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Ludwig Hoelscher (b1907)

Ludwig Hoelscher’s father, a jeweller and amateur violinist, encouraged him to take up the cello at the age of six so that he could play in the family quartet. From the age of ten he took instruction in Cologne, Munich, Leipzig and Berlin from a number of important pedagogues including the ‘twin peaks’ of the Dresden school, Hugo Becker and Julius Klengel, as well as from Wilhelm Lamping. After receiving the Mendelssohn Prize from the Berlin Musikhochschule Hoelscher befriended pianist Elly Ney in 1932; with violinist Wilhelm Stross they formed the Elly Ney Trio. Later collaborations saw him work alongside various eminent German musicians including Max Strub, Wilhelm Furtwängler and Walter Gieseking.

After joining the NSDAP in 1937, Hoelscher became a faithful servant of the Nazi party, favoured by Hitler and rewarded by a number of high-profile appointments including at the Berlin Musikhochshule and the Mozarteum in Salzburg. Although after the war his reputation suffered as a result of his Nazi associations, his career continued to be successful. He was for many years an instrumental professor in Stuttgart and gave premières of works by a number of composers, including Hindemith, Fortner, Pfitzner and Henze. In 1953 he was made an honorary member of the Beethovenhaus in Bonn.




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