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Peter Branscombe

revised by David J. Buch

[Görl]

Austrian family of singers and composers.

(b Andorf, Upper Austria, Nov 30, 1764; d Mannheim, March 9, 1827). Bass and composer. The son of a village schoolmaster and organist, Gerl by 1777 was an alto chorister at Salzburg, where he must have been a pupil of Leopold Mozart. He was at the Salzburg Gymnasium from 1778 until 1782 and he then went on to study logic and physics at the university. In the autumn of 1785 he went to Erlangen as a bass, joining the theatrical company of Ludwig Schmidt, who had been at Salzburg earlier that year. In the autumn of 1786 he joined G.F.W. Grossmann’s company, performing in the Rhineland, and specialized in ‘comic roles in comedies and Singspiele’. By 1787 he was a member of Schikaneder’s company at Regensburg, making his début in Sarti’s Wenn zwei sich streiten (Fra i due litiganti) and appearing as Osmin in ...

Article

Peter Branscombe

revised by David J. Buch

(Emanuel)

(b Mirotice, Feb 7, 1758; d Munich, Dec 10, 1826). Austrian tenor, composer, and flautist of Bohemian origin. He acquired a basic musical and general education from his father, a school teacher, and later studied at Staré Sedlo, Svatá Hora and (from 1773) Prague, where he was a chorister at the cathedral. From 1775 he studied medicine, philosophy, and singing (with Karl Frieberth) in Vienna; while a student he wrote some Singspiele and oratorios. In 1780 he was appointed Kapellmeister to Prince Heinrich von Schönaich-Carolath in Silesia. After two years of irregular employment, mostly in Bohemia, he joined Schikaneder’s travelling theatre company in 1786. The company toured extensively in southern Germany and Austria before settling in Vienna in 1789, where Schack became the principal tenor at the Theater auf der Wieden (1789). His fame as a composer was based on his (and others’) contributions to the series of Schikaneder’s seven ‘Anton’ Singspiele, mostly written in collaboration with F.X. Gerl and J.B. Henneberg He was a close friend of Mozart, who composed (or assisted with) certain numbers for Schack, Henneberg and F.X. Gerl’s theatrical scores (notably the duet ‘Nun liebes Weibchen’ ...

Article

Peter Branscombe

revised by David J. Buch

(b Vienna, Dec 5, 1768; d Vienna, Nov 26, 1822). Austrian composer, Kapellmeister and organist. He succeeded his father as organist at the Schottenstift in Vienna, and by late 1789 had joined Schikaneder’s company at the Theater auf der Wieden (later the Theater an der Wien) as Kapellmeister and composer. He probably coordinated and certainly contributed to a number of successful collaborative operas at that theatre, particularly the series Der dumme Gärtner aus dem Gebirge, and numerous fairy-tale singspiels such as Der Stein der Weisen (1790) and Der wohltätige Derwisch (1791). He also arranged a number of foreign-language operas in German translation for the theatre. He supervised rehearsals of Die Zauberflöte during Mozart’s absence in Prague and conducted the opera from the third performance. From 1797 he had an able co-director in Seyfried. Apart from his own works, he arranged the piano scores of the Süssmayr-Schikaneder ...