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Rudi Stephan (Composer)

Born: 29th July 1887, Worms, Germany

Died: 29th September 1915, Ternopil Oblast, Ukraine

Nationality: German

Rudi Stephan was a German composer of great promise who, shortly before the First World War, was considered one of the leading talents among his generation. He died in the war aged 28.

Stephan was born at Worms, Grand Duchy of Hesse. He became a composition pupil of Bernhard Sekles at the Hoch Conservatory in Frankfurt and of Heinrich Schwartz and Rudolf Louis in Munich, where he settled after completing his studies in 1908. He left only a few works: his liking for pointedly neutral titles along the lines of 'Music for ...' has caused him to be seen as a forerunner of the 'New Objectivity' of the post-war era, but his music is in fact in a hyper-expressive late-Romantic idiom which has more plausibly been seen by some as a kind of proto-Expressionism.

Further Reading: Stephan

 Interview, Ian Bostridge on Requiem: The Pity of War

The tenor talks to Katherine about his recent recording of songs by Mahler, George Butterworth, Rudi Stephan and Kurt Weill with Antonio Pappano, released at the end of October on Warner Classics.

 Recording of the Week, Requiem: The Pity of War from Ian Bostridge and Antonio Pappano

The tenor and pianist join forces for a programme of Butterworth, Rudi Stephan, Kurt Weill and Mahler to commemorate the centenary of Armistice Day next month.

All Genres: Stephan



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