frankfurt.

F-A-E Sonata

The F-A-E Sonata, a four-movement work for violin and piano, is a collaborative musical work by three composers: Robert Schumann, the young Johannes Brahms, and Schumann's pupil Albert Dietrich. It was composed in Düsseldorf in October 1853.

The sonata was Schumann's idea as a gift and tribute to violinist Joseph Joachim, whom the three composers had recently befriended. Joachim had adopted the Romantic German phrase "Frei aber einsam" ("free but lonely") as his personal motto. The composition's movements are all based on the musical notes F-A-E, the motto's initials, as a musical cryptogram.

Schumann assigned each movement to one of the composers. Dietrich wrote the substantial first movement in sonata form. Schumann followed with a short Intermezzo as the second movement. The Scherzo was by Brahms, who had already proven himself a master of this form in his E flat minor Scherzo for piano and the scherzi in his first two piano sonatas. Schumann provided the finale.

Schumann penned the following dedication on the original score: "F.A.E.: In Erwartung der Ankunft des verehrten und geliebten Freundes JOSEPH JOACHIM schrieben diese Sonate R.S., J.B., A.D." ("F.A.E.: In expectation of the arrival of their revered and beloved friend, Joseph Joachim, this sonata was written by R.S., J.B., A.D.").The composers presented the score to Joachim on 28 October at a soirée in the Schumann household, which Bettina von Arnim and her daughter Gisela also attended. The composers challenged Joachim to determine who composed each movement. Joachim played the work that evening, with Clara Schumann at the piano. Joachim identified each movement's author with ease.The complete work was not published during the composers' lifetimes. Schumann incorporated his two movements into his Violin Sonata No. 3. Joachim retained the original manuscript, from which he allowed only Brahms's Scherzo to be published in 1906, nearly ten years after Brahms's death. Whether Dietrich made any further use of his sonata-allegro is not known. The complete sonata was first published in 1935.

All three composers also wrote violin concerti for Joachim. Schumann's was completed on 3 October 1853, just before the F-A-E Sonata was begun. Joachim never performed it, unlike the concertos of Brahms and Dietrich.

Steven Isserlis, the English cellist and Schumann aficionado, has transcribed the F-A-E Sonata for cello and piano.

Jenő Hubay

Jenő Hubay, Jenő Hubay von Szalatna, Hungarian: szalatnai Hubay Jenő (Hungarian pronunciation: [ˈjɛnøː ˈhubɒi]; 15 September 1858 – 12 March 1937), also known by his German name Eugen Huber (pronounced [ˈɔʏɡeːn ˈhuːbɐ]), was a Hungarian violinist, composer and music teacher.

Joachim Raff

Joseph Joachim Raff (27 May 1822 – 24 or 25 June 1882) was a German-Swiss composer, teacher and pianist.

Leopold Auer

Leopold von Auer (Hungarian: 'Auer Lipót'; June 7, 1845 – July 15, 1930) was a Hungarian violinist, academic, conductor and composer, best known as an outstanding violin teacher.

Maud Powell

Minnie "Maud" Powell (August 22, 1867 – January 8, 1920) was an American violinist who gained international acclaim for her skill and virtuosity.

Piano Sonata No. 1 (Brahms)

The Piano Sonata No. 1 in C major, Op. 1, of Johannes Brahms was written in Hamburg in 1853, and published later that year. Despite being his first published work, he had actually composed his Piano Sonata No. 2 first, but chose this work to be his first published opus because he felt that it was of higher quality. The piece was sent along with his second sonata to Breitkopf & Härtel with a letter of recommendation from Robert Schumann. Schumann had already praised Brahms enthusiastically, and the sonata shows signs of an effort to impress in its technical demands and dramatic character. It was dedicated to Joseph Joachim.

The sonata is in four movements:

The first movement is in conventional sonata form with a repeated exposition. The opening of the first theme resembles the opening of Beethoven's "Hammerklavier" Sonata. The second movement is a theme and variations inspired by the song Verstohlen geht der Mond auf. Brahms was to rewrite it for female chorus in 1859 (WoO 38/20). The third movement is a scherzo and trio. The fourth is a loose rondo whose theme is noticeably changed at every recurrence. The form of the rondo is a palindrome ABACACABA.

String Quartet No. 2 (Nielsen)

Carl Nielsen's String Quartet No. 2 in F minor or Quartet for Two Violins, Viola and Cello in F minor, Opus 5, was composed in 1890, partly in Denmark but mostly in Germany where the composer was travelling on a stipend. The second of Nielsen's four string quartets in the official series, it was first performed privately for Joseph Joachim on 18 November 1890 at the Hochschule für Ausübende Tonkunst in Berlin.

String Quartet No. 6 (Mendelssohn)

The String Quartet No. 6 in F minor, Op. 80 was composed by Felix Mendelssohn in 1847. It was the last major piece he completed before he died two months later on 4 November 1847. He composed the piece as an homage to his sister Fanny who had died on 17 May of that year and it bore the title "Requiem for Fanny."

The quartet was first heard in private on 5 October 1847 in the presence of Ignaz Moscheles. The first public performance was on 4 November 1848 in Leipzig with Joseph Joachim playing the violin. The score was published in 1850 by Breitkopf & Härtel. The original manuscript is in the Jagiellonian Library in Kraków, Poland.

String Sextet No. 1 (Brahms)

The String Sextet No. 1 in B♭ major, Op. 18, was composed in 1860 by Johannes Brahms and premiered in Hanover by an ensemble led by Joseph Joachim. It was published in 1862 by the firm of Fritz Simrock.

The sextet is scored for two violins, two violas, and two cellos.

The sextet has four movements:

The outlines of the main themes of the first movement and finale are similar (the first four notes of the cello theme of the first movement are almost identical with those of notes two to five of the finale, and there are other similarities more easily heard).

In the same year of its composition, Brahms transcribed the second movement for solo piano, dedicating the arrangement to Clara Schumann.

Theodore Spiering

Theodore Bernays Spiering (September 5, 1871 – August 11, 1925) was an American violinist, conductor and teacher.

Spiering was born in Old North St. Louis, Missouri, where at age five he took his first lessons in violin from his father, concertmaster of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. He made his first public appearance at age seven. He studied at the College of Music of Cincinnati, now the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, with violin teacher Henry Schradieck. He studied with Joseph Joachim in Berlin from 1888 to 1892 and later became concertmaster of the orchestra of Joachim Hochschule.With a letter of recommendation from Joachim, Spiering joined the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1892 and remained with that organization until 1896. He often appeared as a soloist with conductor Theodore Thomas. Spiering also organized the Spiering Quartet, which performed 400 concerts between 1893 and 1905. He founded the Spiering Violin School and was also director and instructor of violin for the Chicago Musical College from 1902 to 1905 followed by four years of concert tours in Europe. Gustav Mahler chose him as concertmaster for the New York Philharmonic for two years from 1909, and Spiering was called to conduct the orchestra for the final seventeen concerts of 1911 during Mahler's illness. Although it was expected Spiering would be chosen as Mahler's successor, the tradition of seeking European conductors lead to the selection of Josef Stransky. Disappointed, Spiering returned to Europe, where he guest conducted the Berlin Philharmonic and Blüthner orchestras. Although he sought the position of music director of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, but the position was given to Rudolf Ganz instead.

With the start of World War I, Spiering returned to New York City and engaged in teaching and conducting the philharmonic. In September 1923, he returned again to Berlin and Vienna, where he continued to guest conduct. In 1925, he was appointed conductor of the Oregon Symphony, then the Portland Symphony Orchestra, which he previously conducted as part of a rotating triumvirate. For rest and also to choose new scores for the orchestra, he traveled to Europe after the appointment. In the summer of 1925, Spiering became ill while traveling and died in Munich before the beginning of the fall symphony season. His body was later repatriated and buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery in St. Louis.

Two Songs for Voice, Viola and Piano

Two Songs for Voice, Viola and Piano, Op. 91, were composed by Johannes Brahms for his friends Joseph Joachim and his wife Amalie. The full title is Zwei Gesänge für eine Altstimme mit Bratsche und Klavier (Two songs for an alto voice with viola and piano). The text of the first song, "Gestillte Sehnsucht" (Longing at rest), is a poem by Friedrich Rückert, composed in 1884. The text of the second, "Geistliches Wiegenlied" (Sacred lullaby) was written by Emanuel Geibel after Lope de Vega, and set to music in 1863. They were published together in 1884.

Violin Concerto (Beethoven)

Ludwig van Beethoven composed his Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 61, in 1806. Its first performance by Franz Clement was unsuccessful and for some decades the work languished in obscurity, until revived in 1844 by Joseph Joachim. Since then it has become one of the best-known violin concertos.

Violin Sonata (Dvořák)

The Sonata for Violin and Piano in F major, Op. 57 (Czech: Sonata F dur pro housle a klavír), is a violin sonata by Antonín Dvořák. The work was composed between 3 and 17 March 1880. At the time, Dvořák was also working on his violin concerto, and it seems that the composer explored different aspects of the violin in the two pieces. The sonata is naturally the more intimate of the two works, and appears in places to be influenced by Johannes Brahms.

Dvořák played the work on 31 March 1880 with the famous violinist Joseph Joachim, who reacted positively (a contrast to Joachim's ambivalence over aspects of the Violin Concerto). The details of the first public performance are not known, though on 5 October 1881 there was an early performance at a meeting of the Prague Umělecká Beseda. On that occasion the violinist was František Ondříček (who also premiered the violin concerto), while the piano part was taken by Karel Kovařovic, later to become a successful composer.

The Sonata is in three movements:

It is numbered as Op. 57; and as B. 106 in the catalogue by Jarmil Burghauser.

The manuscript is preserved in the National Museum in Prague. The first edition was published by N. Simrock in 1880, prepared under the composer's supervision.

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