Laub, Ferdinand


Violin virtuoso; born in Prague. His father was a musician and gave him his first instruction. When six years of age he could play the variations by De Beriot, and at nine he made a concert-tour in Bohemia. When eleven he entered the Prague Conservatory to study under Moritz Mildner, who had taken charge of his musical education. A few years after the Archduke Stephen presented him with an Amati violin, and sent him to Vienna in 1847. After some wellattended concerts there he started for Paris, giving performances in the  principal towns en route. In 1851 he visited London, and two years later succeeded Joachim at the Music School at Weimar. From 1855 to 1857 he was instructor in Steen's Conservatory, Berlin, and later concertmaster of the Court Orchestra there and chamber virtuoso. In 1864 he made an extended tour with Carlotta Patti, the pianist Jaell and the cellist Kellermann, and in 1866 became professor of the violin at the Moscow Conservatory. In 1874 his health gave out, and he tried the baths of Carlsbad, but died the following year at Gries, near Botzen, in the Tyrol. As a player, Laub had much feeling and expression, as well as a beautiful tone and brilliant technique. His repertory was large, but one of his most frequent numbers was Joachim's Hungarian Concert. He produced some compositions, of which the only one now heard to any extent is the hackneyed Polonaise.