Peter Ronnefeld

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Peter Ronnefeld (front) in the Kiel Council Assembly (1963)

Peter Ronnefeld (born January 26, 1935 in Dresden , † August 6, 1965 in Kiel ) was a German composer and conductor .

Live and act

Peter Ronnefeld came from a family of musicians: his father was a violist in the Dresden Staatskapelle , his mother's brother played the violin in the RIAS Symphony Orchestra. In 1950 Ronnefeld finished attending the Waldorf School in Dresden .

After taking piano and composition lessons at an early age in Dresden, he studied piano with Hans-Erich Riebensahm and composition with Boris Blacher from 1950 to 1954 at the Musikhochschule Berlin , where Aribert Reimann was a fellow student. During his time in Berlin, Ronnefeld lived with his cousin Matthias Koeppel . As early as 1949 he wrote a small suite for orchestra, which premiered a year later in Berlin. In 1954 Ronnefeld continued his studies at the Paris Conservatoire with the pianist Yvonne Lefébure and with the composer Olivier Messiaen . He also took conducting courses in Siena and in Hilversum with Paul van Kempen .

In 1956 Ronnefeld taught at the Mozarteum in Salzburg , where the writer Thomas Bernhard studied drama and directing. In the short opera Die Nachtausgabe , composed especially for the course participants by Ronnefeld , Bernhard took on the speaking role of a guard. In 1958 Ronnefeld was first assistant to Herbert von Karajan at the Vienna State Opera and then Kapellmeister from October 1959. Ronnefeld became chief conductor in Bonn in 1961 and general music director at the Kiel Opera House in 1963 .

As a composer, Ronnefeld wrote about twenty works, his most extensive and best known is the three-act opera Die Ameise (written 1959–1961). Richard Bletschacher wrote the libretto . Ronnefeld himself conducted the premiere on October 21, 1961 at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Düsseldorf under the direction of Wolfgang Liebeneiner . A second version was performed posthumously on September 18, 1965 in Kiel under the direction of Gerd Albrecht . Ronnefeld adapted a four-movement suite from the opera , which he himself premiered on April 7, 1965 in Frankfurt am Main with the Hessischer Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra .

Ronnefeld sat down as a conductor, especially for new music , among other things, he conducted the first performance of the fluctuations of Isang Yun and played it for the record one. For Bernd Alois Zimmermann's opera The Soldiers , he was scheduled to conduct the premiere. In 1964 he conducted the world premiere of the opera Faust III by the Danish composer Niels Viggo Bentzon (opera based on Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Franz Kafka and James Joyce) in Kiel . On May 9, 1965, he conducted the world premiere of the oratorio Wohin Op. 41 by Heinz Friedrich Hartig with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau as soloists. He recorded Mozart works with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra , and a recording of Zar and Zimmermann by Albert Lortzing at the Vienna Volksoper .

In the summer of 1965 he was studying Aribert Reimann's first opera Ein Traumspiel when he fell seriously ill and died a short time later.

Peter Ronnefeld's works were initially published in Edition Modern Wewerka and in 2011 were taken over by the stage and music publisher G. Ricordi & Co. Munich. The estate and archive have been with the Berlin Academy of the Arts since 2005.

His son Matthias Ronnefeld (* 1959; † 1986) was also a composer. The graves of Peter and Matthias Ronnefeld are in the Grinzinger Friedhof (1B-40) in Vienna.

Gravesite Peter and Matthias Ronnefeld

Works (selection)

Stage works

  • Opera in three acts Die Ameise (1959–1961), premier October 21, Deutsche Oper am Rhein Düsseldorf; 2nd version, premiered posthumously on September 18, 1965 in Kiel , conductor Gerd Albrecht
    • from it: four-movement suite for orchestra, premier April 7th, 1965 in Frankfurt am Main , Hessischer Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra, conductor Peter Ronnefeld
  • Opera piccola in five acts Die Nachtausgabe , premiered August 30, 1956 in Salzburg , re-performed in 1987 in Vienna , 2014 in Dresden.
  • Ballet Peter Schlemihl , premiered April 10, 1956 in Hildesheim
  • Ballet Die Spirale , premiered in 1962 in Hanover

Orchestral works

  • Small Suite for Orchestra, 1949, premiered 1950 in Berlin , RIAS Youth Orchestra
  • Concertino for flute, clarinet, horn, bassoon and strings, premiered 1951 in Berlin
  • Symphony 52 , premiere 1953 in Bayreuth

Chamber music and songs

  • Five Songs in Autumn, Opus 3
  • Four lullabies, 1955
  • Violin Sonata, premiered in Braunschweig in 1951
  • Deux Nocturnes, for cello and piano, premiered 1974 in Paris
  • Quaternary for choir, Opus 4 and Opus 5, 1958, WP 1959 in Vienna



  • Jubilee Edition of the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie , CD 1, contains the movements 3 + 4 from the orchestral suite for Die Ameise (recording 1976, conductor Christof Prick ), edel , 1999
  • CD edition of the Isang Yun Society (contains fluctuations from Isang Yun, directed by Ronnefeld)


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ DIE ZEIT , issue No. 33/1965
  2. ^ German first edition in Dresden: The "Night Edition" by Peter Ronnefeld , published by Neue Musikzeitung , October 8, 2014