Ignaz von Seyfried

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Ignaz von Seyfried. 1829 lithograph by Josef Kriehuber

Ignaz Joseph Ritter von Seyfried (15 August 1776 – 27 August 1841) was an Austrian musician, conductor and composer. He was born and died in Vienna. According to a statement in his handwritten memoirs[1] he was a pupil of both Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johann Albrechtsberger. He published Albrechtsberger's complete written works after his death. His own pupils included Franz von Suppé, Heinrich Wilhelm Ernst, Antonio Casimir Cartellieri, Joseph Fischhof and Eduard Marxsen.

As conductor[edit]

In his youth Seyfried served as the assistant conductor for Emanuel Schikaneder's opera troupe at the Theater auf der Wieden in Vienna, becoming musical director in 1797 and serving (in its new building, the Theater an der Wien) until 1826.[2] His memoirs offer accounts of the first production, under Schikaneder's auspices, of Mozart's The Magic Flute, as well as a curious anecdote concerning the composer's death a few weeks later; see Death of Mozart.[3]

In 1805, Seyfried conducted the première of the original version of Beethoven's Fidelio. Seyfried's memoirs also include some striking tales about Beethoven, and the informations he provides on Beethoven in the appendix to Studien im Generalbasse are "of great biographical value",[4] containing "everything what is known about the circumstances of the adored master and (are) authentic fact".[5] Also see Piano Concerto No. 3 (Beethoven) and Choral Fantasy (Beethoven).

As composer[edit]

Of his musical works, the Grove Dictionary says: "his versatility won him a unique place in Vienna's musical life; however, almost none of his music is marked by real originality or distinction."

See also[edit]


  1. ^ David J. Buch, "Three posthumous Reports concerning Mozart in his late Viennese Years", Eighteenth-Century Music 2/1, (Cambridge University Press, 2005), 127.
  2. ^ Grove
  3. ^ Excerpts from the memoirs as they concern Mozart are given in Deutsch 1965.
  4. ^ Honegger-Massenkeil, Große Lexikon der Musik, vol. VII (1987)
  5. ^ Henry Hugh Pierson (ed.). Ludwig van Beethoven. Studien im Generalbasse. New Edition. 1853


  • Deutsch, Otto Erich (1965) Mozart: A Documentary Biography. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.
  • Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, online edition. Copyright 2008 by Oxford University Press. Article "Ignaz Seyfried", written by Peter Branscombe.

External links[edit]