A Composer with a Conscience

Gottfried von Einem

Life: January 24, 1918 – July 12, 1996

Why you should know him: A famous Austrian composer, Einem not only opposed the evil Nazis regime, but saved a young Jewish musician from death at their hands.

As a young man, Gottfried von Einem moved from his home in Austria to Berlin in 1937, in order to study music under the famed composer Paul Hindemith. As the Nazis were consolodating their power, Hindemith resigned from his state-appointed post in protest of their evil regime.

Einem continued his studies – studies which would lead to his own renown as a classical composer – and wrote his first work, a ballet titled Prinzessin Turandot, in 1941. While Einem would lead a long career, writing many other important works (including the one seen in the above clip), his first work would save a life.

As World War II raged and the Nazis rounded up and murdered Jews, Einem met a young Jewish musician named Konrad Latte. Einem hired Latte as a rehearsal assistant for Prinzessin Turandot, and found the young man other jobs once that production was finished. Einem also obtained a Riech Music ID (which allowed Latte to perform in public) and a ration card, allowed Latte to use his own identification, and introduced the young Jewish man to others who could help him survive underground. All of these activities endangered Einem, but saved the life of another, thus earning the composer recognition by Yad Vashem as Righteous Among the Nations in 2002.

The Fellowship observes International Holocaust Remembrance Day and is committed to aiding Holocaust survivors in need all around the world – learn how you can join our effort today.

Tags: Advocates and Allies

More From Fellowship Blog

Fellowship Blog

From Pastor to Prisoner

Jean Severin Lemaire was an evangelical pastor in France who, during World War II, risked his life and was sent to a concentration camp for helping Jews escape the Nazis.

Fellowship Blog

Israeli Researchers Find Modern Tumor in Dinosaur Tail

Learn how Israeli scientists are using dinosaur fossils from 66 million years ago to help advance the medical field today!

Fellowship Blog

Prophecy in Action

Yael visits a new Israeli who you brought home to the Holy Land aboard a Fellowship Freedom Flight a year ago.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay informed about issues affecting Israel, the Jewish people, Jewish-Christian relations, receive daily devotionals, and more.