Ferdinand Kauer

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Ferdinand Kauer (born January 18, 1751 in Kleintajax near Znaim , † April 13, 1831 in Vienna ) was an Austrian composer and conductor.

As the son of a school teacher from Tyrnau in western Slovakia , he began studying medicine. Without finishing this, he moved to Vienna and from then on devoted himself exclusively to music . At the beginning he made a living from piano lessons and studied music on the side. At the Leopoldstädter Theater of Karl von Marinelli he became Kapellmeister and first violinist in 1795 and also took over the management of the singing school .

In the course of his life he created over 200 operas and singspiele , such as "Das Donauweibchen" (1798) and other compositions, such as over 20 masses, requiems , symphonies , quartets, concerts and the like. Kauer's “New Hungarian Dances” are the earliest documents for string ensembles in the history of Verbunkos music and were written on the occasion of the coronation of Emperor Franz I as King of Hungary in 1792.

Despite Kauer's great musical productivity, he became impoverished from 1820 onwards. When the Danube flooded on March 1, 1830, his apartment was also flooded and all of his work records were destroyed. A year later he died a beggar.

In his honor, Rudolfsheim-Fünfhaus (15th district) in Vienna was named Kauergasse . Kauer is considered the role model for the character of the " Poor Minstrel " by Franz Grillparzer . Spielmanngasse in the 20th district of Brigittenau has been named after him indirectly since 1968 .


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