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Max Büttner

Max Büttner was born on 29 January 1891 in Rodach (Germany). From 1905 to 1907 he played in the city orchestra of Sonneberg, in the season 1907/08 in Uerdingen. In 1909 Max Büttner began to study piano and harp with Max Saal in Berlin, since 1917 counterpoint with Hermann Wolfgang von Waltershausen in Munich and since 1926 conducting with Hugo Röhr.

He mainly worked as a harpist, from 1910 to 1912 in the Blüthner-Orchester in Berlin, than in the Royal Opera Orchestra Berlin, the Hoftheaterorchester in Dessau and finally became the prinicipal harpist of the Bavarian State Orchestra, a position he held from 1916 to 1947. Since 1919 Max Büttner also worked as professor at the Akademie der Tonkunst in Munich.

Max Büttner died in 1959.


The composer Adolf Büttner-Tartier (1873-1956) was the brother of Max Büttner. And Max Büttner should not be mixed up with the baritone singer Max Büttner (1859-1927).


Max Büttner composed over 100 compositions for all genres, among his works are an opera "Allvaters Volk", 5 symphonies, concertos for violin, harp, piano, tuba, trombone and 5 timpanis, several ballets, chamber music especially for the harp, songs, choral music and masses.

In my possession are autograph manuscripts of three compositions: The "Trio for 3 harps op.41", the "Serenade in 3 movements for 2 harps, op.40" and "Der Totentanz, for reciter and harp op.20 No.3".

Both the Trio and the Serenade were composed in 1929 and dedicated to Max Saal, the harp professor of Max Büttner. The "Totentanz" is not dated, but should be from around the same time.

The main archive of the manuscripts of Max Büttner is in the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek. Max Büttner was also a member of the Masonic Lodge "Lessing zum flammenden Stern" in Munich. This Masonic Lodge still exists today and is the holder of the copyrights for the compositions by Max Büttner. The publication of the Büttner compositions on my site was granted with kind permission from Lessing zum flammenden Stern.

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