Erk, Ludwig Christian


Director and editor of collections, especially German folk-songs. He was the son and pupil of Adam Wilhelm Erk, cathedral organist at Wetzlar, and studied also with Andre and later with Spiess at Frankfort. In 1826 he began teaching in the Seminary of Meurs, and started musical festivals in the surrounding small towns, cultivating a taste among the people for part-songs. In 1836 he went to Berlin as professor in the Royal Seminary and accepted also the leadership of the Cathedral choir, but resigned this in 1838 for lack of support. In 1843 he founded a men's chorus for the t study and singing of folk-songs, which still exists, and in 1852 a similar choral society of mixed voices. In 1857 Erk became musical director in the Royal Seminary, retiring from this institution twenty years later. His own compositions are less important than his editions of German songs, which number over forty. His Deutscher Liederhort is a work considered authoritative on German folk-songs. He left a valuable library and a large number of manuscripts, many of which were published after his death. The bulk of these  came into possession of the Konigliche fur Musik at Berlin.