A life marked by the fear of life – Hugo Distler (1908-1942): a biographical sketch by Jan Raas

by Jan Raas |Het ORGEL |Year 104 |(2008) |Issue 4
Jan Raas A life marked by the fear of life – Hugo Distler (1908-1942): a biographical sketch
HetORGEL 104 (2008), nr. 4, 4-11 [summary]
Hugo Distler (born 24 June, 1908) was raised by his grandparents. Hestudied at Leipzig conservatory with Günter Ramin an HermannGrabner, among others. These teachers remained important counselorsduring Distler’s whole career.On 1 January, 1931 Distler was named organist and director of churchmusic of the Jakobikirche in Lübeck. In particular theStellwagen organ in this church was artistically important for Distler.Distler’s work was determined by the ideals of theOrgelbewegung and the Singbewegung [Singing movement].From 1937 to 1940 Distler had a position at the Musikhochschule inStuttgart. In this period he composed many secular works. The last twoyears of his life, Distler worked in Berlin, as teacher at theMusikhochschule and as conductor of the Berliner Staats- und Domchor.On 1 November, 1942, Distler committed suicide.