Hugo Wolf

Biography

Born: March 13, 1860; Windischgraz, Austria   Died: February 22, 1903; Vienna, Austria  
Hugo Wolf, a native of Windischgraz (now Slovenjgradec, Slovenia), in the Austro-Hungarian province of Styria, was born on March 13, 1860 and died on February 22, 1903, three weeks before his 43rd birthday -- like Schubert, German music's first great lieder composer, of tertiary syphilis. Like Schumann, the other great lieder composer (also syphilitic), Wolf died in an insane asylum after trying to drown himself in October 1898. (He had committed Read more himself a year earlier, but was discharged after four months.) Also like Schumann, he composed in manic bursts between periods of depression, once the disease entered its second stage, and like two predecessors, was an unsuccessful composer of stage music.

Wolf completed only one opera, Der Corregidor (1895-1896), based on the same Spanish comedy Falla later used in The Three-Cornered Hat. Indifferently and with difficulty he also composed incidental music for two plays long forgotten. As a teenager, he began but never finished a violin concerto and two symphonies (in 1879 he lost the manuscript of a third symphony while traveling). His orchestral repertory amounts to Penthesilea (after Kleist; 1883-1885), a turbidly scored, Liszt-Wagnerian symphonic poem; Christnacht, a choral work both naive and sublime (1886-1889), and the Italian Serenade (a 1892 arrangement of his charming 1887 Serenade in G for String Quartet).

Despite haphazard education that ended in a series of expulsions, Wolf the lieder composer was possessed of (and by) a psychological insight that revealed as early as 1878 what poured forth later between arid stretches -- some 300 songs, the finest of them both emotionally penetrating and musically profound. Mörike, Goethe (the Mignon - Lieder are incomparable), Kleist, Lenau, and Heine were his favorite German poets, plus Eichendorff when Wolf reached the expressive summit in 1887. For three years prior he had been an outspoken critic -- the only job he ever held -- in Vienna's weekly Salonblatt. Pro-Wagner and anti-Brahms, he was as honest as Berlioz had been, and thus made powerful enemies who took revenge later on. Wolf habitually lived hand to mouth, supported by a circle of friends who provided shelter and sustenance for ten years, and finally in 1896 gave him his own apartment. By then, however, the disease had entered its third stage, and his mood swings alienated many who cared deeply. On September 19, 1897, he cracked -- blaming Mahler, his friend of 20 years and onetime roommate, of sabotaging Der Corregidor at the Hofoper.

In October 1889, Wolf had turned his attention from German poetry to translations of Spanish poets. Between Halloween and the following May, he composed 44 songs called the Spanish Songbook. Then, between September 1890 and December 1891, he composed 22 song translations comprising Part I of an Italian Songbook. Thereafter he didn't write a note of original music until March 1895, when he undertook Der Corregidor, completing all four acts in piano score within twelve weeks. After laboriously scoring it, he wrote twenty-four songs in isolation between 25 March and 30 April 1896 -- Part II of the Italian Songbook. He spent the next months revising Der Corregidor. After setting his last songs in March 1897, three somber sonnets by Michelangelo, Wolf worked tirelessly on another Spanish opera, Manuel Venegas, which amounted to 60 pages of piano score, before his breakdown. Following his death, he was buried alongside Beethoven and Schubert in Vienna's Central Cemetery, impoverished to the end but officially a cultural hero. Read less
Wolf, Berg: Lieder / Farninger, Valjakka, Et Al
Release Date: 03/28/1995   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 161   Number of Discs: 1
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Composition Type: Lieder (Various)

Browse 26-50 of 68 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Wolf: Lieder / Fischer-Dieskau, Barenboim [6-CD Collector's Edition]
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001408202 Release Date: 03/30/2010   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Daniel Barenboim
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  • 27.
    The Wolf Edition - 150th Anniversary
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 88608 Release Date: 03/09/2010   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Liese Klahn,  Monika Frimmer,  Erik Werba,  Brigitte Fassbaender  ... 
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  • 28.
    Festspieldokumente- Wolf: Lieder / Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 64905 Release Date: 02/25/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Gerald Moore
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  • 29.
    Wolf: 18 Morike Lieder, Michelangelo Lieder / Fischer-Dieskau
    Label: Emi Studio   Catalog: 63563 Release Date: 02/25/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Gerald Moore
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  • 30.
    Fruhlingsreise ohne Sonne - Holl, Mussorgsky, Wolf / Robert Holl
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 93382 Release Date: 02/11/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Robert Holl
    Performer:  Rudolf Jansen,  Robert Holl
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  • 31.
    Wolf: Lieder / Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Moore, Parsons
    Label: Emi Studio   Catalog: 63653 Release Date: 12/29/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Geoffrey Parsons,  Gerald Moore,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
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  • 32.
    Icon - Hans Hotter - The Great Bass-Baritone
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 64901 Release Date: 04/21/2009   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Schubert,  Edvard Grieg  ... 
    Performer:  Hans Hotter,  Sidney Sutcliffe,  Geraint Jones,  Gerald Moore  ... 
    Conductor:  Anthony Bernard,  Herbert von Karajan,  Wolfgang Sawallisch,  Meinhard von Zallinger  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Friends of Music Society Chorus  ... 
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  • 33.
    Classic Archive - Great Voices from the Golden Age
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 3078538 Release Date: 01/27/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Wagner,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Werner Egk,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Gré Brouwenstijn,  Galina Vishnevskaya,  Irmgard Seefried,  Gundula Janowitz  ... 
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  • 34.
    Color The Word / Georgine Resick, Warren Jones
    Label: Bridge   Catalog: 9268 Release Date: 09/09/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  André Caplet,  Henry Purcell,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Hugo Wolf  ... 
    Performer:  Warren Jones,  Georgine Resick
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  • 35.
    Wolf: Lieder / Fischer-dieskau, Ludwig, Barenboim
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 439975 Release Date: 06/25/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Daniel Barenboim,  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Christa Ludwig
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  • 36.
    Christa Ludwig - The Birthday Edition
    Label: Arthaus Musik   Catalog: 102089 Release Date: 03/25/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Gustav Mahler,  Hugo Wolf,  Franz Schubert  ... 
    Performer:  Christa Ludwig,  Charles Spencer
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  • 37.
    Patricia Brooks In Recital - Bach, Mahler, Puccini, Etc. / Wingreen, Lucarelli
    Label: Vai Audio   Catalog: 1270 Release Date: 12/11/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Gustav Mahler,  Hugo Wolf  ... 
    Performer:  Bert Lucarelli,  Patricia Brooks,  Harriet Wingreen
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  • 38.
    Wolf, Strauss: Lieder / Barbara Bonney, Geoffrey Parsons
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 429406 Release Date: 11/16/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf,  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Barbara Bonney,  Geoffrey Parsons
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  • 39.
    Hugo Wolf: Recital / Hanne-lore Kuhse, Helmut Oertel
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 3313 Release Date: 10/23/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf,  Alban Berg
    Performer:  Helmut Oertel,  Hanne-Lore Kuhse
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  • 40.
    Wolf: Lieder / Thomas Allen, Geoffrey Parsons
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 59221 Release Date: 09/24/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Thomas Allen,  Geoffrey Parsons
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  • 41.
    The Hugo Wolf Society - The Complete Edition 1931-1938
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 566640 Release Date: 07/26/2007   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Michael Raucheisen,  Gerald Moore,  Elena Gerhardt,  Ludwig Weber  ... 
    Conductor:  Robert Heger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 42.
    Brahms, Wolf, Mahler: Lieder / Andreas Schmidt, Cord Garben
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 431649 Release Date: 06/01/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Gustav Mahler,  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Cord Garben,  Andreas Schmidt
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  • 43.
    Elisabeth Schwazkopf - 1915-2006
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 80273 Release Date: 01/16/2007   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Engelbert Humperdinck,  Franz Schubert,  Richard Strauss,  Walter Gieseking  ... 
    Performer:  Elisabeth Grümmer,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Geoffrey Parsons,  Walter Gieseking  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan,  Alceo Galliera,  Thurston Dart,  Josef Krips  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 44.
    Schumann, Wolf: Eichendorff Lieder / Pregardien, Gees
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 98235 Release Date: 10/10/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf,  Robert Schumann
    Performer:  Michael Gees,  Christoph Prégardien
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  • 45.
    Holnd Fstvl - A Dutch Miracle - Fifty Years - 1947-1997
    Label: Globe   Catalog: 6900 Release Date: 05/09/2006   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Rudolf Escher,  Richard Strauss,  Manuel de Falla  ... 
    Performer:  Renato Capecchi,  Teresa Berganza,  Giulietta Simionato,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini,  George Szell,  Jean Fournet,  Kiril Kondrashin  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hague Residentie Orchestra,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Chorus,  Danzi Woodwind Quintet  ... 
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  • 46.
    Wolf: Early Songs / Nico Van Der Meel, Dido Kuening
    Label: Globe   Catalog: 5149 Release Date: 05/09/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Dido Keuning,  Nico Van der Meel
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  • 47.
    Wolf: Italienisches Liederbuch, Goethe-lieder, Etc
    Label: Globe   Catalog: 6029 Release Date: 05/09/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Tom Krause,  Irwin Gage,  Elly Ameling,  Rudolf Jansen
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  • 48.
    Schubert, Berg, Wolf: Lieder / Stotijn, Breinl
    Label: Onyx   Catalog: 4009 Release Date: 04/11/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Alban Berg,  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Christianne Stotijn,  Joseph Breinl
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  • 49.
    Peter Anders Vol. II - Beethoven, Schumann, et al: Lieder
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 2167 Release Date: 10/01/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Richard Strauss,  Hugo Wolf,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Tiana Lemnitz,  Michael Raucheisen,  Peter Anders
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  • 50.
    Fischer-Dieskau - Salzburger Liederabende 1956-1965
    Label: Orfeo D'or   Catalog: 339050 Release Date: 05/06/2005   Number of Discs: 11
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Richard Strauss  ... 
    Performer:  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Gerald Moore,  Erik Werba,  Irmgard Seefried
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