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Kremsmünster

Stift Kremsmuenster
Stift Kremsmünster, Kremsmünster © 1995 Tomoko Yamamoto

Kremsmünster is a town developed below the monastery, Stift Kremsmünster, as shown in the photograph above. The monastery was founded in 777 by Tassilo III, a son of Duke Usilo of Bavaria and a cousin of Charlemagne, King of the Franks. According to legend, Tassilo III saw a stag with a bright cross between its antlers when he was kneeling over his son Gunther who had been killed fighting a wild boar. He tried to chase the animal but was not successful. He found a Benedictine monastery at Kremsmünster, where he lost sight of the animal.

The Kremsmünster Monastery has a gymnasium where Vogl and several of Schubert's friends in Vienna studied. Because of this connection, Schubert and Vogl visited there on several occasions.

There is little information on the nature of these visits except for what Schubert desribed to his brother and his parents in his letters. Schubert described the monastery as a place of beauty where his works were fondly performed.
Kremsmuenster from a distance
He liked a view of the monastery from far away, particularly that of the mathematical tower which housed an observatory (the building on the right-hand side) . Apparently there were several fans of Schubert's works among the monks and they had private concerts there. These visits were recorded in a few diary entries by Beda Plank who was a choral director (Regens chori). Father Plank had served as gymnasium's theater director before he became Regens chori since his specialty was more literary than musical. This theater department was quite active in that they performed regularly plays written by Father Plank. He also wrote libretti for musical plays which were composed by his predecessor as Regens chori, Father Pasterwiz. Vogl was a student during this period, and sang as a student there. There was another student, whom we know, at the same time. This student was Franz Süßmayr who finished Mozart's requiem. Since Süßmayr became Kapellmeister at the National Theater in Vienna in 1792 and the second Kapellmeister of Court Opera in 1794, I suppose that Vogl's friendship with Süßmayr might have had a role when he became a court opera singer.

I obtained my information on the monastery and the people involved from "Musikgeschichte des Stiftes Kremsmünster" by Altmann Kellner (Bärenreiter, 1956).
Additional information on the monastery in German


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Last Update: September 17, 2006