Johanna Loisinger, Countess von Hartenau

by Susan Flantzer

Johanna Loisinger with her two children circa1894, Photo Credit – Wikipedia

On April 18, 1865, Johanna Maria Louise Loisinger, wife of Prince Alexander of Bulgaria (born Prince Alexander of Battenberg), was born in Preßburg, Hungary (now Bratislava, Slovakia).
Johanna, an opera singer, virtuoso pianist, and actress was the only daughter of conductor Johann Loisinger and his wife Maria Meier.  Coming from a musical family, it was natural that Johanna received musical training.  She sang soprano operatic roles in Prague and Opava (now in the Czech Republic), in Linz, Austria and at the court theater in Darmstadt in Hesse (now in Germany).  Johanna was one of the best-known singers of Mozart’s music of her time.

On February 6, 1889, Johanna married the former reigning Prince of Bulgaria, born Prince Alexander of Battenberg, (known as Sandro) in Menton, Alpes-Maritimes, France. It is possible that the couple met in Darmstadt as Sandro’s father, Prince Alexander of Hesse and by Rhine, was the son of Louis II, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine.  Alexander of Hesse and by Rhine had fallen in love with Countess Julia Hauke, lady-in-waiting to his sister Marie who had married Tsar Alexander II of Russia.  Alexander and Julia married morganatically and were allowed the style and title of His/Her Serene Highness Prince/Princess of Battenberg as were their children.  Besides Sandro, Alexander and Julia had two sons who made notable marriages.  Prince Henry of Battenberg married Queen Victoria’s youngest child Princess Beatrice and Prince Louis of Battenberg married Princess Victoria of Hesse and by

Alexander and Julia married morganatically and were allowed the style and title of His/Her Serene Highness Prince/Princess of Battenberg as were their children.  Besides Sandro, Alexander and Julia had two sons who made notable marriages.  Prince Henry of Battenberg married Queen Victoria’s youngest child Princess Beatrice and Prince Louis of Battenberg married Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine, the daughter of Queen Victoria’s daughter Princess Alice.  Louis and Victoria are the maternal grandparents of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

After their marriage, Sandro and Johanna assumed the style of Count and Countess of Hartenau and withdrew from public life.  Alexander joined the Austrian Imperial Army and lived with his family in Graz, Austria. The couple had two children, Assènne Ludwig Alexander (1890–1965) and Marie Therese Vera Zvetana (1893–1935).  The marriage lasted only 4 1/2 years as Sandro died in 1893 at the age of 36.

After Sandro’s death, Johanna and her young children moved to Vienna, Austria and she received a pension from Bulgaria.  Johanna was active in Viennese musical life and was involved in the building of the Academy Mozarteum in Mozart’s birthplace, Salzburg, Austria. She served as president of the Vienna Mozart Society, the Vienna Concert Association, and the Vienna Symphony Orchestra.

Johanna died on July 20, 1951 in Vienna at the age of 86. She was buried at St. Leonhard Cemetery in Graz, Austria, where her daughter had been buried.

Wikipedia: Johanna Losinger