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Friedrich Zehm

Friedrich Zehm

Country of origin: Germany
Birthday: January 22, 1923
Date of death: December 4, 2007

About Friedrich Zehm

Friedrich Zehm was born in Neusalz an der Oder on 22 January 1923. In 1941 he began to study music with Walther Lampe (piano) and Friedrich Frischenschlager (theory) at the Salzburg Mozarteum. The very same year he was called up for Labour Service and military service; in 1942 he was seriously wounded.

From 1945 until 1946 he took private piano studies with Detlef Kraus in Hamburg and from 1946 until 1948 taught music at the Landerziehungsheim Unterschondorf at Lake Ammer. From 1948 Zehm continued his studies at the Freiburg Music Academy, with Harald Genzmer (composition) and Edith Picht-Axenfeld (piano) being the teachers who strongly influenced him. In 1952 he took his final exams and from 1953 until 1956 lived in Freiburg as a private music teacher, pianist and composer. In 1954 he received a scholarship of the Cultural Circle of the Confederation of German Industry. From 1956 until 1963 he served as music reviewer for the Amerika-Haus in Freiburg. From 1963 until 1985 Zehm worked as reader and editor for the Schott publishing house; during this time he also taught composition at the Department of Music at the University of Mainz (1980-1982).

Friedrich Zehm received the Promotion Award of the Robert Schumann Prize (Düsseldorf) in 1958, the Promotion Award for Young Composers (Stuttgart) in 1960 and the Promotion Award of the Esslingen Artists' Guild in 1961. His œuvre ranges from compositions for orchestra and chamber music works (particularly for wind instruments) to works for solo voice and choir.

His freely tonal compositions, often connected with a humourous twinkle in the eye, are characterized by pronounced rhythm and subtle counterpoint.

Since 1985 Zehm has been living in Wiesbaden as a freelance composer. Hi died on 4 December 2007 at the age of 84.


Geboren am 22. Januar in Neusalz / Oder
Abitur in Neustettin / Pommern

Beginn des Musikstudiums am Mozarteum Salzburg (Klavier bei Walther Lampe, Theorie bei Friedrich Frischenschlager
Arbeits- und Militärdienst, schwere Verwundung
Lazarettaufenthalt in Breslau, zeitweise Studienurlaub am Salzburger Mozarteum (1943/44)
Privatstudien in Hamburg bei Detlef Kraus (Klavier)
Musiklehrer am Landerziehungsheim Unterschondorf / Ammersee
Fortsetzung des Studiums an der Musikhochschule Freiburg / Breisgau (Komposition bei Harad Genzmer, Klavier bei Edith Picht-Axenfeld)
Tätigkeit als Privatmusiklehrer, Pianist und Komponist in Freiburg
Stipendiat des Kulturkreises im Bundesverband der deutschen Industrie (BDI)
Musikreferent im Amerika-Haus, Freiburg
Förderpreis zum Robert Schumann-Preis, Düsseldorf
Förderpreis für junge Komponisten, Stuttgart
Förderpreis der Künstlergilde Eßlingen (1984 Ehrengabe)
Lektor und Redakteur im Musikverlag B. Schott's Söhne, Mainz
Lehrbeauftragter für Tonsatz im Fachbereich Musikerziehung der Universität Mainz
seit 1985
freischaffender Komponist in Wiesbaden