Pater Hartmann von An der Lan Hochbrunn – Te Deum, Oratorio for 4 solo voices, chorus and orchestra
(b. Salurn, South Tyrol, 21 December 1863 – d. Munich, 6 December 1914)
The German National Library has 22 different names listed for the composer Pater Hartmann von An der Lan-Hochbrunn. The composer himself used many different versions of his own name during his lifetime, and contemporary publications were not consistent either. This can lead to some difficulty finding information.
Pater Hartmann was born Paul Eugen Josef von An der Lan-Hochbrunn in 1863 in Salorno, Italy. He received music lessons at the age of six and entered the Franciscan monastery in Salzburg when he was 15, taking the monastic name Hartmann (he took the name from the 12th century Bishop, Blessed Hartmann of Brixen). He studied organ and composition under Peter Singer (1810-1882) the last two years of Singer’s life. Singer was surely a large influence on Hartmann. Liszt called Singer the “Liszt of the organ” and many people traveled to see Singer play in Salzburg at the monastery, especially on his invention the “Pansymphonikon” (a sort of combination harmonium/organ/piano with a double keyboard). He continued his studies with Josef Pembaur the Elder in Innsbruck. Hartmann himself worked at organists in various monasteries, and also became a music teacher and the head of a music school before turning his own direction of composition mainly to oratorios (although he also wrote various masses and smaller keyboard works). He became a member of the Academy of Santa Cecilia in 1898, and the following year was invited by Cardinal Lucido Maria Parocchi to compose an oratorio in honor of the 1900 Jubilee. This began his passion for writing oratorios: He aimed chiefly to remove theatrics and melodrama from religious music and to attempt to create a more approachable music to further religious elevation and edification. He traveled quite extensively to conduct his works himself – he was welcomed, for example, in Carnegie Hall in NY, in St. Petersburg, in Rome, and of course all over Europe. His popularity seemed fueled in large part to “curiosity” – Most reviews of his music and performances make references to his conducting of the orchestra in Franciscan garb. He died in the year 1914 at the age of 51 in Munich.
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