Notes and Editorial Reviews
Born in Dresden in 1926, Wolfgang Marschner, a remarkable violinist, composer, conductor, and teacher, comes from a distinguished musical family. One of his ancestors was Heinrich Marschner (1795-1861), the most important composer of German opera between Weber and Wagner. At four, Wolfgang attended the Staatskapelle Dresden orchestra school. Five years later, he made his debut performing Tartini's Devil's Trill Sonata. At fourteen, he entered the Mozarteum in Salzburg, where his composition, Divertimento for String Quartet was premiered. At seventeen, in the midst of the Second World War, he was conscripted into the army. He resumed his studies after the war with Erich Rohn (concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic). He commenced his career with the Hanover Opera House Orchestra, as the concertmaster, soloist and second conductor. More engagements followed with the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and Dresden Staatskapelle. At 21, he was named concertmaster of the Cologne WDR Orchestra where he was the soloist in the German premiere of Walton's Violin Concerto, and conducted Oscar Straus' operetta, Ein Waltzertraum. He devoted himself to performing the Schoenberg and Berg Violin Concertos and premiered chamber works and violin concertos by Luigi Nono, Winfried Zillig, Hans Schmidt-Isserstedt, Bernd Alois Karl Amadeus Hartmann, Eduard Steuermann and Igor Stravinsky. He is equally prolific as a composer of several symphonies, concertos, chamber and solo violin works. Marschner became a professor at the Folkwang Hochschule in Essen at 26, he later taught at the Cologne Musikhochschule. He has been a guest teacher in Tokyo and has given masterclasses all over the world. He founded the Deutsche Spohr Akademie masterclasses and the Marschner Festival Hinterzarten in the Black Forest. He was a juror in many competitions and established the Jacobus Stainer and the Louis Spohr International Violin Competitions.