<span class="vcard">Wendelin Bitzan</span>
Wendelin Bitzan

Diversity Survey for Music Students

Dear music students, lecturers, and scholars! I am conducting a survey on diversity in music business and professional music education. If you are a student, you are cordially invited to participate. If you are teaching at a German university or conservatory, please forward the survey link to your students. Your help is much appreciated! The survey is in German language, will take around 20 minutes and is subdivided into five sections:

  • General questions of diversity in music
  • Composers
  • Researchers and teachers
  • Academic subjects and topics
  • Personal information

Symphonies of Light

While mostly appreciated for his innovative piano music, Alexander Scriabin also was a prolific orchestral composer. My latest essay for VAN Magazin, entitled »Shining Visions, Flourishing Forms«, focuses on his seven symphonic works, commenting on their stylistic and aesthetic features in reverse chronology, and contextualising the mutual appreciation of Scriabin and his friend, the poet Konstantin Balmont. Hope you enjoy the read!

Preparatory Workshop in Music Theory

I will be offering an online music theory workshop as a preparation for entrance exams at music universities in North Rhine Westphalia. The course is organised by Deutscher Tonkünstlerverband Nordrhein-Westfalen and will take place on two consecutive days, Thursday 11 and Friday 12 May, 3 to 7 pm. The participation fee is €40 for both days (see this website for more information and registration). Please share and forward if you have students or friends who are applying to study music in Detmold, Düsseldorf, Essen, Köln, or Münster.

» Download flyer and registration form

Teaching the Music of Amy Beach

So much looking forward to offering a music theory class at Robert Schumann Hochschule Düsseldorf dedicated to the analysis and interpretation of the remarkable music of American composer-pianist Amy Beach. We are going to discuss a selection of her orchestral, chamber, and vocal music, with special emphasis on harmonic and formal conceptions. I am particularly glad that there will be some fascinating guest presenters who agreed to share their expertise with the students: conductor Eva Meitner and violinist Judith Stapf with Trio Orelon. The course is going to take place on Wednesdays, 10–12 am, in alternating on-site and remote sessions. Let me know if you would like to participate in the online classes as a guest.

Questionable Opinions of a Professor

In an interview published by neue musikzeitung in March 2023, pianist and professor Hans-Peter Stenzl, in his function as vice president of Deutscher Tonkünstlerverband, made some highly disputable remarks on studying music and the representation of musicians’ interests. He questions the need for political engagement among students, and in all seriousness recommends to fully focus on artistic refinement without being distracted by »entrepreneurial thoughts«. In addition, he gets several facts wrong with regard to a current initiative of Deutscher Musikrat that aims to issue a statement on fair payment of freelance musicians, and regrettably spreads misinformation on the corresponding working group and its purposes. Simon Borutzki and I published a comment on behalf of DTKV Berlin, putting Stenzl’s most striking misjudgments into perspective. Read more here.