Thielemann becomes patron of a tuba contest

Thielemann becomes patron of a tuba contest


norman lebrecht

February 10, 2016

He succeeds the late Kurt Masur as head of a horn and tuba contest in Markneukirchen.

thielemann sport1


Markneukirchen/Berlin (MH) – Der Dirigent Christian Thielemann (56) wird neuer Schirmherr des Internationalen Instrumentalwettbewerbs Markneukirchen. Das teilten die Veranstalter am Mittwoch mit. Thielemann ist Nachfolger des im Dezember 2015 verstorbenen Kurt Masur, der das Amt seit 2005 innehatte. Als weitere Schirmherrin stand für dieses Jahr bereits die sächsische Kunstministerin Eva-Maria Stange fest. Der Wettbewerb findet vom 19. bis 28. Mai in den Fächern Horn und Tuba statt.


  • Peter says:

    Now that’s a LOT of hot air,

  • John says:

    I’m curious, was Thielemann a tubist? He’s rather built like one.

  • Max Grimm says:

    No, he was a violist. He does have the chance to hear two excellent tuba players on a regular basis however – Jens-Peter Erbe and Hans-Werner Liemen.

  • Katrin says:

    The International Instrumental Competition is held every year, with the alternation of string and wind instruments.

  • Greg from SF says:

    It’s well known that Markneukirchen is a center of violin making.
    Is there a brass instrument-making tradition there as well?

    • Max Grimm says:

      Internationally Markneukirchen is mostly known for stringed instruments of the violin family but nationally, it is known as a build-centre for orchestral instruments. Among the internationally more known companies are Würlitzer (Clarinets); Gebr. Mönnig (mostly oboes & bassoons); Scherzer and Voigt (mostly trumpets but also trombones); Herbert Fritz Knopf – now run by his son Christian – and Hans Hoyer (french horns); Melton Meinl Weston (mostly tubas, baritones/tenor horns and trumpets).

      • Max Grimm says:

        I forgot B&S who build trompets, trombones, tubas, cornets, Flügel- and Tenorhorns.

      • Greg from SF says:

        Thanks, Max, for the information.
        I’ve a friend who has a Meinl trumpet and really likes it…. and my wife owns a Heinrich Th. Heberlein Jr. violin made in Markneukirchen in 1906, a quite beautiful – and beautifully fashioned – instrument.
        (Coincidentally, it was made in the same year that the SF earthquake occurred!)
        BTW, In the US, the Wurlitzer name is associated primarily with theatre organs, pianos (electric- and non-), accordions, and juke boxes. Is it the same firm as the German one? I believe that the US company is defunct.

        • Gerhard says:

          The best known maker of German system clarinets is Herbert Wurlitzer (no umlaut) in Neustadt a. Aisch

          As it seems he has another branch in Markneukirchen as well. Furthermore there are or have been a lot of other Wurlitzers making instruments. Herbert Wurlitzer dates the roots of his firm back to the year 1659. The Vogtland, where Markneukirchen is located, is a region which has produced all sorts of instruments for centuries. Mostly the producer families comprised much more than just one maker at a time. Now to answer your question: no, the defunct American Wurlitzer firm is not the same as the German clarinet maker. But since its founder had come from Vogtland, it is very likely that there are some family links, however distant.

  • 5566hh says:

    The competition is not just concerned with horn and tuba. Similar to e.g. the ARD competition, the instruments rotate each year: other instruments assessed in different years include viola, double bass, flute, etc.
    A quick search easily confirms this,

    • Gerhard says:

      The checking of facts is trustingly left to the readers of this blog.

    • Holly Golightly says:

      Maybe this just means that Thielemann is mainly involved in that section of the competition.

      • Max Grimm says:

        No, Norman’s wording is simply wrong. As “5566HH” pointed out, it is a music competition with alternating instrument categories and not a “horn and tuba contest”.
        Thielemann, as patron of the Internationaler Instrumentalwettbewerb Markneukirchen, is patron of the competition in its entirety; from horn and tuba this year, to cello & guitar next year, flute & bassoon in 2018 and viola & double bass in 2019.
        Each type of instrument featured in the competition has its own separate jury (the juries for horn and tuba this year:
        Whether Thielemann’s title is mostly ceremonial or whether he will have the right to vote on competitors, I do not know.