About Wendelin

Short Biography

Wendelin Bitzan, born 1982, is a musician, composer, and researcher in music. He graduated from the Berlin University of the Arts with degrees in piano, music education, sound engineering, and music theory. Subsequently he took up lecturerships in music theory and ear training at music universities in Berlin, Rostock, and Detmold. Wendelin regularly appears as a chamber musician, vocal accompanist, and performer of own compositions. He is the author of several papers related to music theory and music education, as well as the book Learning and playing by heart. On memorizing in music (2010). He is father of two children and resides in Berlin with his family.

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Extended Biography

Wendelin Bitzan, born 1982 in Westphalia (Germany), is a musician, composer, and researcher in music. Academic studies in music since 2003 at the Detmold University of Music and Berlin University of the Arts. Exchange semester at the Vienna University of Music and Performing Arts, 2009. Graduation from the Berlin University of the Arts, Faculty of Music, with diploma degrees in music education, majoring in piano teaching (2007), sound engineering, and music theory (2010). Subsequent teaching assignments and lecturerships in ear training, harmony, counterpoint, and analysis at the Berlin University of the Arts, Rostock University of Music and Drama, Detmold University of Music, Hanns Eisler School of Music, and Humboldt University of Berlin. Appearances as a chamber musician, vocal accompanist and performer of own compositions. Currently working on a musicological dissertation on the piano sonatas of Russian composer Nikolai Medtner, supervised by Christoph Flamm and Martin Eybl at the Vienna University of Music and Performing Arts.

Initial musical inspiration through playing the glockenspiel, recorder, and accordion. Piano lessons from the age of 10 with composer and music educator Lajos Papp (Oldenburg), since 1996 with concert pianist Almut Preuß-Niemeyer (Hanover). Master classes with Beatrice Berthold (Hanover) and Hans Leygraf (Salzburg). Participation in competitions Jugend musiziert, Jugend komponiert, and other national music competitions. Numerous awards on state and federal level (piano solo, chamber music, art song). Piano studies during university with Matitjahu Kellig, Wilhelm von Grunelius, and Thomas Menrath. Voice lessons as a second subject, member of the Berlin University of the Arts Chamber Choir and other a-cappella or choral-symphonic ensembles. Essential stimuli from the music theory and analysis classes of Hartmut Fladt and Stefan Prey. Scholarship holder of the Richard Wagner Association, Minden, and the Keller Budenberg Foundation, Berlin. Internships at music schools, at the Berlin-Brandenburg public radio station, at classical music label Genuin recording group (Leipzig), and microphone manufacturer Georg Neumann Ltd.

Activity as a composer since 1999, chiefly in the genres of acoustic chamber music (duos for wind and stringed instruments with piano, works for string quartet, a piano trio, a woodwind trio, a movie score), piano music (four sonatas, two fantasies, 24 preludes, several other cycles) and vocal music (a chamber opera after Oscar Wilde; songs on texts by Stefan George, Alfred Brendel, J. R. R. Tolkien, and numerous choral works). Performances in Germany, Austria, France, Switzerland, the Netherlands, South Korea, and the United States. Commissioned works for performers and institutions.

Research currently focusing on Russian music of the 19th and 20th century, piano cycles and piano sonatas, historical theories of sonata form, and Renaissance counterpoint. Author of several papers related to music theory and music education, published in music journals and other periodicals, as well as conference proceedings. Publication of the book Learning and playing by heart. On memorizing in music, 2010 (Peter Lang, Frankfurt am Main). Lectures and talks at conferences of German and Russian music theory societies, the European Piano Teachers Association, and the European Music Analysis Conference. Work as a freelance author and composer for various clients in publishing and music business. Numerous concert and CD reviews; author of introductions to concerts; editor of music-related websites and livestream transmissions; music notation, score writing, and arrangement jobs.