Peter Gellhorn

Peter Gellhorn
The Musical Legacy of Peter Gellhorn is an RCM Cultural Engagement Project, which was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council in 2016.

This project set out to investigate the musical legacy of the conductor and composer Peter Gellhorn (1912 - 2004), who arrived in England in 1935 as a refugee from Germany and went on to have a significant impact on musical life in post-war Britain.

His scores and papers, now held at the British Library, formed the basis of research by a team from the Royal College of Music. Manuscript scores of compositions were transcribed to create new editions enabling performance of the works, some of which had not been heard for over 80 years, in a series of public workshops and concerts. Research on Gellhorn’s papers, as well as oral history interviews with members of his family, enabled the compilation of a detailed biography. The scores and biography then informed a series of events, including lectures, readings, concert performances, and panel discussions, at the Austrian Cultural Forum, British Library, and Royal College of Music. 

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Supported by

Project team

Norbert Meyn, Project Supervisor

Terence Curran, Cultural Engagement Fellow

Project outputs

The project website is a repository for information and resources on Gellhorn and his music, including:

  • A biography by Cultural Engagement Fellow Dr Terence Curran.
  • A list of Gellhorn's works by year and instrument.
  • 16 performance editions of Gellhorn’s music, available for free download, including video performances of the works. 
  • Oral history interviews with Sangeet and Mary Gellhorn.
  • A 15 minute documentary bringing these different project outputs together.

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