15th February 1847
19th February 1927
Frauental an der Laßnitz in Styria
Robert Fuchs was an Austrian composer and music teacher. As Professor of music theory at the Vienna Conservatory, Fuchs taught many notable composers, while he was himself a highly regarded composer in his lifetime. He did little to promote his own work, living a quiet life in Vienna and refusing to arrange concerts, even when the opportunities arose. He certainly had his admirers, among them Brahms, who almost never praised the works of other composers. But with regard to Fuchs, Brahms wrote, “Fuchs is a splendid musician, everything is so fine and so skillful, so charmingly invented, that one is always pleased.” Famous contemporary conductors, including Arthur Nikisch, Felix Weingartner and Hans Richter, championed his works when they had the opportunity but with few exceptions, it was his chamber music which was considered his finest work. In his lifetime, his best known works were his five serenades; their popularity was so great that Fuchs acquired the nickname "Serenaden-Fuchs" (roughly, "Serenader Fox").