February 24, 1884
Goldwörth, Upper Austria, Austria
|Died||September 19, 1957
Honolulu, Hawaii, United States
|Organization||Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Manhattan School of Music
|Spouse(s)||Alice Plaut (1884–1972)|
|Children||Alice Kortschak (1909–1995)
Hugo P. Kortschak (1911–1983)
Hugo Kortschak (28 February 1884 – 19 September 1957) was an Austrian-born American violinist and a member of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra from 1907 until 1914 (serving as assistant concertmaster from 1910 until 1914), founding member of the Berkshire String Quartet and Dean of Music at Yale University. His son was the plant physiologist Hugo P. Kortschak.
The Berkshire String Quartet was founded when music patroness Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge persuaded Kortschak to move his quartet from Chicago to Pittsfield, Massachusetts, where its members could focus exclusively on chamber music. In his youth Kortschak was a member of the Pozniak-Trio founded by the Polish Pianist Bronislaw Pozniak (de). Kortschak was an owner of several fine violins, including:
- In 1914: a Joseph Guarnerius violin, once the property of the Crown Treasurer of Spain; and
- Period of ownership unknown: Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesù, 1739c
- From 1925 to 1957: a 1698 Stradivarius violin, once owned by Joseph Joachim
Kortschak was a key figure in organizing the Berkshire Chamber Music Festival founded by Coolidge. The original Berkshire String Quartet disbanded sometime after 1941.
Kortschak is a recipient of the Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge Medal for "eminent services to chamber music."
- "Hugo Kortschak". geni.com. 11 November 2016. Retrieved 1 January 2017.
- Obituaries: "Hugo Kortschak", September 20, 1957
New York Times
Los Angeles Times, pg. 18
Honolulu Advertiser, pg. B7, col. 1
- Baker's Biographical Dictionary of Musicians (Kortschak is in Vol. 3 of 6), Macmillan; Schirmer
6th ed., Slonimsky (ed.) (1978); OCLC 4426869
7th ed., Slonimsky (ed.) (1984); OCLC 10574930
8th ed., Slonimsky (ed.) (1992); OCLC 24246972
- Biographical Dictionary of Twentieth-Century Classical Musicians, Nicolas Slonimsky (ed), Schirmer (1997); OCLC 36111932
- Biography Index, H.W. Wilson Co.; ISSN 0006-3053
Vol. 1: Jan. 1946–Jul. 1949 (1949)
Vol. 4: Sep. 1955–Aug. 1958 (1960)
- The New Grove Dictionary of American Music, (Mata is in Vol. 3 of 4), H. Wiley Hitchcock & Stanley Sadie (eds.), Macmillan Publishers (1986); (see Oxford Music Online); OCLC 13184437, OCLC 230202868
- "The Violin I Use, and Why I Like It", The Violinist, Chicago: Violinist Publishing Company, Vol. 17, No. 3, June 1914, pg. 25,; OCLC 1769147