Mourning Hans Zender

Breitkopf & Härtel mourns the death of composer Hans Zender. After a long illness, he passed away Tuesday night 22 October 2019 in his home in Meersburg aged 82. Since 1988, Zender has regularly entrusted us with his works. We look back gratefully on the continuously close collaboration with one of the major artists of our time. His amicable advice will be greatly missed.

With Zender, Contemporary Music loses one of its most remarkable minds – as an essayist, a profound, sharp-witted intellect and tireless admonisher; as a conductor, a committed, highly competent mediator not only of complex contemporary scores, but also of music from all epochs meaningful to him; and as a composer, despite all aesthetic stringency, a successful seeker on the fine line between tradition and progress. Works such as the oratorio “Shir Hashirim”, the opera “Don Quijote de la Mancha” (most recently in Frankfurt in 2016) and the composed interpretation “Schuberts Winterreise” are major milestones in the current discourse.

Until the very end, we were connected by working on scheduled works such as the second, extended edition of his comprehensive volume of writings “Die Sinne denken”, the new version of the ensemble work “33 Veränderungen über 33 Veränderungen” (on Beethoven’s “Diabelli-Variationen”), created in early summer of this year, as well as two works from the mid-1980s, published in our catalogue only recently – the opera “Stephen Climax” and the solo cantata “Die Wüste hat zwölf Ding”.

Our commitment to Hans Zender’s outstanding oeuvre will always remain a matter of course.  

Photo © 2009 by Wolfram Lamparter, SWR