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Kurt Weill (1900-1950)

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Fact file
Year of birth1900
Year of death1950
NationalityGermany
Period20th century
Biography

Kurt Julian Weill (2nd March 1900 – 3rd April 1950) was a German composer, active from the 1920s in his native country and in his later years in the United States, where he fled the Nazi leadership in 1933 and later became a citizen. His work is tied together by a series of common threads: a concern for social justice, an aggressive pursuit of highly-regarded playwrights and lyricists as collaborators (notably Bertolt Brecht, with whom he developed productions such as The Threepenny Opera and The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny) and the ability to adapt to audience tastes no matter where he found himself. Despite the relative brevity of his life, his far-reaching career challenged the purity of preexisting musical styles, working across genres and geographical limitations. He leaves a body of work that comprises operas, ballets and stage works, as well as chamber music,orchestral pieces and concert works.

The 2nd March 2020 will mark 120 years since Weill’s birth in the German city of Dessau.

Kurt Weill © Bundesarchiv, Bild 146-2005-0119, CC-BY-SA 3.0
Kurt Weill
© Bundesarchiv, Bild 146-2005-0119, CC-BY-SA 3.0