Deutsche Harmonia Mundi

Deutsche Harmonia Mundi

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Deutsche Harmonia Mundi (founded 1958) is a German classical music record label. It was founded by Rudolf Ruby and based in Freiburg, Breisgau. The company was acquired by BMG Music in 1992, and is now part of Sony BMG.[1] Ruby had Alfred Krings of WDR assemble their own house orchestra Collegium Aureum, founded 1964, to perform early music, selecting as leader Franzjosef Maier.[2]

During the war Ruby had been imprisoned as a member of the Kreisau Circle of anti-Nazi resistance, and at a reunion in the 1960s he met fellow resistance member prince Joseph-Ernst Graf Fugger von Glött who invited him to use the Fugger castle, Schloss Fugger, in Kirchheim in Schwaben for his concerts and recordings.[3][4] The connection with the Fugger family continued through the "Music of the Fuggers" recording made for DHM by Anthony Rooley.

Ruby had distribution deals with his friend Bernard Coutaz of Harmonia Mundi France, until first BASF, then briefly with EMI bought into the label in the late 1980s, before finally selling to BMG in 1992 and retiring in 1993. In his retirement Ruby later founded the smaller Ars Musici label, which was purchased in 2008 by Membran.[5]


  1. ^ High fidelity: Volume 12 1962 "Harmonia Mundi has no intention of competing with the big recording firms. "We' re merely trying to fill gaps." Ruby says. And the gaps which the better-known European companies are leaving are. in fact, in the re-creation of early music ..."
  2. ^ Dorottya Fabian Bach performance practice, 1945-1975 Page 36 2003 "The instigators were Alfred Krings and Eduard Groninger. Krings was a musicologist, producer and general manager of West-German Radio in Cologne. His influence on and patronage of early music were enormous "
  3. ^ Gramophone: Volume 68, Issues 809-811 1990 Rudolf Ruby, founder-director of Deutsche Harmonia Mundi, and Prince Fugger were members of the same resistance group, Kreisauer Kreis, and they ended up in the same concentration camp. At a reunion of survivors, the Prince offered to show Ruby over his Renaissance Schloss. and invited him to make music there. It was the early 1960s; Ruby had just founded both Deutsche Harmonia Mundi his record company and its
  4. ^ Gramophone: Volume 73 1995 - Ameling recalls the Deutsche Harmonia Mundi sessions at Schloss Fugger in Kircheim inner Teck.
  5. ^ MusikWoche März 2008 "Membran kauft Ars Musici" – Membran International verantwortet künftig alle Veröffentlichungen des von Rudolph Ruby gegründeten Klassik-Labels Ars Musici.
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