Salon Wittgenstein and the Music

Paul Wittgenstein – der einarmige Pianist

16/06/24Sunday, 19:30Duration 2hToscana Congress Gmunden Toscanapark 6, 4810 Gmunden
Free entryfully booked
Paul Wittgenstein


Erich W. Korngold (1897-1957)
Suite op.23 for 2 violins, violoncello and piano left hand (1930)

Franz Schmidt (1874-1939)
Quintet No.2 for 2 violins, violoncello, clarinet and piano left hand (1932)

Born into a musical family as the brother of Margarethe Stonborough and the philosopher Ludwig, Paul Wittgenstein’s musical talent as a pianist soon became apparent.

The outbreak of war in 1914 brought his budding career to an abrupt halt; even more frustrating was the amputation of his right arm due to an injury sustained in Russian captivity. Back in Vienna, he resumed his career despite the restrictions, focussing on works for the left hand and acquiring his own playing technique, which brought him back to the top.

In 1930, Erich Wolfgang Korngold wrote the famous Suite op.23 for Paul Wittgenstein, shortly after the success of his opera “Das Wunder der Heliane”. Due to their Jewish origins and the rise of National Socialism, Korngold, like Wittgenstein himself, fled to the USA. Franz Schmidt was also commissioned in 1932 and wrote his two quintets for piano left hand. Wittgenstein only agreed to a performance with piano for two hands on the condition that the following sentence was printed in the programme: “This work was written by the composer for Mr Paul Wittgenstein for the left hand; it is performed today with his consent for two hands.” Today it will be performed in its original form.

On this evening, Hermann Beil will present excerpts from Paul Wittgenstein’s life story in a specially prepared reading version.


Benjamin Schmid, Ziyu He, Jeremias Fliedl, Ariane Haering, Matthias Schorn, Hermann Beil (artists)
Works by Erich W. Korngold and Franz Schmidt
Christian Hieke (project manager)
Salzkammergut Festwochen Gmunden (project organiser)

Lisa Neuhuber, Martina Rothschädl (Head of Programme remembrance culture)

A co-operation with the Festwochen Gmunden

Attention fully booked!

The event is already fully booked. Interested parties can be placed on the waiting list. Please contact the project organiser Festwochen Gmunden on 07612/70630 or

Macht und Tradition, Kultur im Fluss

Event info

Toscana Congress Gmunden
Toscanapark 6, 4810 Gmunden