Dates of foundation and development of the publishing group
- Robert Lienau Musikverlag was founded in 1810 by Adolph Martin Schlesinger in Berlin, from 1991 in Frankfurt/Main, now in Erzhausen.
- Musikverlag Zimmermann, was founded in St. Petersburg in 1876, Headquarters from 1886 to 1949 in Leipzig, then in Frankfurt am Main, from 2013 in Erzhausen.
- 1885 Foundation of the music publishing company Max Hieber in Munich, since 2002 Edition Hieber of Allegra Musikverlag in Frankfurt am Main, now Erzhausen.
- 1979 Foundation of Chanterelle by Michael Macmeeken in Heidelberg, since February 2013 Edition Chanterelle of Allegra Musikverlag in Erzhausen.
The music publishers Robert Lienau and Zimmermann, Edition Hieber and Chanterelle (Allegra Musikverlag)
Contemporary history, economic and publishing history, music history and style changes are reflected in the group of publishers Robert Lienau, Zimmermann and Edition Hieber. 200 years German and European current and music events: Early years with opera and salon music, turn of the century with Art Nouveau and melodrama, 1st World War and the change to sound technologies, inflation and the global economic crisis with hit songs and radio light music, Third Reich and collapse with march music and prohibition of twelve-tone compositions, restart with avant-garde, popular music and the demand for educational literature.
Adolph Martin Schlesinger was born in Silesia in 1769. In 1810 he founded the Schlesinger book and music shop in Berlin. In a surprisingly short time he was able to expand his most successful music publishing house throughout Prussia. He was helped by the contract with Carl Maria von Weber about his successful operas. Schlesinger died in 1838 and his son Heinrich took on the business. In 1864 Emil Robert Lienau, born in 1838, could buy it from his former employer.
Julius Heinrich Zimmermann was born in Mecklenburg in 1851. He had business sense when he founded his company in St. Petersburg in 1876. He led his company in a cosmopolitan way and multiplied it by own instrument factories, huge showrooms and the publishing company. Until the turn of the century he cemented his reputation as one of the most influential music dealers in Europe. Russian composers as Mily Balakirev and Sergei Liapounow appeared early on in the publishing program.
Max Hieber was born in Munich in 1856. In his hometown, he opened his own business in 1884. In the associated music publishing company, he published mainly Munich and Bavarian music, among others the still known “Klampfn Toni”.
The founders died, Emil Robert Lienau in 1920, Julius Heinrich Zimmermann in 1923 and Max Hieber in 1914. Their sons continued the businesses. After the Russian Revolution the Russian shops of Wilhelm Zimmermann, born in 1891, were disposessed. He held the company’s headquarters in Leipzig. He published and promoted the piano compositions by Nicolas Medtner. Robert Heinrich Lienau, born in 1866, won the important Finnish composer Jean Sibelius for his publishing house. Adolf Hieber, born in 1898, was still very young when his father died. He had to be prepared, but in the 1920s he was active in the area of popular music.
What inflation had inflated, eroded by continuing deflation. Songs and popular music were much in demand now. Wilhelm Zimmermann took up contemporary, sophisticated light music and had success among others with Fried Walter, Rio Gebhardt, Clemens Schmalstich. Hieber published works by Weiss Ferdl, Karl Valentin and Georg Freundorfer. GEMA, co-founded by Robert Lienau (II), now equipped with enhanced copyrights, brought financial stability.
In the Third Reich, the publishers had to confine themselves in operating normally and continuously. The particular merit of these three personalities is the fact that they were working against the intentions of the Nazi authorities. Robert Lienau supported befriended Jewish publishers. Wilhelm Zimmermann saved his publishing company despite his status as a “non-Aryan”. Max Hieber was able to prevent the demolition of the Isar-bridges shortly before the end of the war. This mission could have cost him his life.
The postwar period was hard for all three publishers. William died in 1946 and his widow, Edith Zimmermann, born in 1900, ventured a fresh start in her hometown Frankfurt. Adolf Hieber had to rebuild his business, which was completely destroyed during the war. Robert Lienau could not continue his business even for reasons of age. The 1903-born daughter Rosemarie Lienau took over the management. 1949 Robert Lienau (II) died. His son, Dr. Robert Albrecht Lienau, got into the management in 1958.
Possibilities for exploitation of newer and older orchestral works arose through the recovery of broadcasting stations. Instrumental methods and pieces were published by all three companies, led by the needs of performance practice. Edition Hieber could take claim for themselves, to have promoted the laity and folk music. Zimmermann made its mark in the field of flute and guitar music, especially with avant-garde. The siblings Lienau published the new “Musicians Calendar” and achieved high sales with the piano methods by Richard Krentzlin.
Adolf Hieber made career in politics and was second Mayor of the City of Munich in the 1950s. 1971, seven years before his death, he retired and handed over his company to Ulrich Seibert, born in 1938. The Hieber publishing company flourished under his leadership. Seibert published award-winning works, such as the songbook “Lied & Song”, opera books and CDs for children and books by the Brothers Well (Biermösl Blosn).
The next change in management of Zimmermann took place by the death of the owner Edith Zimmermann in 1975. Her daughter Maja Maria Reis, born in 1929, led the publishing house very successful. She was the first female president of the German Music Publishers Association. She maintained the recent publishing priorities in the catalog and called the new speciality percussion to life. Furthermore, she took the music lessons by Ludwig Karl Weber under contract and published the German editions of the flute methods by Trevor Wye.
The Chanterelle publication company was founded in 1979 by Michael Macmeeken, whose goal was to create a reference catalogue for classical guitarists. Chanterelle’s editions were soon renowned for their accuracy and high editorial and production standards.
The siblings Lienau characterised their publishing company almost half a century. For reasons of age, they sold the company to Maja-Maria Reis and Cornelia Großmann in 1990. Rosemarie Lienau died in 1996, her brother followed in 2001.
Maja-Maria Reis died in 2000. Her daughter Cornelia Grossmann took over the management of the publishing companies Zimmermann and Robert Lienau. For many years the firms Zimmermann and Hieber had cooperated with each other. The friendship of the two companies can be traced back to the early postwar years. It was therefore obvious that Ulrich Seibert sold the music publishing part of his company to Cornelia Grossmann. She founded specifically the Allegra music publishing company and continues the firm as Edition Hieber. She is assisted in the management by Volker Mandler.
The tradition of publishing houses will continue. In Musikverlag Zimmermann the new series “Piano Moments” was released with new piano pieces, the invitation for crossover beyond the usual classical albums. Lienau sets, inter alia, on contemporary composers such as Graham Waterhouse and Ivan Shekov. The Hieber program was expanded with CDs from the field musical cabaret, as Sabine Fischmann. The children book series of operas was extended by superb new releases.
In 2013 the publishing group moved to Erzhausen and bought the Chanterelle music publishing company, which is continued as Edition Chanterelle in the Allegra publishing company. Founder Michael Macmeeken continues to edit the new editions of his former company.
Publishing houses are subjected to the changes of time and yet always serve the music and musical life. There are so many things that would be worth mentioning, however, for the sake of brevity are excluded at this point. If you are interested, we can send you our publisher’s histories in German.