Wolfgang Schneiderhan (violinist)
|Wolfgang Eduard Schneiderhan|
Schneiderhan was born in Vienna. After briefly studying with Otakar Ševčík in Pisek, he studied with Julius Winkler in Vienna. At age 10 he publicly performed Bach's Chaconne in D minor. The next year he made his debut in Copenhagen playing the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto. He lived in England for some time from 1929, where he appeared in concerts with artists such as Maria Jeritza, Feodor Chaliapin, Jan Kiepura and Paul Robeson.
He returned to Vienna to become the first Concertmaster of the Vienna Symphony Orchestra from 1933 to 1937, and from 1937 to 1951 led the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. He nevertheless maintained his career as a soloist in concerts and recordings.
He held teaching posts in Salzburg, Vienna and Lucerne. In 1956 he founded the Lucerne Festival Strings together with Rudolf Baumgartner. He gave the 1959 premiere of his friend Karl Amadeus Hartmann's revised Concerto funèbre.
Schneiderhan was married to the soprano Irmgard Seefried from 1948 until her death in 1988; they had three daughters together, including actress Mona Seefried (born 1957). He died in his native Vienna in 2002, aged 86. His nephew, also named Wolfgang Schneiderhan, was Chief of Staff of the German Bundeswehr from 2002 to 2009.