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2018-06-05: Kickton: Songs

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Erika Kickton

Erika Kickton was born on 21 May 1896 in Berlin (Germany). There is no information about her school and academic studies, but she first worked as a music teacher and as a music contributor for the local newspaper in Potsdam. In the 1920s and 30s she lived in Locarno (Switzerland) together with her female partner. During this time Erika Kickton worked as a writer, composer and journalist. She published poetry collections like "Gedanken und Stimmungen in Versen" (1921) and some of her poems were set to music by other composers like the "Two songs after poems by Erika Kickton for voice and piano op.59" by Arno Liebau. Erika Kickton also composed music herself, mainly songs. Her "Three songs after poems by Hermann Löns" were published in 1937. But her main profession was the journalism. She wrote articles for several music journals and also published books on musical themes, for example "Was wissen wir über Musik?", an introduction to musicology published by Merseburger in 1926.

Some time in the 1930s Erika Kickton moved back to Potsdam-Neubabelsberg. There is an documented incident during the Nazi regime that Erika Kickton refused to make the Hitler salute and therefore was arrested for two weeks. But there is no other information about her activities at that time. In 1947 Erika Kickton received a PhD in philosophy and later lectured characterology at the university in Frankfurt/Main.

Erika Kickton died on 28 September 1967 in Wiesbaden (Germany).

 

In my possession are two autograph manuscripts of compositions by Erika Kickton. The first is the song "Still!" for voice and piano on a text by Johanna Ambrosius (1854-1939), the second is also a song for voice and piano and titled "Ich und Du" on words by Friedrich Hebbel (1813-1863). The scores can be downloaded below:

Kickton_Still.pdf
PDF-Dokument [45.4 KB]
Kickton_IchUndDu.pdf
PDF-Dokument [57.7 KB]

In addition to these autograph manuscripts I also own a copy of the "Drei Lieder nach Gedichten von Hermann Löns" for soprano and piano. The cycle was published by the "Verlag Musikalische Fundgrube" (volume 2, issue 7) and consists of the songs I. Das bittersüße Lied; II. Irrkraut and III. Der Eine allein.

The Kickton autographs were part of a small collection of manuscripts and documents when I bought them. This collection included also a few other items of which I don't know how (and if) they are connected to Erika Kickton. For completeness I list these items here as well:

 

  • two autograph scores of piano compositions by Kurt Lange. Check my subpage of him here to get biographical information and details about the manuscripts.
  • two letters of reference by Robert Spörry for a soprano called Elli Seibel. Robert Spörry (*1878) was a Swiss baritone who also worked as a singing teacher in Berlin (Motzstraße 83). The two letters are dated 21.09.1942 and 23.03.1943 and both confirm that Elli Seibel took singing lessons with Robert Spörry for more than a year and that he is sure that Ms. Seibel has all talents to become an outstanding soprano.
  • a certificate by Hans Georg Gehse that he is the weekly répétiteur for Elli Seibel, nee Rosenau since 1 August 1942 and that he recommends vocal studies for Ms. Seibel. The letter dates from 29.08.1942. It is little known about Hans Georg Gehse, but he signed the letter with the title "airforce bandmaster" and there are a few published compositions by him during the Nazi time. In 1942 he lived in Bismarckallee 13 in Berlin.
  • an autograph music manuscript of a "Vokalise, for mezzo-soprano and piano" by a composer named Heinrich Haas. The composition dates from 24.12.1947 and is dedicated to Elli Seibel. As the title suggests there is no text included, the song should be sung on a vowel of the singers choice. Additionally there is also the autograph mezzo-soprano part. And there is a third autograph music manuscript for a "Adagio-Allegro" which dates from 2 May 1943.
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