Walter, Arnold

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Walter, Arnold

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  • Walter, Arnold Maria

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Arnold Walter was a musicologist, educator, and administrator, born August 30, 1902 in Hannsdorf (Hanušovice), Moravia; died October 6, 1973 in Toronto, Ontario.

Following his music education in Brno, Moravia (now the Czech Republic), where he studied with Bruno Weigl, he attended law school at the University of Prague. He went on to study musicology at the University of Berlin with Hermann Abert, Curt Sachs, and Johannes Wolf; piano with Rudolf Breithaupt and Frederic Lamond; and composition with Franz Schreker. He briefly studied medicine at Masaryk University in Brno, before returning to Berlin, where he wrote for the music journal Melos. He was also an editor for Die Weltbühne and music critic for Vorwärts.

Walter emigrated to Majorca, Spain in 1933; then to England at the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War (1936); and finally to Canada in 1937, where he became a prominent and influential player in Canadian music education. He introduced Carl Orff's teaching method to North America (1955), established the Senior School (1945) and the Opera School (1946) at the Toronto Conservatory of Music, and was director (1952-1968) of the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto.

Walter also served as chairman of the editorial board of The Canadian Music Journal (1956-1962); president of the International Society for Musical Education (1953-1955); president of the Canadian Music Centre (1959, 1970); president of the Canadian Music Council (1965-1966); president of the Inter-American Music Council (1969-1972); founding president of the Canadian Association of University Schools of Music (now Canadian University Music Society, 1965-1967); and founding member on the board of trustees of the National Arts Centre, Ottawa.

In 1974, the concert hall in the Edward Johnson Building at the University of Toronto was named Walter Hall in his memory. He was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1971.


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Created November 12, 2020.




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