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Hermann Levi Edit Profile

conductor , director

Hermann Levi was a Musical director.

Background

Hermann Levi was born on November 7, 1839 in Giessen, Germany.

Education

He was educated at Giessen and Mannheim, and came under Vincenz Lachner's notice.

From 1855 to 1858 Levi studied at the Leipzig conservatorium, and after a series of travels which took him to Paris.

Career

In 1859 Levi became musical director at Saarbrücken, and in 1861 conductor of the German opera at Rotterdam, from which city he was summoned in 1864 to Carlsruhe, where in his capacity as court kapellmeister he aroused general attention by his masterly conducting of the "Meistersinger".

In 1872 Levi received the appointment of court kapellmeister at Munich; and it was his thoroughly conscientious and excellent work here—notably his production of "Tristan and Isolde" in Nov. , 1881—that induced Richard Wagner to select him as the conductor of "Parsifal" at the Bayreuth Music Festival of 1882. Appointed "General-Musikdirektor" at Munich in 1894, he resigned this position in 1896 owing to ill health, and was pensioned by the government.

As the foremost director of his time, Levi conducted the musical performances during the Bismarck-Feier and also on the occasion of the tricentenary celebration of the birth of Orlando di Lasso. He was the first to produce the trilogy "Der Ring der Nibelungen" after its performance at Bayreuth in 1876; and his masterly interpretation of the Wagnerian dramas contributed to make Munich for many years a permanent musical center for these works. Levi was a convert to Christianity.

Achievements

  • Hermann Levi, who directed it in 1872–90, was a highly regarded conductor of the music of Wagner, Johannes Brahms, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.