Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Reinhard Oehlschlägel (1936-2014)

Very sad to note the passing today of the music journalist Reinhard Oehlschlägel.  Long-time editor for new music at Deutschlandfunk and founder, publisher, and editor, with his partner, Gisela Gronemeyer, of MusikTexte, a quarterly journal now in its 31st year and on its 140th issue and still published from their rambling apartment in Cologne in stubborn and cheerful independence. Trained as music educator and then a journeyman journalist on the Feuilleton pages of the FAZ in the lively years of Frankfurt's Adornovian 1960s, Reinhard was one of the leaders of the rebellion at Darmstadt in the early 70s, and was a longtime friend of American experimental music in Germany.  (He commissioned my wife Christina and I to translate N.O. Brown's lecture on John Cage, a project which involved translating large swathes of Finnegans Wake, and which paid a month's rent in our first, 22-square-meter apartment.) He was a joy to talk with, argue with (we would go on for hours about the paradoxes of the institutional avant garde), and a presence who will be missed.

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