Horenstein, Jascha
(b Kiev, 24 April/6 May 1899; d London, 2 April 1973). RussianAustrian conductor, naturalized American. He left Russia for Königsberg at the age of six and studied there with Max Brode. In 1911 he moved to Vienna (his mother was Austrian), where he studied philosophy at the university, the violin with Adolf Busch and, from 1917, music theory with Joseph Marx and composition with Schreker at the Music Academy. In 1920 he followed Schreker to Berlin, where he conducted choral societies, and became assistant to Furtwängler. His orchestral début was with the Vienna SO in 1923. After guest appearances with the Berlin PO and the Blüthner Orchestra he became conductor of the Berlin SO in 1925. In 1928 he became chief conductor and later director of music at the Düsseldorf Opera, where his repertory included Wozzeck, given in 1930 under Berg’s supervision. Horenstein remained at Düsseldorf until the Nazis forced him to leave in 1933. For some years he led a wandering existence, conducting in France, Belgium, Poland, the USSR, Australia and New Zealand (1937), Scandinavia (with the Ballets Russes de Monte Carlo, 1937) and Palestine (1938).
He went to the USA in 1940, conducting the New York PO and other orchestras in both the Americas; subsequently he took American citizenship. After the war, his widespread activity included some notable concert performances of modern operas: in this way he introduced Wozzeck (1950) and Janáček’s From the House of the Dead (1951) to Paris, and Busoni’s Doktor Faust to the USA (American Opera Society, 1964). He conducted at the Städtische (later Deutsche) Oper in West Berlin and at Covent Garden (Fidelio in 1961 and Parsifal shortly before his death in 1973). During the last years of his life he lived in Lausanne.
Although he disliked being labelled a specialist, Horenstein was an admired interpreter of Bruckner and Mahler. The programme of his Viennese début included Mahler’s First Symphony; his performance of the Eighth with the LSO in 1959 (Royal Albert Hall) remains a landmark in the recognition of Mahler in Britain. To this composer’s music Horenstein brought sharp intensity and burning clarity. He started making recordings in the late 1920s, and his gramophone repertory (which included early recordings of Bruckner and Mahler) reveals a versatility he did not always have the opportunity to show in the concert hall.
A. Blyth: ‘Jascha Horenstein talks to Alan Blyth’, Gramophone, xlviii (1970–71), 768 only
R. Osborne: ‘ Horenstein and Mahler: a Conversation’, Records and Recording, xiv/3 (1970–71), 44 only
J. Diether: ‘ The Recorded Legacy of Jascha Horenstein’, High Fidelity/Musical America, xxiii/10 (1973), 76–81, 83 only [with discography]
J. Lazar: ‘Horenstein at Work’, High Fidelity/Musical America, xxiii/10 (1973), 82 only
D. Barber: The Horenstein Legacy: a Discography (n.p., 1995)
RONALD CRICHTON/R
Horetzky, Feliks.
See Horecki, Feliks.
Horghanista de Florentia.
See Andreas de Florentia.
Horheim, Bernger von.
See Bernger von Horheim.
Horicius, Erasmus [Erasmus of Höritz]
(b Hořice, nr Budweis [now České Budějovice], c1465). Bohemian mathematician and music theorist. He was the first in the Renaissance extensively to apply Euclidian geometry to solve problems in music theory. University registers show that he studied or taught at Ingolstadt (1484), Erfurt (1486), Cologne (1488, receiving the Magister degree), Kraków (1494), Tübingen (1499) and Vienna (1501). He was probably in Vienna also in 1498 when Andreas Perlach recorded his music lectures. Horicius established a reputation as a mathematician in Vienna, but he must have left there well before 1510. Two of his works, Musica and Tractatus de sphera, are dedicated to the humanist book collector Cardinal Domenico Grimani, patriarch of Aquileia (northeast of Venice); they must date from after 1503, because the dedication of both works refers to Grimani as Cardinal of S Marco, a title conferred in that year, and probably from before 1508, when he was named Espiscopus Albanensis. Horicus referred to himself in the dedications as ‘Germanus’, mathematician, and doctor of arts and medicine. He addressed Grimani as his ‘prince and patron’, which suggests that Horicus settled in the VenetianPaduan area, where he perhaps practised medicine.
In his Musica Horicius aimed to emulate the method of the ancient Greeks in applying geometry and mathematics to study sense phenomena. He based his work on Euclid's Elements. Whereas in the first, second and fourth books Horicius explored musical systems from the standpoint of sense perception and conventional theory, in the third, fifth, sixth and seventh he applied geometric constructions, Euclidian theorems and numerical calculations to the observations of the other books. These propositions constitute a departure in music theory and take a new look at classical problems such as the equal division of intervals of superparticular proportion, which Boethius held was impossible. For example, Horicius demonstrated that the 5th (3:2) and the whole tone (9:8) could be divided by a mean proportional through geometric construction, and mathematically, which involved irrational numbers.
Although Horicius depended on Boethius for his knowledge of Greek theory, he recognized that the Latin (Gregorian) modes were distinct from the Greek. He modelled a modern scala ficta universalis that included six flats on the Greek system of tetrachords and modes (tonoi) . Musica was cited by Mersenne, Gerhard Vossius and Conrad Matthaei, and was known also to N.C. Peiresc and G.B. Doni.
WRITINGS
Musica speculativa per magistrum Erasmum Heritius lecta, 1498, DMu 752; ed. in Kroyer [lecture notes probably made by Andreas Perlach]
Librum musicae, DBsb Mus.theor.1310
Musica Erasmi Horicij Germani pro Rmo Cardinali Dominico Grimanno, IRvat Reg.lat.1245
Tractatus de sphera, IFl Ashb.1417
BIBLIOGRAPHY
T. Kroyer: ‘Die Musica speculativa des Magister Erasmus Heritius’, Festschrift zum 50. Geburtstag Adolf Sandberger (Munich, 1918), 65–120
L. Santifaller, ed.: Die Matrikel der Universität Wien, ii (Vienna, 1959), 294
C. de Waard, ed.: Correspondance du P. Marin Mersenne, v–vii (Paris, 1959–62)
C. Palisca: ‘The Musica of Erasmus of Höritz’, Aspects of Medieval and Renaissance Music: a Birthday Offering to Gustave Reese, ed. J. LaRue and others (New York, 1966/R), 628–48; repr. in C.V. Palisca: Studies in the History of Italian Music and Music Theory (Oxford, 1994), 146–67
G. Pietzsch: Zur Pflege der Musik an den deutschen Universitäten bis zur Mitte des 16. Jahrhunderts (Hildesheim, 1971)
E. Kurtz: ‘Erasmus von Höritz, ein Humanist aus dem Böhmerwald’, Der Kreis Krummau an der Moldau; die Heimat Adalbert Stifters, ed. R. Essl (Krummau an der Moldau, 1983), 224–7
CLAUDE V. PALISCA
