Schindler, Kurt

Alternative names
Birth 1882-02-17
Death 1935-11-16
English, Spanish; Castilian, German, Russian, French

Biographical notes:

Kurt Schindler, a composer, conductor, and folksong musicologist, was born in Berlin in 1882 and died in New York City in 1935. He founded the organization which became the Schola Cantorum of New York.

From the description of Papers, 1882-1946. (New York Public Library). WorldCat record id: 122580695

American composer and conductor of German birth.

From the description of Autograph letters signed (2) : [New York], to Mr. and Mrs. [Harry Harkness] Flagler, [n.d., 1910 and 1920?]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270668882

Kurt Schindler was born in Berlin, Germany, on February 17, 1882, and died in New York City on November 16, 1935. He was the eldest son of Josef Schindler, a Berlin banker, and his wife Marie Schindler: his younger brother, Ewald, became a prominent theater director. Kurt Schindler studied piano with Conrad Ansorge, and composition with Ludwig Bussler and others in Berlin: he took theory with Ludwig Thuille in Munich. Other teachers were Max Friedlaender, who influenced Schindler's interest in folk music, and Friederich Gernscheim.

Schindler's compositions were first performed by Ludwig Bussler in 1902, after which he conducted opera in Stuttgart and Würzburg. In 1904 he assisted Richard Strauss and Felix Mottl at the Berlin Opera, and went to the United States in 1905 to be a staff conductor at the Conried Metropolitan Opera House in New York. Beginning in 1907 and for the next twenty years, Schindler was a reader, editor, and critic for the music publishing firm G. Schirmer. In 1909 Kurt Schindler founded the MacDowell Chorus in New York, later changing the name to the Schola Cantorum of New York after three years. He resigned in 1926 to briefly become the musical director of the new Roxy Theater. Schindler was also the Choral Director of Temple Emanu-El in Manhattan from 1913 until 1922. In 1916 Kurt Schindler married Vera Androuchevitch, an actress from Odessa. She died in 1918, and in the early 1920s Schindler assisted her family in fleeing from Odessa to Paris due to the political climate and illness epidemics.

In the early 1930s Schindler intensively researched Spanish folk music and collected more than 1000 traditional melodies, many of which were published in 1941 by the Hispanic Society of Columbia University, which has sponsored his second trip. In 1933 Kurt Schindler became the first chairman of the the music division of Bennington University. Kurt Schindler died in New York City on November 16, 1935, after a long illness.

From the guide to the Kurt Schindler papers, 1882-1946, (The New York Public Library. Music Division.)


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  • Choruses, Secular (Men's voices)--Vocal scores without accompaniment
  • Piano quartets--Scores and parts
  • Songs (High voice) with piano
  • Violoncello and piano music--Scores and parts
  • Ballades (Instrumental music)
  • Music--Manuscripts
  • Choral music
  • Septets (Piano, violins (2), violas (2), violoncellos (2))--Scores and parts
  • String quartets--Scores and parts
  • Folk songs, Italian
  • Piano quintets--Scores
  • Piano music
  • Piano trios--Scores and parts
  • Songs with piano
  • Songs (medium voice) with piano
  • Violin and piano music--Scores and parts
  • Suites (Violin and piano)--Scores and parts
  • Folk music
  • Choruses, Secular (Mixed voices, 8 parts), Unaccompanied


  • Composers
  • Conductors (Music)
  • Musicologists


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