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Karl Wimmer

Karl Wimmer was born on 22 October 1889 in Landshut (Germany). He was born into a family of teachers, his mother was a quite good pianist and singer. The family played music regularly and so Karl Wimmer also learned to play the piano and violin. After his own school years In Landshut he began his education as a school teacher in Straubing. That included also musical studies under Anton Schwarz and Joseph Schiedermayr. He graduated in 1908 and since then worked as a teacher in different schools in Lower Bavaria for the next 15 years, only interrupted by military services in World War I. In some positions his work also included the organ services in the surrounding churches. This made him an good organist as well. In 1924 Karl Wimmer finally settled in Oberalteich, where he fulfilled his position as teacher for the next 30 years. The church in Oberalteich used to have a Steinmeyer organ and again Karl Wimmer performed on the instrument regularly. He retired from his profession in 1954 and moved to Bogen, later Straubing. Karl Wimmer died on 25 April 1971 in Straubing (Germany).

Karl Wimmer himself described his manual capabilities as limited which hindered him to become a brilliant pianist or organist. Therefore he focussed on music theory and composition. Financial reasons did not allow Karl Wimmer to seriously study music and so he was a mainly self-taught composer. Not till the age of 50 he took private lessons with Hermann von Waltershausen for two years, which brought his knowledge and composing to a new level.

Karl Wimmer nevertheless composed music from his early days as a teacher. His work catalogue contains works for piano and organ, an organ concerto, works for choir and orchestra like the mass "Albertusmesse" and several funeral marches. Furthermore a String trio (1929), two violin sonatas, a Sonata da camera and the Suite Altabensis.


In my possession is the autograph music manuscript of the "Variationen und Fuge über ein Thema von Kuhlau, für Streichorchester in zwei Chören" by Karl Wimmer. The work was composed in 1932/33 and is scored for a string orchestra in two groups - a string quintet section con sordino, the other quintet section senza sordino.

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