Kirchner, (Fürchtegott) Theodor
- Luise Marretta-Schär
- , revised by James Deaville
(b Neukirchen, Saxony, Dec 10, 1823; d Hamburg, Sept 18, 1903). German organist, pianist and composer. He was an accomplished organist by the age of eight. In 1838 he went to Leipzig, where he studied with Julius Knorr and C.F. Becker; he also received advice from Mendelssohn and joined Schumann’s circle. He went to Dresden in 1842 but returned to Leipzig the following year to study at the conservatory. Mendelssohn recommended him for the post of organist in Winterthur, and Kirchner spent his time there very successfully, teaching, composing and organizing the musical life of the town. Bülow, Liszt and Wagner admired his organ playing, and he was called upon to accompany the rehearsals of Wagner’s Ring. He was in touch with musical activity in Zürich, and in 1862 settled there, first assuming the direction of the subscription concerts and the leadership of a choir and later becoming organist at St Peter’s. During his Zürich period Kirchner became friends with Theodor Billroth and Brahms, whose antipathy towards the New German School of Liszt and Wagner he came to share....