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GUSTAV ALBERT LORTZING (18o1-1851)

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Originally appearing in Volume V17, Page 12 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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GUSTAV ALBERT LORTZING (18o1-1851), German composer, was born at Berlin on the 23rd of October 18or. Both his parents were actors, and when he was nineteen the son began to play youthful lover at the theatres of Dusseldorf and Aachen, sometimes also singing in small tenor or baritone parts. His first opera Ali Pascha von Jannina appeared in 1824, but his fame as a musician rests chiefly upon the two operas Der Wildschiitz (1842) and Czar and Zimmermann (1837). The latter, although now regarded as one of the masterpieces of German comic opera, was received with little enthusiasm by the public of Leipzig. Subsequent performance in Berlin, however, provoked such a tempest of applause that the opera was soon placed on all the stages of Germany. It was translated into English, French, Swedish, Danish, Dutch, Bohemian, Hungarian and Russian. Der Wildschiitz was based on a comedy of Kotzebue, and was a satire on the unintelligent and exaggerated admiration for the highest beauty in art expressed by the bourgeois gentilhomme. Of his other operas it is only necessary to note Der Pole and sein Kind, produced shortly after the Polish insurrection of 1831, and Undine (1845). Lortzing died at Berlin on the 21st of January 1851.
End of Article: GUSTAV ALBERT LORTZING (18o1-1851)
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