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Music and Propaganda, the destruction of a composer's career

Updated: Mar 12, 2021

Georg Fürst ( 1870-1936)

Nations, powerful men, dictators, politicians, sport institutions or even a professional player of darts, it is a common use to choose a piece of music when the person of importance enters a stage, arena, stadium, or show. The purpose is to build an image to impress the audience and opponents to create an atmosphere of power, awe and heroism. It was a general strategy to glorify the power of a king to paint a victory of a battle, composing a poem or a piece of music. For instance, in Versailles at the court of the French king, they performed plays about the glory of absolute monarch Louis XIV because of the annexation of the Franche-Comté in 1674. Beethoven composed the Eroïca in 1804 because he admired Napoleon Bonaparte. In 1914 the German composer Georg Fürst (1870-1936) composed the Badonviller Marsch to celebrate the first victory of Germany in the war with France. The main reason to start this war, was the common feeling in Germany that the so called

"Einkreisung" by foreign powers was a fact the Germans could not ignore and the German army had to respond. The common idea at the beginning of this war was supposed to be "Ein frischer, fröhlicher Krieg" (a fresh and happy war) and resulted in a catastrophe for humanity in the entire world. But the sentiment in Germany was extremely positive to start this war.

After the Germans lost World War I, in fact because of the intervention by the United States, great numbers of Germans felt humiliated and for that reason it explains the rise and fall of the Nazi party and the dictatorship of Adolf Hitler. The Nazi party adapted the piece and transformed it into the Badenweiler Marsch to glorify Hitler when he entered a stage or arena to make a speech. After World War II this composition was extremely contaminated. This was certainly not the purpose of the composer and it damaged his heritage of compositions.

If you want to know more about this piece go to:

I found this Badonviller Marsch in an archive for Salon Orchestra and was interested in the composition itself. Because it is still a dangerous path for a director to play this piece with an orchestra, because of the connection with one of the most cruel dictators in history, I decided to play this music with the help of my computer. I use the same method for composing film music by using the existing score and write it into a midi-file. The following step is to load it into a software midi recording setup and using samples from real instruments. After mixing and mastering of the music it sounds like a realistic orchestra, but of course a real orchestra sounds always better.

The composition itself is of great quality and skill but it was certainly not the wish of the composer to see his work ruined by criminal politicians.

I transformed the work from a Salon Orchestra version into a Brass version. This implicates that the contrabass is played by a tuba, the celli by trombones, violins by extra trumpets etc.

If you like to know more about the technique I used, please feel free to contact me through the contact form on this website. If you like to try the mixing and mastering by yourself, it is possible to get the score of the instruments and the midi-file to play it in your own Digital Audio Workstation, by clicking the picture of the music score below.

I posted the result of this educational project on Soundcloud:

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about this composition.

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