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Austrian composer, conductor and teacher Friedrich Cerha was born in Vienna on 17 February 1926. He began to play the violin at six, and started composing when he was eight. After an eventful time in World War II, being conscripted as a child soldier, working in the resistance, deserting (twice) and hiding in the mountains, he was able to study at the Vienna Music Academy and at Vienna University. He's best known for completing Alban Berg's Lulu, but also wrote several operas of his own, and founded the ensemble Die Reihe which helped to spread contemporary music in Austria.
Friedrich Cerha died in Vienna on 14 February 2023, aged ninety-six.
Echoes of Oblivion by Robert McCarney - The Departed
Classical music news. March 2023 Newsletter - Our March 2023 PDF newsletter has just been published, along with some extra classical music news and our February 2023 classical music obituaries
Ensemble. Disturbingly insinuating - David Wilkins attends the première of Friedrich Cerha's 'Der Riese vom Steinfeld' and speaks to the principal singer, Thomas Hampson, about the opera