Langhans, Frederick Wilhelm


Born in Hamburg; he became a violinist, author and composer. He received some musical instruction at the Johanneum in Berlin, and when  he was seventeen years old entered the Leipsic Conservatory. Here he studied violin under David and composition under Richter. While in Leipsic he played first violin in the Gewandhaus Orchestra and at the theatre. Going to Paris he received further violin instruction from Alard. From 1857 to 1860 he was concertmaster at Dusseldorf, then teacher and concert-player at Hamburg, Paris, and Heidelberg, where, in 1871, the University conferred upon him the degree of Doctor. He became professor of the history of music in 1874 at Kullak's Neue Akademie der Tonkunst, remaining there until 1881, when he joined X. Scharwenka's newly established conservatory, eventually becoming its director. He visited England in 1881, where he heard some open-air music in Glasgow, and the Worcester Festival and Patience in   London. Afterwards he wrote articles on music in England for the Musikalisches Centralblatt. Langhans was an honorary member of the Liceo Filarmonico of Florence and of the St. Cecilia at Rome. He died in Berlin. Among his compositions are a string quartet, a violin sonata, and a symphony, which are important works, the first named taking a prize offered in 1864 by the Societa del Quartette in Florence. His writings, however, are of even greater importance, including Das Musikalische Urtheil, Die Musikgeschichte in 12 Vortragen, a Geschichte der Musik des 17, 18, und 19 Jahrhunderts as a sequel to the history of music by Ambros, and a history of the Berlin Hochschule.