Leading Swiss composer Wyttenbach dies

Composer and conductor Wyttenbach was described as a "master of the burlesque" for his ambiguous humour. Keystone/Ayse Yavas

The renowned Swiss composer, pianist and conductor, Jürg Wyttenbach, has died at the age of 86.

This content was published on December 25, 2021 minutes

He passed away earlier this week, his family confirmed on Friday.

Wyttenbach is considered a multidisciplinary artist whose work spans contemporary classical music, theatre, literature, clowning and performance.

“He has developed an intensely personal art form replete with ambiguous humour and delight in the scurrilous,” the Federal Office of CultureExternal link said in a tribute in 2017.

Wyttenbach taught at music schools in Switzerland for 35 years before he retired in 2002. During his career he conducted more than 100 works, often as premieres, according to the news agency Keystone-SDA.

He won several prestigious awards, including the 2017 Swiss Music Award and the City of Basel Arts Prize in 1993.

Wyttenbach studied piano and composition, under Sandor Veress, at the conservatory in the Swiss capital, Bern, as well as in Paris and Hanover (Germany).

Articles in this story

In compliance with the JTI standards

In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

Contributions under this article have been turned off. You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

Share this story

Change your password

Do you really want to delete your profile?