416 Pages
    by Routledge

    Originally published in 1936, as a second edition in 1948 and as an enlarged and third edition in 1982, Karl Geiringer’s biography of Brahms is generally regarded as one of the finest studies of the composer ever published in any language. It is based on the body of material in the archives of the Viennese Society of Friends, for which Karl Geiringer was curator from 1930-1938, and which contains more than a thousand letters written by and to Brahms. These letters, exchanged with family and with his famous contemporaries, reveal his loneliness, grim humour, loyalty, painful shyness and enthusiasm for the music of Beethoven and Schubert – moods that the self-effacing composer did not like to publicly display. Divided into sections on Brahms’s solitary, scholarly existence and his fruitful composing career – including examinations of rare first drafts – the biography relates how crises in Brahm’s personal life were translated into his music, and how he often managed to ignore or suppress them.

    Part 1: His Life 1. Father and Mother 2. Childhood and Youth 3. Seven Eventful Months 4. ‘Sturm und Drang’ 5. Detmold and Hamburg 6. At Home and Abroad 7. First Appointment in Vienna 8. ‘A German Requiem’ 9. Artistic Director of the ‘Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde’ 10. On the Summit 11. Old Friends and New 12. A Fruitful Autumn 13. Nearing the End Part 2: His Work 14. Brahm’s Life Work 15. Compositions for the Pianoforte 16. Compositions for the Organ 17. Chamber Music 18. Compositions for Orchestra 19. Songs for One, Two and Four Voices with Pianoforte Accompaniment 20. Smaller Choral Works 21. Large Choral Works Part 3: The Man and the Artist. Appendix I: Brahms Writes Letters Appendix II: Brahms as a Reader and Collector. 


    Karl Geiringer (1899-1989) was an Austrian-American musicologist, prolific author and Professor of Music at the University of California, Santa Barbara. 

    Original Review of Brahms: HIs Life and Work

    ‘As subtle and life-like a portrait of the most reserved of composers as we are ever likely to get.’ Desmond Shawe-Taylor

    ‘It is altogether a rare book, equally a product of fine scholarship, a splendid literary gift, and intimate feeling for his subject.’ Irving Kolodin

    ‘The main librarians who sought long and hard for copies of the book during its out-of-print years will be happy to have it back. Highly recommended’. Library Journal