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Charles Pitt

(b Hinsbourg, Jan 4, 1904; d Illkirch-Graffenstaden, Sept 7, 1984). French conductor, composer and opera administrator . He studied in Strasbourg with Erb and in Paris with Koechlin and Gédalge. He joined the Strasbourg Opera in 1933 as a répétiteur and stayed until he retired in 1972, being successively chorus master (1933–6), conductor from 1936, co-director (with Ernest Bour) from 1955 to 1960 and director (1960–72).

Adam sought to create a balanced repertory of French, German and Italian classics, together with contemporary works (such as Jean Martinon’s Hécube, 1956, which was specially commissioned) and revivals of rarely given masterpieces such as Les Troyens (1960) and Roussel’s Padmâvatî (1967). He gave the first French performances of Bizet’s Don Procopio (1958), Françaix’s L’apostrophe (1958), Dallapiccola’s Il prigioniero (1961), Strauss’s Die Frau ohne Schatten (1965), Britten’s ...


Xoán M. Carreira

(b Colmenar Viejo, Madrid, March 12, 1884; d El Ferrol, Coruña, Nov 4, 1938). Spanish composer and conductor He studied the flute and composition at the Madrid Conservatory, where he was a pupil of Tomás Bretón. After playing in chamber groups and touring abroad (1906–9), he was appointed director of music of a regiment in El Ferrol, where he spent the rest of his life except for a period in Africa, 1915–17. As well as a large amount of military music, three dramatic scenes and five symphonic poems, he composed many zarzuelas (alone and in collaboration), of which few survive. In 1928 he conducted the première of his opera Cantuxa, whose success led to further performances in Spain and at the Teatro Colón. A story of jealousy (including a death quarrel at a local folk festival) in rural Galicia, the opera exemplifies verismo in its continuous melodic tension, vocal characterization, immediacy of emotion and the anguish of its brutal ending. Of Baudot-Puente’s other opera, ...


Adeodatas Tauragis

(b Vilnius, April 16, 1869; d Vilnius, March 7, 1953). Lithuanian conductor and composer . He studied the piano, composition and conducting at the St Petersburg conservatory with Rimsky-Korsakov, Lyadov and Glazunov, graduating in 1900. His début as an opera conductor took place in Gor’kiy (now Nizhny-Novgorod) in 1899...


Arthur Jacobs


(b London, March 14, 1887; d Killin, Perthshire, Dec 19, 1982). English conductor and composer. He was a choirboy at Westminster Abbey, organ scholar at Exeter College, Oxford (1908–12), and then a student at the St Petersburg Conservatory, where his teachers included Nikolay Tcherepnin and Maximilian Steinberg. He graduated in 1917 and after military service in Britain returned to Petrograd as an assistant to Albert Coates, at that time a conductor at the Mariinsky Theatre. In 1920, back in London, he joined the music staff at the Old Vic, which at that period presented opera as well as plays. In 1931, when Sadler’s Wells Theatre opened as an extension of that management, he became principal conductor of opera, and was largely responsible for the development of the company’s repertory and standards. He shared with Coates the first performances in Britain of Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Tale of Tsar Saltan...


José Antonio González

(b Bologna, c1770; d ?Mexico, after 1825). Italian composer and conductor. He was probably a pupil at the Bologna Conservatory and later studied with Paisiello and Cimarosa. In 1798 he was musical director at La Scala and his first opera, La citta nuova, was performed there. He went to Barcelona in 1803 and then lived in Madrid (1803–11) and Cuba (1811–22), composing several Spanish operas. In 1823 he was living in Mexico as a piano teacher and composer.

all lost

MDCP Madrid, Teatro de los Caños del Peral


(b St Petersburg, 29 May/June 10, 1893; d Kiev, Feb 6, 1939). Russian conductor and composer . He studied at the St Petersburg Conservatory with Lyadov and Shteynberg (composition) and Nikolay Tcherepnin (conducting). Having led the orchestra at the Mariinsky Theatre he was conductor from 1918, and music director from 1925 to 1936. A talented opera conductor, he achieved a sensitive integration of voices and orchestra to dramatic as well as musical purpose. Under his direction the theatre staged notable productions of The Love for Three Oranges, Wozzeck and the original version of Boris Godunov between 1926 and 1928. In 1936 he became artistic director and chief conductor at the Kiev Opera, where he staged many operas by Ukrainian composers. He composed several works himself, and wrote articles on the problems of operatic dramaturgy.

I. Belza: ‘Vladimir Alexandrovich Dranishnikov’, Voprosï muzïkal’no-ispolnitel’skogo iskusstva [Problems in the Art of Musical Performance], v, ed. ...


Piero Rattalino and Noël Goodwin

(b Buenos Aires, July 18, 1927). Italian conductor and composer, son of Benvenuto Franci. He studied at the Rome Conservatory and in 1952 attended Fernando Previtali’s conducting courses at the Accademia di S Cecilia. At first a conductor only of symphonic music, he made his operatic début in ...


Igor Vajda

(b Spišský Štiavnik, Nov 20, 1918; d Piešt’any, July 7, 1967). Slovak composer and conductor . He studied composition with Alexander Moyzes at the Bratislava Academy (1934–9) and went on to study conducting with Bernardino Molinari at the Accademia di S Cecilia (1939–42). He began his conducting career at the Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava (1942–9), was head of the Košice Opera (1949–52) and then chief opera conductor in Bratislava from 1953. His two operas are in a neo-romantic style. Martin a slnko (‘Martin and the Sun’; Bratislava, 18 Jan 1975), is a children’s opera to a libretto by Alexandra Braxatorisová after Branislav Kriška. The story is based on Slovak folk tales and the music draws inspiration from a number of styles, from Classicism to full-blown, especially Russian, Romanticism, from verismo to expressionism, and includes some symphonic jazz, all against a background of Slovak folksong. ...


Ruth Pincoe

(b Norwich, April 11, 1912). Canadian composer, theorist and conductor of English origin. He moved to Canada in 1928, becoming a Canadian citizen in 1930. His composition teachers have included Alfred Whitehead in Montreal and Paul Hindemith at Yale University (1952–3). He also studied conducting with Willem van Otterloo in Utrecht (1956). From 1946 until his retirement in 1977, he taught at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. He also conducted the Queen’s SO (1946–54), and founded and conducted both the Kingston Choral Society (1953–7) and the New SO of Kingston (1954–7).

George’s music is in a 20th-century idiom characterized by traditional formal structures and modal harmonies, and influenced by his studies of ethnomusicology and the structural aspects of music. His operas are large-scale works based on historical events with librettos adapted from contemporary writing. He has also composed many choral pieces....


Stephen Banfield

(b London, May 26, 1893; d Hillingdon, Middlesex, June 13, 1962). English composer and conductor. Both his father and grandfather, of Belgian origin, held the post of principal conductor of the Carl Rosa Opera Company. After studying in Bruges, Liverpool and at the RCM, where Stanford taught him composition, he began his career as a professional violinist; he soon followed in the family footsteps by conducting opera, however, and as assistant to Beecham from 1916 frequently deputized for him on little or no rehearsal. By early 1922 he was conducting the Carl Rosa company at Covent Garden and in 1923 appeared there with the British National Opera Company.

From 1923 until 1947 Goossens spent part of each year in the USA, first conducting the Rochester PO, then (from 1931) the Cincinnati SO. In 1947 he moved to Australia as director of the New South Wales Conservatorium and resident conductor of the Sydney SO. His pioneer work included plans for the Sydney Opera House, which, however, were not to achieve fruition until more than ten years after his death. He returned to England in ...