Hartmann, Karl Amadeus: The complete music autographs from the bequest of the composer
Karl Amadeus Hartmann (August 2, 1905 – December 5, 1963) is one of the most significant composers of Munich in the 20th century. As initiator of the still ongoing concert series ‘musica viva’ of the Bavarian Broadcasting Corporation (‘Bayerischer Rundfunk’) he is a key person for the ’Neue Musik’.
His compositional opus ranks among the great creations of music history. The era of the twenties (futurism, dadaism, Jazz), intensive studies of the ’New Viennese School’ (Schönberg, Berg, Webern) and biographic moments – such as the painful period of the ’inner emigration’ during the period of National Socialism and the deep shock by the experience of war – had influence in a highly emotional work.
Hartmann, who came from an appreciative- of-art family, started with studies at the State Academy of Music in Munich. Later he was a student of Hermann Scherchen and Anton Webern. In 1945 he became dramatic advisor in music at the Bavarian State Opera and remained faithful to the city throughout his life despite a range of offers. Not only because of his commitment for the ’musica viva’, he was in close contact with the important figures of musical life and the art world of the last century. Concerning his style of composition, he writes (in: Kleine Schriften, Mainz 1965):
‘I will not bother about the too variant contemporary trends. Above all, I would like to write in a way that people understand me – every note should be felt and every tiny little break has to be breathed deeply. […] An artist cannot live for the moment without having spoken. If my music lately often was called confessional music, I consider this just as a confirmation of my intention. It was important for me to communicate my attitude to life, which aims at humanity.’
On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the death of Karl Amadeus Hartmann in 2013, the Bavarian State Library has digitized the copyright-protected music autographs from the Hartmann-estate and makes them accessible to the public as part of the digital library, with courtesy of the Hartmann-family.