“The Venerable Firm of Busch & Serkin”

Stephen Lehmann and Marion Faber

in Rudolf Serkin

Published in print February 2003 | ISBN: 9780195130461
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199849499 | DOI:
“The Venerable Firm of Busch & Serkin”

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The chapter recounts Rudolf Serkin's life with his friend and musical partner, Adolf Busch. The latter was a gifted German violinist, who, together with his wife Frieda, took the young Serkin under his wing in Berlin. This so-called Busch-Serkin collaboration proved successful and Serkin was kept busy with a grueling pace of concerts and recitals for which he quickly earned a reputation as a musical genius. The group toured throughout Europe, earning acclaim along the way. Eventually, the Busch family and Serkin moved to Basel in Switzerland, in the wake of the deteriorating political climate in Germany. In Basel, Serkin became acquainted with many famous musical talents such as Albert Schweitzer, Vladimir Horowitz, Rachmaninoff, Paul Sacher, and Toscanini. The chapter also delves into Serkin's venture into composing and recording and relates the impact of the Second World War on his life. The section ends with his marriage to Irene Busch.

Keywords: Rudolf Serkin; Adolf Busch; Frieda; Busch-Serkin collaboration; Albert Schweitzer; Vladimir Horowitz; Rachmaninoff; Paul Sacher; Toscanini; Irene Busch

Chapter.  13707 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Musicology and Music History

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