was first and foremost a vocal composer who is most known for his operas Hansel und Gretel and Konigskinder. Both of these operas began as series of incidental music and songs progressing through various stages to become full-scale operas. Much of his music was influenced by German folk music as well as harmonic and tactile influences from Wagner
. His music was composed at an auspicious time for fairy tales because the contemporary musical extremes included Wagnerian
drama and lifelike depictions from other composers. During the course of his musical career, which began at the piano-playing age of seven, he won numerous awards and honors, especially the Mozart
Prize of Frankfurt am Main, the Mendelssohn
Prize of Berlin, the Meyerbeer
Prize of Berlin, and an honorary membership in the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome.