Martin Bernheimer

Martin Bernheimer (28 September 1936 – 29 September 2019) was a German-born American music critic. Described as "a widely respected and influential critic, who is particularly knowledgeable about opera and the voice", Bernheimer was the chief classical music critic of the Los Angeles Times from 1965 to 1996.[2]

Martin Bernheimer
Born(1936-09-28)28 September 1936
Munich, Germany
Died29 September 2019(2019-09-29) (aged 83)
Manhattan, New York[1]
Alma mater
Notable credits

Life and careerEdit

He studied at Brown University and the Hochschule für Musik in Munich as well as with the musicologist Gustave Reese at New York University.

His career writing about music began in New York, writing for the New York Herald Tribune, working as an assistant to Irving Kolodin at the Saturday Review, and landing the position of music critic at the New York Post. In 1965 he moved to Los Angeles where he worked as the chief music and dance critic for the Los Angeles Times. During his thirty years with that paper, he was twice the recipient of ASCAP's Deems Taylor Award (1974 and 1978) and in 1982 won the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism. From 1996 until his semi-retirement in 2017, Bernheimer's work appeared mainly in Opera magazine and the Financial Times. Bernheimer lectured frequently and provided commentary for opera broadcasts.

He died one day after his 83rd birthday.[3][4][5][6][7][8]


  1. ^ Allen, David (2 October 2019). "Martin Bernheimer, Tartly Eloquent Music Critic, Dies at 83". The New York Times. Retrieved 30 January 2022.
  2. ^ Smith, Patrick J. (2001). "Bernheimer, Martin". Grove Music Online. Oxford: Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/gmo/9781561592630.article.A2234347. (subscription or UK public library membership required)
  3. ^ Kelley, Sonaiya (29 September 2019). "Pulitzer Prize winner and former L.A. Times music critic Martin Bernheimer dies at 83". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 30 September 2019.
  4. ^ Farber, Jim (1 October 2019). "Martin Bernheimer: Reflections in a Caustic Eye". San Francisco Classical Voice. Retrieved 30 January 2022.
  5. ^ "Memories of Martin Bernheimer z"l". Boulder Jewish News. 3 October 2019. Retrieved 30 January 2022.
  6. ^ Page, Tim (29 September 2019). "Martin Bernheimer, prizewinning music critic with a lacerating pen, dies at 83". The Washington Post. Retrieved 30 January 2022.
  7. ^ Nordlinger, Jay (14 October 2019). "A Critic's Greatness". National Review. Retrieved 30 January 2022.
  8. ^ Lindsey, Robert (8 January 1977). "Critic and Symphony Out of Tune". The New York Times. Retrieved 30 January 2022.

Further readingEdit

  • Fischer, Heinz Dietrich and Fischer, Erika J. (eds.), "Bernheimer, Martin", Complete biographical encyclopedia of Pulitzer Prize winners, 1917-2000, Walter de Gruyter, 2002, p. 20. ISBN 3-598-30186-3