Wolfgang Schäfer

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Wolfgang Schäfer (born 7 April 1945 in Staufen im Breisgau) is a German choral conductor and academic. He founded the Freiburger Vokalensemble, the BosArt Trio, and the Frankfurter Kammerchor.

Career[edit]

Schäfer studied music education, voice and choral conducting in Freiburg im Breisgau, and orchestral conducting in Stuttgart. He was a teacher at the Hochschule für Musik Freiburg from 1971 to 1982. He has been the artistic director of the Freiburger Vokalensemble, which he founded in 1971.[1]

In 1982 Schäfer was appointed professor for choral conducting at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Frankfurt am Main (short: HfMDK, Frankfurt University of Music and Performing Arts), succeeding Helmuth Rilling.[1] In that capacity he conducted both the choir and the chamber choir of the Hochschule. He performed concerts with the chamber choir of the MfMDK at the university and also in the Rhein-Main Region, such as 2007 in St. Martin, Idstein, a program of mostly psalm compositions, Das ist mir lieb (Psalm 116) by Heinrich Schütz, Warum ist das Licht gegeben dem Mühseligen by Brahms, Eli Eli (based on Psalm 22) of Georgius Bárdos, Bruckner's Os justi (Psalm 37:19–20), and Bach's Lobet den Herrn, alle Heiden (Psalm 117).[2] In 2008, after 26 years of teaching, he conducted in a farewell concert Schicksalslied of Brahms and Schubert's Mass in A flat major.[3]

Also in 1982 he was the director of the Frankfurter Kantorei, succeeding Kurt Thomas and Rilling. He conducted the choir until 1997. In 2008 he founded the Frankfurter Kammerchor. Schäfer has been a juror at international music competitions. He has been the artistic director of the annual Staufener Musikwoche in his hometown. Since his student days, Schäfer has also been a member of the musical comedy group BosArt Trio.[4]

In 1984 Schäfer conducted the premiere of the Mass of Kurt Hessenberg with the Frankfurter Kantorei in the studio of the Hessischer Rundfunk.[5]

In 1990 he recorded Telemann's cantata Die Tageszeiten with Mechthild Bach, Mechthild Georg, Hans Peter Blochwitz, Johannes Mannov, the Freiburger Vokalensemble and Collegium Musicum, the second commercial recording of the cantata.[6] In 2003 he recorded Telemann's Passion Das selige Erwägen des bittern Leiden und Sterbens Jesu Christi with Barbara Locher, Zeger Vandersteene, Stefan Dörr, Berthold Possemeyer, Jesus-Rene Schmidt, the Freiburger Vokalensemble and L'arpa festante, then probably the only recording of the work.[7]

After retiring from the Musikhochschule Frankfurt, Schäfer founded the Frankfurter Kammerchor, mostly formed by alumni of the Hochschule. He conducted the chamber choir in concerts in the Limburg Cathedral, St. Martin, Idstein, and the Stiftskirche, Stuttgart, among others. He designed a program for Advent which includes several settings of Ave Maria and Jan Sandström's Es ist ein Ros entsprungen.[8]

Awards[edit]

  • 1981: BBC competition "Let the Peoples Sing", first prize with the Freiburger Vokalensemble
  • 1984: Wettbewerb der Europäischen Rundfunkunion, first prize with the Freiburger Vokalensemble

Discography[edit]

Freiburger Vokalensemble

Frankfurter Kantorei

BosArt Trio

  • Unerhörte Meisterwerke. 1984
  • Ein Schluck aus dem Opernglas. 1987
  • Scherzo wie Watsche. 1991
  • Musik von A bis Zett. 1994
  • Insalata Mista. 1998
  • Die Fledermaus und das Phantom. 2000
  • Bach Blüten. 2001

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Wolfgang Schäfer (Choral Conductor)". bach-cantatas.com. 2008. Retrieved 18 November 2010. 
  2. ^ "Kammerchor der Musikhochschule". St. Martin, Idstein. 5 October 2007. Retrieved 26 November 2010. 
  3. ^ "Hochschulchor der HfMDK" (in German). Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Frankfurt am Main. 2010. Retrieved 22 November 2010. 
  4. ^ "In den Räben lässt sich’s läben" (in German). Badische Zeitung. 8 October 2009. Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  5. ^ "A Brief Autobiography By Kurt Hessenberg". cassandrarecords.com. 1990. Retrieved 22 November 2010. 
  6. ^ "Telemann Die Tageszeiten". Gramophone. 1990. Retrieved 22 November 2010. 
  7. ^ Robert Hugill (2003). "Telemann Passions Oratorium". musicweb-international.com. Retrieved 22 November 2010. 
  8. ^ "In dulci jubilo". St. Martin, Idstein. 2010. Retrieved 25 December 2011. 

External links[edit]