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About the composer Hans Pfitzner
Hans Erich Pfitzner (5 May 1869 - 22 May 1949) was a German composer and self-described anti-modernist. His best known work is the post-Romantic opera Palestrina, loosely based on the life of the great sixteenth-century composer Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina.Read more on Wikipedia
Pfitzner was born in Moscow, Russia, where his father played violin in a theater orchestra. The family returned to his father's native Frankfurt in 1872 when Pfitzner was two years old, and he always considered Frankfurt his home town. He received early instruction in violin from his father, and his earliest compositions were composed at age 11. In 1884 he wrote his first songs. From 1886 to 1890 he studied composition with Iwan Knorr and piano with James Kwast at the Hoch Conservatory in Frankfurt. (He later married Kwast's daughter Mimi Kwast, a grand-daughter of Ferdinand Hiller, after she had rejected the advances of Percy Grainger.) He taught piano and theory at the Koblenz Conservatory from 1892 to 1893. In 1894 he was appointed conductor at the Stadttheater in Mainz where he worked for a few months. These were all low-paying jobs, and Pfitzner was working as Erster (First) Kapellmeister with the Berlin Theater des Westens when he was appointed to a modestly prestigious post of opera director and head of the conservatory in Straßburg (Strasbourg) in 1908, when Pfitzner was almost forty.