Ludwig Fischer

Born: 18th August 1745

Died: 10th July 1825

Birthplace: Mainz, Germany

Johann Ignaz Ludwig Fischer commonly called Ludwig Fischer, was a German opera singer, a notable bass of his time. Ludwig Fischer was born in Mainz on 18 August 1745 or 19 August 1745. Fischer began his musical studies not as a singer but with the violin and cello. When he was heard singing in a church choir and in student operetta productions, his voice was noticed and he took up singing seriously. He was then made a "supernumerary" singer in the Electoral court of Mainz. Starting in 1770, he studied voice with the tenor Anton Raaff in Mannheim, where he had first sung professionally on stage in 1767. He continued to rise to prominence in Mannheim. In 1772 he was appointed virtuoso da camera at the Mannheim court, and Prince-elector Karl Theodor gave him a scholarship to enable him to continue his studies with Anton Raaff. In 1775 he became responsible for singing instruction in the Mannheim Seminarium Musicum. By 1778 he was the highest-paid of the Mannheim court singers. In 1778, Karl Theodor became Elector of Bavaria, and he moved most of his Mannheim musicians with him, Fischer included, to the new court in Munich. While in Munich, Fischer married (6 October 1779) the singer Barbara Strasser (born 1758 in Mannheim), who sang with him in Vienna and was pensioned in 1798. The children of this marriage all became distinguished singers: Joseph Fischer (born 1780 in Vienna, died 1862 in Mannheim), Josepha Fischer-Vernier (born 1782, died 1854 in Mannheim), and Wilhelmine (born 1785). In 1779, Fischer moved to the Nationaltheater (today's Burgtheater) in Vienna (1779). He stayed in Vienna for three years, singing about twenty different roles. In 1783 he sang with extraordinary success in Paris, in 1784 in the principal cities of Italy; starting 1785 he sang at the court of Karl Anselm, 4th Prince of Thurn and Taxis in Regensburg, and in 1789 accepted a permanent appointment, made through the intercession of Reichardt, at the Italian Opera in Berlin, where he worked until retiring on pension in 1815. He took some breaks from his Berlin job to sing as a guest artist in other cities: Vienna (1787, 1798), London (1794, 1798, 1812). Fischer died 10 July 1825 in Berlin.

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