Alexander Schmuller (1880-1933).

  • Profession: Violinist, conductor
  • Relation to Mahler: Organizer of the ‘International Chambermusic festival during the Mahler Festival’. Mahler Festival 1920 Amsterdam. In the small hall of the Amsterdam Royal Concertgebouw.
  • Correspondence with Mahler: 
  • Born: 05-12-1880 Mazyr (Mozyr), Belarus
  • Died: 29-03-1933 Amsterdam, the Netherlands. (aged 52)
  • Buried: 31-03-1933 Jewish Cemetery Muiderberg, the Netherlands. Grave C-75-64.

Violinist Alexander Schmuller, of Jewish descent, was born in Belorussian Mazyr (Mozyr). He has studied with Otakar Sevcik in Kiev and Prague between 1889 and 1900; from 1900 till 1904 he was a student of Jan Hrímalý in Moscow, and from 1904 till 1908 of Leopold Auer in Saint Petersburg. As an outstanding violin player he came into contact with composers such as Rimsky Korsakov and Glazunov.

In 1908 Schmuller accepted an appointment as teacher at the Stern’sche Konservatorium in Berlin. During his years in Germany he often performed with Max Reger. In 1914 he became a teacher at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. 

During the 1910’s and 20’s he regularly performed as violinist with the Amsterdam Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (RCO).

1915-1920. Left: Alexander Schmuller (1880-1933) and Willem Mengelberg (1871-1951).

13-05-1920. Mahler Festival 1920 Amsterdam: Gertrude Foerstel (in striped dress), Mathilde Mengelberg-Wubbe (1875-1943) (white hat), Alma Mahler (1879-1964) (dark hat with dark scarf), Arnold Schoenberg (1874-1951) (dark hat, pin and umbrella) and Mathilde Schoenberg. In front: Alexander Schmuller (1880-1933). S.S. Jan Pieterszoon Coen.

09-05-1920 and 11-05-1920. Mahler Festival 1920 Amsterdam. ‘International Chambermusic festival during the Mahler Festival’:

16-05-1920, 19-05-1920, 20-05-1920. Mahler Festival 1920 Amsterdam. ‘International Chambermusic festival during the Mahler Festival’:

As a guest conductor Alexander Schmuller (1880-1933) performed with the Amsterdam Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (RCO) in 1926 and 1927. From 1928 till 1930 he was conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic.

Schmuller’s repertoire was broad. It showed a preference for J.S. Bach and Max Reger, but also included recent works by Rudi Stephan, Milhaud, Respighi, Hindemith, Rudolf Mengelberg and others.

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