Emigre composer Berthold Goldschmidt (1903-1996) died in London at the age of 93. He had lived at the same ground floor flat since fleeing Germany.
Schönberg was one of many composers (including Ernst Toch and Igor Stravinsky) who ended up in the warm climate of California, and like many others he found it difficult to adjust at first to a life outside Europe.Continue reading
During World War II, many Jews defied their Nazi oppressors by actively taking part in an underground war of resistance. This partisan warfare, carried out by clandestine forces operating inside enemy territory, was widespread in the forests and marshlands of Eastern Europe.Continue reading
The opening motif of Beethoven's 5th Symphony became a powerful symbol for the Allied forces. Corresponding in Morse code to the letter 'V' for Victory, it was most famously made by Winston Churchill forming a 'V' with his fingers.Continue reading
The 1920s heralded a ‘Golden-Age’ of German cabaret (Kabarett), with clubs such as Max Reinhardt’s Schall und Rauch (Sound and Smoke) and Trude Hesterberg’s Wilde Bühne (Wild Stage) in Berlin, and Die Elf Scharfrichter (Eleven Executioners) in Munich offering hedonistic, avant-garde, risqué entertainment.Continue reading
Composer Arnold Schönberg (1874-1951) together with Berg and Webern, are known as the Second Viennese School. His revolutionary musical technique of dodecaphony (twelve tones) was his signature creation.
Emigre composer Berthold Goldschmidt (1903-1996) died in London at the age of 93. He had lived at the same ground floor flat since leaving Germany to flee the Nazis in October 1935.
Marxist composer Hanns Eisler (1898-1962) was in Vienna in January 1933 when Hitler became German Chancellor. Eisler stayed true to his Communist ideals, fleeing Nazi Germany in the 1930s and America in the 1940s.
When the war broke out Joseph Schmidt (1904-1942) fled to France then retreated to Switzerland. Although in possession of an American visa and well known, he was interned and, owing to a lack of medical attention, he died on 16 November 1942.
During World War II, many European Jews defied their Nazi oppressors by actively resisting. This partisan warfare, carried out by clandestine, irregular forces operating inside enemy territory, was particularly widespread in the dense forests and marshlands of Eastern Europe.
Poet and partisan fighter Shmerke Kaczerginski (1908-1954) was a collector of Yiddish Shoah song. He was sent to the Vilna ghetto in early 1942 where he crafted songs to console prisoners and encourage resistance.
Songs of the French resistance were collected by Paul Arma with his wife Edmée to rescue from obscurity the numerous songs that were written as acts of resistance during World War II, and to recognise the efforts made and dangers faced by their creators.
In September 1939, the British government established tribunals to evaluate the potential security risk of all UK resident German and Austrian nationals.
For many Jewish composers, the rise of Nazism presented a stark choice: stay and submit to an unknown future in an increasingly hostile regime or go into exile.
The music education of Hungarian-Austrian composer György Ligeti (1923-2006) was interrupted when he was sent to a forced labour brigade by the Horthy regime.
Kurt Huber (1893-1943) was a member of the Munich-based resistance group, die Weiße Rose. His execution in 1943 sent shock-waves throughout Europe.
With the outbreak of war, French jazz floundered, but in December 1940, Charles Delaunay organised a jazz festival to revive the genre. It sold out in 24 hours.