Persons related to Chopin Persons related to Chopin

Ferdynand Hiller

Ferdynand Hiller

Ferdynand Hiller

*24 X 1811 Frankfurt n. Menem, †11 V 1885 Kolonia

Ferdinand Hiller, German composer, pianist and pedagogue. He studied with A. Schmitt and J. N. Hummel in Veimar (1825-27). He gave concerts in Vienna (where he met Beethoven and Schubert) and in 1828-35 stayed in Paris where he made friendships with the Parisian music society - with Cherubini, Meyerbeer, Rossini and Halevy and also Berlioz, Liszt, Kalkbrenner and Chopin and also other artists.

He played on the first Chopin's concert in Paris on 25th of February 1832. On 15th of December 1833 he performed Bach's Concerto for 3 pianos together with Chopin and Liszt. Chopin in a letter to Woyciechowski from 12th of December 1831 called him "a boy with great talent, full of poetry, passion and spirit" [chłopcem z wielkim talentem, pełnym poezji, ognia i ducha człowiekiem].

The only one extant authograph manuscript of a letter from Chopin to Hiller from 2nd of August 1832 (regarded missing) is kept within the set of Hiller's documents in Stadtarchiv in Cologne.

On 30th of June 1833 Chopin, Liszt and Franchomme wrote a letter to Hiller in which Liszt asked if Hiller had known Chopin's wonderful etudes and Chopin added that he'd love to steel from Liszt his way of performing Chopin's own pieces.

Hiller responded that "noone ever thouched the keys as Chopin did" [nikt nigdy klawiszów nie dotykał].

In May 1834 Chopin went with Hiller to Aachen for the Music Festival of the Rhinelands. They went to Düsseldorf with Mendelssohn and than Chopin and Hiller took a trip down the Rhine to Koblenz. On 22nd of February 1835 during the special Hiller's concert in the Erard salon they played together Hiller's Duo, Op. 135.

The letter to Chopin from the beginning of 1833 Hiller finnished in such words: moja perło, mój klejnocie, uwielbienie mego serca [my perl, my jewel, affection of my heart], and on 13th of December 1848: myślę zawsze o Panu [Tobie] jako o jednym z ludzi, których kochałem najbardziej [I always think of you as one of the people I loved the most]. Both musicians were very close friends. Chopin dedicated to Hiller his Nocturnes, Op. 15.

Liszt, after doing to Switzerland invited Hiller and Chopin for a trip to Geneve together in spring 1836. But in 1836 Hiller was not in Paris any more. He went to Italy and in 1842 came back to Germany and in 1843-44 he was the director of Gewandhaus in Leipzig, afterwords he moved to Dresden, and from 1847 in Düsseldorf where - after Chopin's death - he organized a special ceremony during which Hiller's poetry was being declaimed with the accompaniament of Chopin's music. Afterwords Hiller moved to Cologne and became an organizer of the Music Festival of the Rhinelands.

He wrote operas (i.a. Die Katakomben), piano concerto in f sharp minor, and violin concerto and some chamber music. He was regarded an exceptional interpreter of Mozart's music, great organizer, intellectual - but as a conservatist he remained for a long time in the opposition to Wagner and Liszt.


Dedicated manuscripts:

Mazurka in F sharp minor, Op. 6 No. 1; Presentation autograph

Dedicated first editions:

Nocturnes Op. 15 (French, M. Schlesinger)
Nocturnes Op. 15 (German, Breitkopf & Härtel)
Nocturnes Op. 15 (English, Wessel & Co.)

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