Bruno Jaenicke (1887-1946)
Bruno Jaenicke came from the
tradition of horn players born and trained in
Germany and other European countries who emigrated
to the United States and filled positions in major
orchestras, often under music directors also from
Europe. Jaenicke was principal horn in Boston,
Detroit, and New York and was considered to be one
of the finest hornists of his time.
Jaenicke was born in Dessau,
Germany in 1887 and studied at the Sondershausen
Conservatory in Dessau. He soon was playing extra
for the Court Orchestra. He served in a military
band in Stuttgart, then joined the theatre
orchestra in Coblenz (1908-1809) and the summer
season in the resort orchestra at Baden near
Zurich in 1910. Next was principal horn
(1910-1911) in Freiburg/Brisgavia (where Ifor
James later taught), then principal horn of the
Royal Chapel in Wiesbaden, where he succeeded
Gustav Schulze and married Schultze's daughter.
It was while Jaenicke
participated in the Munich Opera Wagner Festival
as additional solo horn that he received a
telegram from conductor Karl Muck inviting him to
take a position of principal horn in the Boston
Symphony Orchestra immediately if he could resolve
his regular season contract with the Royal Chapel
in Wiesbaden. Jaenicke was able to call on Joseph
Himmer from Zurich to take over his contract, and
he played for the BSO from 1913 to 1919.
After two hears with the
Detroit Symphony (1919-1921), Jaenicke became
co-principal with Franz Xaver Reiter with the New
York Philharmonic, then principal from 1922 to
1943. He can be heard on a recording of Strauss's
Ein Heldenleben under
Karl Mengelberg. Jaenicke's two brothers-in-law,
Robert and Adolph Schulze, played second and
fourth horn with him in New York.
Jaenicke wrote a monograph
called "The Horn" for a New York magazine. This
entertaining article was reprinted in
The Horn Call in November
1971 and again in August 2000. Here is a brief
excerpt about the development of the double horn.
The success of this invention
was complete, although not quite as easy as a
conductor whom I know thinks. Let me tell you
about him. One nice day, I played for him in order
to get a position as first horn in his orchestra.
I played the F horn then. He accepted me, advising
me to use the double horn of which he had heard,
"because," he said, "it is so easy. When you want
a high note, you just press a button and there it
is." The good man did not know that we have to set
our lips in the same position when we play the
high C on the F or the B-flat horn.
Hans Pizka wrote about
Jaenicke in the November 1994 issue of
The Horn Call.