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(b Pisky, near Khar′kiv, 8/Sept 20, 1876; d Paris, Jan 8, 1945). Ukrainian composer and pianist. Aged ten he was sent, along with his brother Yakiv (later known as the composer Stepovy), to sing in the choir of the Imperial Chapel in St Petersburg. It was during his time there (1886–95) that he began to compose under the influence of his teachers Balakirev and Lyapunov. He finished studies with Rimsky-Korsakov and Lyadov at the St Petersburg Conservatory in 1901, the year in which the latter conducted the first performance of the Lyric Poem, op.20. Akimenko then became the director of a music school in Tbilisi (1901–03). He performed widely as a pianist, particularly in France and Switzerland, and lived for a while in Paris (1903–06) before returning to Khar′kiv. In 1914 he was invited to teach composition and theory at the St Petersburg Conservatory, a post he held until ...

Article

Juan Orrego-Salas

revised by Luis Merino

(b Santiago, Sept 2, 1911; d Santiago, Aug 2, 1954). Chilean composer and pianist. He studied with Allende for composition and Renard for the piano at the Santiago National Conservatory (1923–35), where he then held appointments as coach at the opera department (1935), assistant professor of the piano (1937), professor of analysis (1940), and director (1945). At the same time he taught at the Liceo Manuel de Salas in Santiago. He was secretary-general to the Instituto de Extensión Musical (from 1941), a founder-director of the Escuela Moderna de Música, Santiago (1940), and a member of various arts societies. In 1943 he went to the USA as a guest of the Institute of International Education and in 1953 he was in Europe for the performance of his Wind Sextet at the ISCM Festival. His early compositions show the influences of French music and Chilean folklore; from the late 1940s his work became more Expressionist and abstract....

Article

Mary Cyr

[not Jean-Baptiste]

(b Lunel, 1710; d Paris, Dec 1, 1772). French haute-contre singer, music teacher, cellist and composer. His début in 1733 at the Paris Opéra, according to La Borde, was in the monologue of Pélée, ‘Ciel! en voyant ce temple redoutable’ from Act 3 of Collasse's Thétis et Pélée (1689). He soon joined the Italian troupe, performing in divertissements between the acts of operas. After three years he returned to the Opéra and took several minor roles between 1737 and 1745 in Rameau's works: Un Athlète in Castor et Pollux (1737), Un Songe in Dardanus (1739), Lycurgue in Fêtes d'Hébé (1739), and Tacmas (replacing the well-known haute-contre Tribou) in the third entrée of Les Indes galantes (1743 revival). In 1743 he sang the title role in the première of Boismortier's ballet-comique, Don Quichotte chez la Duchesse, with the famous soprano Marie Fel as Altisidore. Two years later he retired from the opera to devote himself to teaching and playing the cello. He became first cellist of the orchestra at the Comédie-Italienne in ...

Article

Rachel Samet

(b Philadelphia, PA, Oct 30, 1886; d New York, NY, Jan 25, 1962).

American pianist, composer, singer, and teacher. His early musical studies were with his father, Samuel James Diton, a professional musician. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1909 and became the first African American pianist to make a cross-country tour of the United States. A protégé of E(mma) Azalia Hackley, he received a scholarship to study in Munich, Germany from 1910–11. After returning to the United States, he taught at Paine College, Georgia (1911–14), Wiley University, Texas (1914–15) and Talladega College, Alabama (1915–18). Seeking a more active musical community, he returned to the Northeast, where he continued to perform as a pianist. He accompanied singers such as Marian Anderson and Jules Bledsoe, and taught privately in Philadelphia and New York City. Also an active composer, he gained acclaim for his solo and choral transcriptions of Negro spirituals and won many prizes for his compositions, including a Harmon award for composition in ...

Article

Claude V. Palisca

[Vincentio, Vincenzio]

(b S Maria a Monte, Tuscany, probably in the late 1520s; d Florence, bur. July 2, 1591). Italian theorist, composer, lutenist, singer and teacher. He was the leader of the movement to revive through monody the ancient Greek ideal of the union of music and poetry.

Galilei was probably born later than his traditionally accepted date of birth of about 1520. As a youth he studied the lute. It was probably his playing that attracted the attention of Giovanni de' Bardi, his principal patron, who facilitated his theoretical studies with Zarlino in Venice, probably about 1563. By that time he had settled in Pisa, where in 1562 he married a member of a local noble family. The scientist Galileo (who was born in 1564) was the first of his six or seven children; another was the lutenist Michelagnolo Galilei (b 18 Dec 1575; d 3 Jan 1631...

Article

George Grove

revised by David Charlton

(Pasquale)

(b Vienna, Jan 1, 1825; d Vienna, Dec 20, 1890). Austrian violinist, singer, composer and teacher. He began his career as a violinist, as a pupil of Mayseder, and at the age of 12 performed his own Violin Concerto in E minor, dedicated to Spohr, at the Vienna Redoutensaal. After a period touring in Italy he went to Paris, where Rubini and Meyerbeer urged him to become a singer. In 1843, after study with Rubini and Bordogni, he made a successful début at Padua in Donizetti’s La regina di Golconda, appearing later in Verona and Genoa. In 1847 he went to London to appear with Jullien, and from 1850 to 1861 he made several provincial concert tours in England with Grisi, Alboni, Mario and others. He then settled in London, where he taught for many years at the RAM, retiring a few months before his death. Goldberg was commissioned by the Italian government in ...

Article

Philip Lieson Miller

(b Brooklyn, NY, Jan 4, 1887; d Chapel Hill, NC, Sept 4, 1963). American pianist, singing teacher, and composer. He was the son of the sculptor Robert P. Golde. He studied piano with Hugo Troetschel in Brooklyn, and credited the development of his tastes to attending performances at the Metropolitan Opera and Walter Damrosch’s children’s concerts. At Dartmouth College he wrote a three-act musical show for his class prom, the success of which decided him in favor of a musical career. After graduating in 1910, he spent three years at the Vienna Conservatory studying counterpoint and composition with Robert Fuchs, as well as voice and score reading. He returned to New York and accompanied many well-known musicians, including Elman, Thibaud, Casals, Salmond, Tertis, Rethberg, Jeritza, Gerhardt, Teyte, Garden, Bampton, Seagle, Bonelli, Tibbett, and Melchior. His song At Nightfall (1918) was the first of many that were to become part of the repertories of famous singers; he also wrote piano music. Golde conducted the De Feo Opera Company in ...

Article

Andrew Lamb

[Rhodes (née Guy), Helen M.]

(b Château Hardelot, nr Boulogne, c1858; d London, Jan 7, 1936). French composer, pianist and singing teacher. She was the daughter of an English sea captain and the singer Helen Guy. At the age of 15 she was taken to Paris, where she studied at the Conservatoire under Renaud Maury, and success came in her early 20s with the song Sans toi (words by Victor Hugo). Gounod and Massenet were among those who encouraged her in composition, and those who introduced her songs included Nellie Melba, Victor Maurel and Pol Plançon, as well as Emma Calvé, with whom she went to the USA in 1896 as accompanist. After marrying an Englishman she settled in London, where she continued to produce sentimental songs, about 300 in all, notable for their easy melody and typical dramatic climax. They include Three Green Bonnets (H.L. Harris; 1901), Because (E. Teschemacher; ...

Article

Denise Launay

revised by David Ledbetter

(b c1600; d after 1664). French composer, lutenist, singer and teacher. He was active in Paris at least from 1630 to 1648. He was best known in his day as a private teacher: in 1643 Gantez spoke of ‘Vincent, Métru and Massé, the three most famous and famished masters in Paris’ (his actual words are ‘fameux et affamez’). Macé’s chansons and airs, written in syllabic style, have affinities with those of Bataille but lack the depth of feeling of Antoine Boësset’s. His Cantiques spirituels, in French and for two voices, have remarkable dramatic qualities which foreshadow those of late 17th-century French recitative. His Reigles très faciles is simply a little manual for teaching purposes. According to La Borde he also composed ‘rather a good mass and several motets’, but these are now lost.

published in Paris

Article

J. Bunker Clark

revised by E. Douglas Bomberger

(b Germany, c1800; d Brooklyn, NY, Sep 11, 1884). American composer, teacher, singer, and pianist of German birth, He appeared in public concerts in New York from 1819 to about 1834 as a singer and pianist, and was a pianist for the first and second seasons of the New York Philharmonic Symphony Society in 1842–4. His compositions for piano, some of which are in the Library of Congress, were published between the 1820s and the 1850s and include some half dozen sets of fine and technically demanding variations. He also wrote polkas, waltzes, cotillions, and other dance music, and a few songs, some with chorus. He may have been related to raymond Meetz, another pianist, teacher, and composer active in New York.

(selective list)

All published in New York, n.d., unless otherwise indicated; estimated dates of publication are given in brackets.