A music business returns to Leipzig

Nearly eighty years ago, in 1937, the Nazis confiscated Peters Edition in Leipzig from its Jewish owners, the Hinrichsen family, and handed it to one of their own, a man called Johannes Petschull.

Sixty-five years ago, the Communists confiscated what was left of the company’s property in East Germany.

The Hinrichsen family re-established Peters in London and New York, while Petschull carried on his dubious business from Frankfurt (you can read about some of the dodgy dealings in my book, When the Music Stops).

Now, after negotiating a minefield of legal and logistical tripwires, the three branches of the firm have been unified.

Yesterday, Edition Peters returned to Leipzig.

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  • A suddenly urgent need to know more on this subject has compelled me to search for, find (not quite so readily as might be hoped) and order the abovementioned book. Looking forward — in an uneasy, anxiously dreading sort of way — to having murky, in-the-background awareness dispelled by historical clarity; life as a symphony musician (concentrating on music-making, that is) has sometimes meant willfully ignoring the disheartening political aspects of the business.

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