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Saadalla Agha Al-Kalaa

(b al-Qrayya, Syria, Oct 18, 1915; d Beirut, Dec 26, 1974). Syrian singer, composer, ‘ūd player and film actor and producer. In 1924 political circumstances forced his family to move to Egypt. His mother, the noted singer ‘Aliyya al-Munther, taught him singing in the Syrian style. He studied the ...

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Thomas Kaufman

(b Naples, 1873; d Bogotà, Aug 28, 1935). Italian impresario and cellist . He joined the orchestra of an Italian opera company touring the Balkans in 1890, and also performed in Egypt, but decided to try his hand as an impresario in 1895, giving performances in Alexandria (Alhambra Theatre) during August and September and in Cairo (Ezbekieh Gardens) for the next two months. The company was joined in Cairo by the young and not yet famous Enrico Caruso, who sang in five operas. Bracale was again impresario in Cairo, but at the much more important Khedivial theatre from ...

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Steven Huebner and Basil Considine

(b Port Louis, Mauritius, 1825; d Paris, Dec 29, 1897). French theatre impresario and stage director. A prodigy and musical entrepreneur at an early age, he founded a conservatory in Mauritius before moving to Paris to study singing at the Conservatoire. After 1848...

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Thomas Kaufman

( fl 1898–1918). Italian impresario . By 1899 he had spent four years in Egypt and the Balkans, and, starting in Odessa, had headed the first extended tour of the Russian provinces by an Italian company. Early that year, he reached Samarkand, later visiting Baku, Astrakhan and Saratov. He frequently visited Vilnius, Minsk and Riga during the early years of the century. He returned to the Balkans and Egypt in ...

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Gregory F. Barz

(b Offa, 1930; d Efon-Alaiye, Feb 7, 1996). Nigerian musician and religious leader. ‘Father’ of modern Jùjú, Dairo practised numerous professions while playing in jùjú bands in the 1940s before forming his own early jùjú bands in the mid-50s, the Morning Star Orchestra, which later reformed as the Blue Spots. Perhaps the first internationally recognized African recording musician, Dairo's successful ...

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James May

(b Palermo, March 5, 1915). South African baritone and producer of Italian birth. He studied in Genoa and with Stracciari in Rome and made his début as Germont in Genoa in 1937. A pilot in the Italian air force during the war, he was interned in Durban, where he settled. In ...

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Robin P. Allen and Michael Mauskapf

(b Frankfurt am Main, Germany, Dec 7, 1924; d Los Angeles, CA, June 13, 2010). Music administrator of German birth. He assumed South African nationality as a boy in 1934 and studied at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (chartered accountant 1946) and the University of Cape Town (BMus ...

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James May

(b Milan, July 5, 1943). Italian bass-baritone and director resident in South Africa. He studied the piano and singing privately while reading science at the University of Cape Town. His singing teachers were Albina Bini, Adelheid Armhold and Frederick Dalberg in Cape Town and, in ...

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Thomas Kaufman

(fl c1900–35). Italian impresario. Towards the end of the 19th century, his company was primarily active in touring the Balkans, Asia Minor and Egypt, with Smyrna (now Izmir), Athens, Cairo and Alexandria his favourite stops. During an extended tour of these cities, Giuseppe Anselmi was his leading singer. By ...

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Owen Wright

(b Zaragoza, north Spain; d Fez, Morocco, c1139). Philosopher, administrator and composer. He spent much of his life, first in Zaragoza and then in Játiva, south Spain, as vizier to various Almoravid governors, and later moved to Fez.

His Kitāb fī al-nafs...

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Vera H. Flaig

(b Balandugu, Guinea, West Africa, 1950). Drummer, director, and teacher of Guinean birth. Mamady Keïta began his official apprenticeship with the village djembéfola at the age of eight. By his late teens, he was lead drummer of Ballet D’Joliba. By 22 he became the company’s first drummer to act as artistic director. Upon his retirement from the ballet in ...

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Ronnie Graham

(b Waa, nr Mombasa, 1924). Kenyan popular musician. Konde has travelled widely in eastern Africa for over 50 years. Born in colonial Kenya, he absorbed the local nomba dance rhythms from an early age. He attended St George's Catholic School where he learned clarinet, flute and trumpet, and Western notation. In ...

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Wolfgang Bender

(b Oshogbo, Dec 18, 1931; d Ibadan, March 11, 1978). Nigerian playwright . Ladipo was an internationally famous author of Yoruba popular plays. For the Duro Ladipo Theatre Group he served as director, actor, composer, choreographer and manager. He was the grandson of a drummer and the son of an Anglican catechist. He was a member of his school's choir from the age of nine, and wrote his first play while still in school. At the same time he began composing and adapting European hymns to the tonality of the Yoruba language. The performance of his ...

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David Scott

(b Johannesburg, March 2, 1928). English music educationist, composer and administrator. After studying at the University of Strasbourg, at Jesus College, Cambridge, and with Lennox Berkeley at the RAM, he worked in South Africa as conductor, composer and broadcaster (1954–6) and then joined the BBC in London as a producer. In ...

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Gregory F. Barz

(b Ajido-Badacry, Nigeria, c1920; d Sabinas, CA, April 6, 2003). Nigerian drummer, composer and music organizer and promoter . Educated at the Baptist Academy in Lagos, he moved to the USA in 1950 where he took the BA at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia, in ...

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Harvey Sachs

(b Susah, Tunisia, March 8, 1933). Italian director . He spent his early years in Tunisia, Italy and Switzerland, and graduated in 1953 from the Accademia d’Arte Drammatica in Rome. For ten years he acted in plays by de Musset, Shaw, Wesker and several contemporary Italian authors, under such noted directors as Giorgio Strehler, Michelangelo Antonioni, Luigi Squarzina, Giorgio De Lullo and Virginio Puecher. He directed for the first time in ...