Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Walter Trampler

It seems odd that in the space of just three days, I would be writing about another violist. The other day it was William Primrose - now, it's Walter Trampler. Not that I resent them in any way, though it's annoyingly coincidental. Trampler was born in Germany on August 25, 1915 (Heifetz was 18 years old.) He became famous for playing the viola as well as the viola d' amore and for having been married four times. Trampler studied violin with his father, a violinist in the Munich Opera Orchestra, from age 6. I don't know when he switched to the viola, but he did, early in his career. He made his debut as a violinist with the Beethoven concerto in 1933, at the age of 18. He attended the State Academy of Music in Munich up to 1934. However, at age 17, he was already the violist of the Strub String Quartet - a very obscure ensemble, as far as I know. Finally, Trampler ended up as Principal violist of the Berlin Radio Orchestra. He came to the U.S. in 1939, concertizing extensively, recording, and teaching at many major music schools, including Juilliard and Yale. One of his first jobs in the U.S. was as a violinist in the Boston Symphony. He was also one of the founding members of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. He was a champion of contemporary music, but I could not find any videos of his on YouTube. Trampler died on September 27, 1997, at age 82.

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