Join our mailing list!





You are here: Home > Biographies > Female Composers > Kinkel
tidying Kinkel's grave  
tidying Kinkel's grave with Monica Klaus, Wulf and Colin

Johanna Kinkel
(1810-1858)
Johanna was an intelligent and gifted woman who made her mark in the worlds of both music and literature. Born in Bonn, her first music teacher was F. A. Ries (also Beethoven's teacher) who encouraged her to conduct and compose.  Both Mendelssohn and Schumann encouraged her musical efforts and she might have had a great career if she had not been living in an era when women of any social standing were discouraged from taking part in professional music.  Her first marriage ended after just six months. Her second marriage gave her four children to look after and a husband who was frequently away , leaving her to be bread-winner as well as full-time parent. She got caught up in the events of the German revolution, helped rescue her husband from Spandau prison and emigrated to London, England. She wrote books and music, gave lectures on Chopin, Beethoven and other composers and advocated the use of quarter-tones (although she did not employ them in her own compositions.) Her life ended tragically before she was fifty years old when she fell from her bedroom window in Eastbourne Terrace, London. Her output consists largely of songs.
In 2008 Trübcher Publishing embarked on an extensive and long-term project to publish her music including the Vogelkantate which received a standing ovation when it was performed. Full of humour, it depicts five birds trying to organise a music rehearsal. Further performances of the work have been held including one in the splendid Rhine island Nonnenwerth.   An excellent biography by Monica Klaus (in german) was published in October 2008 and further information can be found on Monica's website

For more information on how to book an entertaining and illustrated talk entitled
Johanna Kinkel, Was she pushed or did she fall?’ contact Roz Trübger by email or telephone 0441202884196
 

...I located her grave in Brookwood cemetry - a curious event because I arrived at this vast location with only 30 minutes available to search and with no idea of where to begin looking. Eventually, after 25 minutes of fruitless hunting, I lifted my head to the sky and called out "where are you, Johanna?" whereupon a car pulled up, the driver enquired whether I needed assistance and drove me straight to her grave on the opposite side of the cemetry ... Roz Trübger

.