Elbphilharmonie Erklärt: Hanns Eisler

Elbphilharmonie Explains: Hanns Eisler

Eisler expert Albrecht Dümling on the extraordinary composer, his contradictions and on music for a better world.

Between Communism and Hollywood, twelve-tone music and workers’ songs, revolution and resignation: Hanns Eisler’s life and work oscillate between extremes. The composer was never satisfied with writing music for its own sake. He wanted more. He wanted music for a better world. In the 1930s, Eisler went into exile on the west coast of the USA and began composing film music. After returning to Europe, he became the GDR’s flagship composer. Eisler doesn’t fit into any category, but he does fit into our age. »His music is very topical«, claims the Eisler expert Albrecht Dümling.

As co-founder of the International Hanns Eisler Society, the musicologist ensured, on Eisler’s 100th birthday in 1998, that his music also returned to California. When he looks back at the numerous Eisler projects of the last few decades, he thinks: Eisler did it. His music was proven right. It was music for a better world.

»Eisler wanted to write music that amateurs could understand, and that experts still found interesting.«

Albrecht Dümling

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