Friday, May 23, 2008

In Memoriam Siegmund Nissel

'Had Sigi been able to pursue his education without interruption in Austria he might have followed a profession other than that of a musician. He has an excellent mind and says he would have liked to have been a scientist; but he is also a gifted linguistic and competent in many fields. He once called himself a frustrated footballer. The cellist William Pleeth, with whom the Amadeus frequently played, summed up his relationship with Sigi in these words: "I feel I can talk to Sigi all day and night. When you have an affection for someone, then you are contetedly alive with that person, there are no reservations spiritually, humanity-wise and intellectually, and you play ping-ping non-stop".' Muriel Nissel writes of her husband Siegmund Nissel (far right in photo above), second violin of the Amadeus Quartet, who died on May 21, 2008.

The last time I heard the Amadeus play was in the Philharmonie in Berlin shortly before the death of their viola player Peter Schidlof brought their performing career to a premature end in 1987. It was a privilege to have heard them making music live. Fortunately they left many fine recordings behind, their CD of Haydn's Emperor Quartet, op. 76 No. 3 plays as I write.

Speaking of ping-pong.
Quotation from Married to the Amadeus Quartet by Muriel Nissel (ISBN 1900357127 which is highly recommended. Any copyrighted material on these pages is included as "fair use", for the purpose of study, review or critical analysis only, and will be removed at the request of copyright owner(s). Report broken links, missing images and errors to - overgrownpath at hotmail dot co dot uk

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