Hugo Wolf

Hugo Wolf (hōō´gō vôlf), 1860–1903, Austrian composer; studied at the Vienna Conservatory. From 1883 to 1887 he wrote musical criticism for the Vienna Salonblatt. As a composer he first gained attention when his songs began to be published in 1889. Wolf's more than 300 Lieder place him with Schubert and Schumann as a supreme master of that form. He wrote many songs with texts by Goethe, Mörike, Eichendorff, and other German poets, but he also used foreign lyrics in translation, as in his Spanisches Liederbuch (1889) and Italienisches Liederbuch (Part I, 1891; Part II, 1896). Wolf borrowed Wagner's chromatic harmony and symphonic conception of accompaniment, but in his songs he transformed them into his own miniaturistic idiom. He also wrote an opera, Der Corregidor (1896; based on Alarcón's El Sombrero de tres picos), as well as choral works and some chamber music. In 1897 he had a mental breakdown and later at his own request was committed to a state asylum, where he died.

See biographies by E. Newman (1966) and F. Walker (2d. ed. 1968).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2014, The Columbia University Press.

Selected full-text books and articles on this topic

The Songs of Hugo Wolf
Eric Sams; Gerald Moore.
Methuen, 1962
Texts of the Solo Songs of Hugo Wolf
Henry S. Drinker; Hugo Wolf.
Association of American Colleges, 1949
Hugo Wolf and His Morike Songs
Susan Youens.
Cambridge University Press, 2000
The Music Criticism of Hugo Wolf
Henry Pleasants; Hugo Wolf.
Holmes & Meier, 1978
Composers of Yesterday: A Biographical and Critical Guide to the Most Important Composers of the Past
David Ewen; David Ewen.
H. W. Wilson, 1937
Librarian’s tip: "Hugo Wolf, 1860-1903" begins on p. 469
The World of Great Composers
David Ewen.
Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1962
Librarian’s tip: "Hugo Wolf, 1860-1903" begins on p. 473
Poetry into Song: Performance and Analysis of Lieder
Deborah Stein; Robert Spillman.
Oxford University Press, 1996
Librarian’s tip: "Settings of 'Harper 1': Schubert, Schumann, and Wolf" begins on p. 211
Legend of a Musical City
Max Graf.
Philosophical Library, 1945
Librarian’s tip: Chap. XI "Hours with Hugo Wolf"
Romanticism (1830-1890)
Gerald Abraham.
Oxford University Press, 1990
Librarian’s tip: "Wolf" begins on p. 679
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