Józef Koffler

Józef Koffler

Józef Koffler around 1931
Born 28 November 1896
Stryj, Austria-Hungary
Died 1944
Krosno, Poland
Fields Music
Institutions Academy of Music and the Performing Arts, Vienna, Austria, Lviv Conservatory, Lwów
Alma mater Academy of Music and the Performing Arts, Vienna
Known for First Polish twelve-tone composer

Józef Koffler (28 November 1896  1944) was a Polish composer, music teacher, musicologist and musical columnist.

He was the first Polish composer living before the Second World War to apply the twelve-tone composition technique (dodecaphony).


He was born on 28 November 1896 in Stryj, Austria–Hungary. He studied from 1914 to 1916 in Lwów and from 1918 to 1924 he studied music at the Academy of Music and the Performing Arts in Vienna. His teachers were Paul Graener and Felix Weingartner. From 1928 till 1941 Koffler was professionally active as music teacher in Lwów, teaching at the Lwów Conservatory. Polish exile composer Roman Haubenstock-Ramati studied in 1920–1923 composition together with Koffler in Lwów.

Koffler was a composer of 20th-century avant-garde Polish music and the first Polish twelve-tone technique composer.[1][2]

He must have come into contact with Edward Clark, the British conductor, BBC music producer and former student of Arnold Schoenberg, as his "Variations on a Waltz by Johann Strauss", Op. 23 (1935) were dedicated "À mon ami Edward Clark".[3]

When German troops entered the town Koffler was captured with his wife and son and forcibly relocated to the ghetto in Wieliczka (Poland). His further fate, including the date, location and manner of his death are unknown. At the beginning of 1944 he and his family were probably killed by one of the German Einsatzgruppen near Krosno (in southern Poland) where he was hiding after the liquidation of the ghetto in Wieliczka.

Most of Koffler's unpublished scores vanished in the turmoil of the Second World War, when he died in the Holocaust. Only two works amongst his numerous compositions were published after the war. They were released by the Polish editing house PWM and are available today. They are: String Trio, Op. 10 and Cantata Love, Op. 14. Several of his works have been released on records.

List of compositions by date and opus number

Complete list of compositions

Works fully preserved

Lost works

List of compositions by instrument

Piano music

Chamber music

Orchestral music

Vocal music


See also


  1. Schäffer, Bogusław. Mały Informator Muzyki XX Wieku (Little informator about the 20th century's music). PWM-Kraków-1975, pages 46, 270, 275, 282, 287
  2. Schäffer, Bogusław. Leksykon Kompozytorów XX Wieku (Lexicon of the 20th century's composers). PWM-Kraków-1963, page 292
  3. "Józef Koffler – Variationen - Universal Edition".

External links

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 11/16/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.