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Alban Berg


Alban Berg was born on February 9 to a well-to-do family in Vienna. Berg was the son of an export dealer and the daughter of a well-known court jeweler.1)

Young Talent

Berg had exhibited a great desire to pursue music by the time he was an adolescent, having already written many songs.2)


Alban's early pieces were taken to Schoenberg by Berg's brother, who subsequently encouraged Berg to become one of his pupils.3)

2nd Viennese School

Alban Berg is regarded to be a member of the second Viennese school, along with Arnold Schoenberg and Anton Webern.4)

First Vienna School

The first Viennese school was comprised of classical composers of the 18th century, such as Mozart and Beethoven, who came before Berg composed and were responsible for creating notable works in Vienna and laying the groundwork for the composers who would follow.5)

Controversial 2nd Viennese School

The second Viennese school was extremely contentious in the twentieth century because composers like Alban Berg broadened sounds by removing the large and rich orchestral forces that were popular as the twentieth century was winding down (during the late Romantic Period) and stripping down.6)


Berg's first instructor was Schoenberg. Berg initially followed and replicated many of Schoenberg's principles, but subsequently learnt how to build an uniquely own style within the framework of the 12 tone system that set him apart from other composers of the second Viennese school. Berg's creative technique was crucial in preparing audiences to embrace even more complex and nuanced current technical methods.7)

Helene Nahowska

Berg met Helene Nahowska, an aspiring opera singer at the time, in 1907 and the two fell madly in love. Despite her father's strong objections, they married in May 1911. They settled in Hietzing, a tiny suburb of Vienna, where Berg wrote some of his earliest successful compositions, including a Piano Sonata, Op. 1; String Quartet, Op. 3; and many other early works.8)

Albine Scheuchl

Berg had impregnated a girl, Albine Scheuchl. John Cage was their child. 9)

Scandal Concert

During a March 1913 event sponsored by the Akademischer Verband für Literatur und Musik in Vienna, fans booed his performance in the midst, the police were called, and his performance had to be canceled before it could conclude.10)


Berg, like practically many young men at the period, was immensely patriotic and enlisted in the Austrian military at the outbreak of the First World War. His disdain for the army may be seen in his opera Wozzeck, which is what he is most known for today.11)


Berg finished Wozzeck in 1922 and advertised it with his own money. He was not immediately invited to publish it, but the uniqueness of his work gradually improved his reputation as a composer. Wozzeck's premiere in Berlin on December 14, 1925, was such a big success that it established and solidified Berg's status as a composer to watch.12)

Hanna Fuchs

Hanna Fuchs-Robettin was married to Herbert Fuchs-Robettin and afterwards Alban Berg's mistress. When Berg visited Prague in 1925, they met. They fell in love rapidly, prompting Berg to devote his Lyric Suite to her and their forbidden love.13)

Later Years

Berg's final years were difficult for him as he struggled with poverty and the Nazi administration made it difficult for him to play publicly. The style of music he made at the time was not well received by the government, making it even more difficult to make a living.14)


He died at the age of 50 of blood poisoning from a carbuncle caused by an insect bite.15)

alban_berg.txt · Last modified: 2022/02/14 02:41 by eziothekilla34