(Vienna, 25.02.2021) It is with extreme sadness that we have learned of the passing away of PROF. WOLFGANG BOETTCHER, aged 86, in Berlin.
Wolfgang Boettcher was closely associated with the GMJO for more than 25 years: he was working with the GMJO cello section on numerous projects, in Bolzano or Pordenone, in Lisbon or Lucerne, and in Abu Dhabi or Bad Schandau. He was cello tutor and jury member, a source of inspiration and enthusiasm, he was the soul and heart of the cello sections of the GMJO for generations of musicians. He was a devoted teacher and a humble musician, he was a shining example and a great colleague and friend.
Born in Berlin in 1935, Wolfgang Boettcher studied cello with Richard Klemm and Maurice Gendron; in 1958, he won the Second Prize at the Internationaler Musikwettbewerb der ARD, together with his sister Ursula Trede-Boettcher, a pianist. In the same year, he joined the Berliner Philharmoniker under Herbert von Karajan and became solo cellist there in 1963 - a position he held until 1976, when he decided to concentrate on his other activities: apart from his concert appearances als soloist and and chamber musician - working with the greatest musicians of his era, from Herbert von Karajan to Sergiu Celibidache, from Yehudi Menuhin to Daniel Barenboim, from Paul Hindemith to Witold Lutoslawski - , he was professor at the
Universität der Künste Berlin, founding member of Die 12 Cellisten der Berliner Philharmoniker and of the Brandis-Quartett. He was chairman of the jury of the Grand Prix Emanuel Feuermann at the Kronberg Academy, and he was giving master classes around the world.
We were firmly planning with him for this year’s tour projects, and we were immensely looking forward to enjoying, once again, his youthful spirit, his teaching generosity, the huge treasure of his anecdotes - and his authentic Berliner humour.
Our heartfelt condolences go to his wife and to his family, and we join the musical world in mourning one of the true giants.
Thank you for all you gave to us.
Rest in peace, dear Wolfgang Boettcher.