Born: 1873, Brand, Bavaria
Died: 1916, Leipzig, Germany
"Other people write fugues - I live inside them."
Max Reger produced an enormous output in all genres during his 20-year career. He studied music in Munich and Wiesbaden with Hugo Riemann. From 1907 he worked in Leipzig, where he was music director of the university until 1908 and professor of composition at the conservatory until his death. He was also active internationally as a conductor and pianist in that period of time.
Many of his works are fugues or in variation form, including what is probably his best-known orchestral work, the Variations and Fugue on a theme of Mozart (based on the opening theme of Mozart's Piano Sonata K. 331). He also wrote a large amount of music for organ, including the Fantasy and Fugue on BACH. His work often combines the classical structures of these composers with the extended harmonies of Franz Liszt and Richard Wagner and the complex counterpoint of J.S. Bach. His late piano and two-piano music places him as a successor to Brahms in the central German tradition.