Vogel, Wladimir


Vogel, Wladimir

Ritmica Ostinata for orchestra

SKU: 4059 Category:


Wladimir Vogel – Ritmica Ostinata (1932)

(b. Moscow, 29. February 1896 – d. Zürich, 19. June 1984)

Wladimir Vogel was born in Moscow on February 29, 1896 to a Russian mother and a German merchant-tailor father. He grew up in Moscow, showing an inclination for the piano and enthusiasm for the music of Alexander Scriabin, whose piano recitals he attended between 1912 and 1914. Due to his father’s nationality, Wladimir and his family were interned for the duration of World War I. In 1918 he moved to Berlin, where he studied composition, first privately with Heinz Tiessen, and from 1921 to 1924 in Ferruccio Busoni’s class at the Prussian Academy of the Arts. During the same period and while developing his personal modernist idiom, he entered several progressive artistic circles which were active in the city: the conductor Hermann Scherchen’s Neue Musikgesellschaft, Herwarth Walden’s expressionist magazine Der Sturm, and the Novembergruppe. Soon, he also developed an increasingly pro-socialist orientation, becoming associated with the Berlin workers’ music movement and the Society of Friends of New Russia.

These activities, as well as the Jewish roots on his mother’s side, led to his widely respected work being eventually labelled ‘degenerate’ by the Nazi regime, forcing Vogel to flee Germany in 1933 and settle in Switzerland. Despite his not being allowed to work in the country until he became a Swiss citizen in 1954, his reputation attracted students such as Rolf Liebermann and Einojuhani Rautavaara, whom he taught privately. He also continued to write as well as promote modernist music, by being active in the International Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM) and organising the international twelve-tone music pre-conference in Osilina in 1949. Vogel received several honours, including membership in the Accademia Filarmonica and the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome, and the Akademie der Künste in Berlin. He was decorated with the Berliner Kunstpreis für Musik in 1960, the Musikpreis der Stadt Zürich in 1970, and the award of the Schweizerischer Tonkünstlerverein in 1972. He died in Zurich on June 19, 1984.


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