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Article

John Koegel

(b Puerto Príncipe, Cuba, ?Nov 28, 1844; d Havana, ?Dec 31, 1918). Pianist, music teacher, arranger, conductor, composer, and lawyer of Cuban birth, naturalized American. Born into a prominent family in Puerto Príncipe, Cuba (present-day Camagüey), Agramonte strongly supported the movement for independence from Spain. He studied music and the law in Cuba, Spain, and France. After vocal studies with Enrico Delle Sedie (1822–1907) and François Delsarte (1811–71) at the Paris Conservatory, he immigrated to the United States, settling in New York in 1869, where he remained until after Cuban independence in 1898. He became a US citizen in 1886.

In the 1870s and 1880s, Agramonte taught music at the Academy of Mount Saint Vincent in the Bronx. In the 1890s he taught with Dudley Buck and William Mason at the Metropolitan College of Music and ran his own School of Opera and Oratorio at his home, teaching singers such as ...

Article

Viorel Cosma

revised by Ruxandra Arzoiu

(b Bucharest, 2/Aug 14, 1893; d Bucharest, Feb 18, 1959). Romanian composer, pianist, conductor, teacher, music critic, and director of music programmes. A leading figure of the first half of the 20th century, he laid the foundation of the Romanian school in music, concert life, and musical journalism. He studied with A. Castaldi, D. Dinicu, D.G. Kiriac, and E. Saegiu at the Bucharest Conservatory (1903–11), completing his education with two periods of study in Paris (1913–14, 1923–4), where he studied with d’Indy at the Schola Cantorum and with Paul Vidal at the Conservatoire. A remarkable accompanist, he worked with Enescu, Thibaud, Mainardi, Moodie, and others during the period 1919–45. As a conductor he always achieved a soberly balanced performance; he conducted more than 1500 performances at the Romanian Opera in Bucharest (1921–59), where he specialized in the French repertory (Bizet, Massenet, and Gounod). In his capacities as conductor of the Romanian Philharmonic Society, and as conductor and artistic manager of the Romanian RSO, he did much to encourage Romanian composers. He was also active as a music critic for Romanian and French reviews. Much of his compositional work was done during his youth, including ...

Article

Stuart Campbell

( b Nizhniy Novgorod, Dec 21, 1836/Jan 2, 1837; d St Petersburg, 16/May 29, 1910). Russian composer, conductor, teacher and pianist .

Balakirev was the son of a minor government official. His musical education began with his mother’s piano tuition and proceeded to a course of summer lessons in Moscow with Aleksandr Dubuque. At that time the leading musical figure and patron in Nizhniy Novgorod (and author of books on Mozart and Beethoven) was Aleksandr Ulïbïshev, and it was through his household pianist and musical organizer Karl Eisrich that Balakirev’s induction to music, embracing the crucial discoveries of Chopin and Glinka, continued. Eisrich and Ulïbïshev provided Balakirev with further opportunities to play, read and listen to music, and to rehearse other musicians in orchestral and choral works, including, when he was 14, Mozart’s Requiem. His first surviving compositions date from the age of 15. Balakirev’s formal education began at the Gymnasium in Nizhniy Novgorod and continued after his mother’s death in ...

Article

Kara Gardner

(b Detroit, March 28, 1866; d Chicago, Dec 6, 1945). American violinist, conductor, musical director, teacher, and composer. Bendix was born to Jewish parents who had emigrated from Germany. His father William was a music teacher. Bendix began formal study at the Cincinnati College of Music where, at the age of twelve, he performed with the college orchestra, directed by Theodore Thomas. This began a long association between the two men, leading to Bendix’s appointment as first violinist and concertmaster of the Theodore Thomas Orchestra in 1886. In August 1893 Thomas resigned his position as music director of the Chicago World’s Columbian Exposition following a series of unsuccessful concerts. Bendix took Thomas’s place as conductor of the Exposition orchestra. This created tension between the two men, and Bendix left the Thomas orchestra in 1896. He went on to serve as conductor at the Manhattan Opera House and to conduct orchestras for world fairs in St. Louis (...

Article

Joachim Braun

(Mikhaylovich)

(b Kovalyovka, South Ukraine, 7/April 19, 1863; d Moscow, Jan 21, 1931). Russian conductor, pianist, composer and teacher, uncle of Heinrich Neuhaus. He studied the piano with Stein and composition with Rimsky-Korsakov at the St Petersburg Conservatory, where he taught the piano from his graduation in 1885 until 1918 (excluding the years 1905–11), being appointed a professor in 1897. From 1895 to 1911 he was also conductor at the Mariinsky Theatre in St Petersburg, where he gave the premières of Rimsky-Korsakov's Servilia (1902) and Legend of the Invisible City of Kitezh (1907) and the Russian première of Tristan und Isolde (1899). In 1908 he conducted the Russian seasons in Paris, achieving wide recognition as a conductor and, more especially, as a pianist. He lived and worked in close contact with Anton Rubinstein, Rimsky-Korsakov, Glazunov, Rachmaninoff and Chaliapin. His performing style, influenced by Rubinstein's, was heroically brilliant and lyrically melodious; he gave the first performances of many piano works by Glazunov, Lyadov and Arensky, among others. He was well known as a teacher, first in St Petersburg, then in Kiev (...

Article

Viorel Cosma

(b Iaşi, 9/May 21, 1899; d Sinaia, May 26, 1992). Romanian composer, violinist, teacher and conductor. He studied the violin in Iaşi (1908–12) with Eduard Caudella and in Craiova (1912–16) with Jean Bobescu and then entered the Schola Cantorum in Paris (1920–24, 1926–7) where he studied with Nestor Lejeune (violin), d’Indy (composition) and Paul le Flem (harmony). After starting his career as a solo violinist he became professor of violin at the conservatories of Cernăuţi and Braşov. In 1935 he was appointed conductor of the Radio Symphony Orchestra in Bucharest where he remained until 1972. Bobescu’s compositions range in theme from historical and biblical subjects to satirical comedy. Though post-Romantic in structure, his music has a pronounced lyrical character: the melodic writing is essentially Romanian but it is clothed in a traditional European harmonic language. His lively orchestration displays a perfect handling of timbres, especially of strings, which he used to achieve impressionistic shading in the operas....

Article

Keith Moore

(b Memphis, Jan 21, 1944). American composer, pianist, conductor and musicologist. He studied the piano with Roy McAllister at the University of Alabama (BM 1965), with Sophia Rosoff, and with Soulima Stravinsky at the University of Illinois (MM 1966), where he also studied composition with Ben Johnson (DMA, 1971) and had contact with Hamm, Hiller, Kessler and Brün. He served on the music faculty at Illinois (1968–74) before joining the staff at Wesleyan University. He was a member of the editorial committee of New World Records (1974–8), founding chairman of New England Sacred Harp Singing (1976) and has held visiting professorships at Middlebury College, Bucknell University and the University of Michigan. In 1980 he was Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Studies in American Music at Brooklyn College.

In 1968 Bruce founded the American Music Group (AMG), an ensemble innovative in its dedication to American music of all eras. AMG recorded the music of Anthony Philip Heinrich for Vanguard, toured widely in the United States and, under Bruce’s direction, gave the 20th-century première of Bristow’s ...

Article

Stan Britt

revised by Barry Kernfeld

(b Dumfries, Scotland, April 21, 1933; d London, Feb 25, 2009). English trumpeter, flugelhorn player, bandleader, composer, writer, and teacher, brother of Mike Carr. His mother played ukulele and banjo. Carr grew up in northeast England, where he took piano lessons from the age of 12 and taught himself trumpet from 1950. After studying at King’s College, Newcastle upon Tyne (1952–60, degree, English literature, diploma, education) he served in the army (1956–8), then played with his brother in a band, the Emcee Five (1960 – August 1962). He briefly joined Don Rendell in November 1962 and, after recovering from illness, formed a long-lived quintet with Rendell from 1963 to July 1969; during this period he also worked with Joe Harriott (recording in 1969), Don Byas, and John McLaughlin. In September 1969 he formed his own band, Nucleus, which rapidly became recognized internationally for its experiments with jazz-rock. As a result of its performance at the Montreux International Jazz Festival in ...

Article

Gerald R. Benjamin

(Antonio)

(b Ahualulco, San Luis Potosí, Jan 28, 1875; d San Angél, Sept 9, 1965). Mexican composer, theorist, conductor, violinist, inventor and teacher. Born to an American family during a seemingly peaceful period of Mexico’s history, he received his early musical education at the National Conservatory in Mexico City, where he studied the violin with Pedro Manzano, composition with Melesio Morales and acoustics with Francisco Ortega y Fonseca. Between 1899 and 1905 he was in Europe, where he divided his time between the conservatories of Ghent and Leipzig; at Ghent he studied the violin with Albert Zimmer, and at Leipzig he was a pupil of Jadassohn (composition), Becker (violin) and Sitt (conducting), and led the Gewandhaus Orchestra under Nikisch. During these formative years he shaped his critical philosophy of the practical application and examination of all theoretical precepts. The results were revolutionary, and led him to a lifelong attempt at effecting greater accuracy among the discrepant postulates of physicists, mathematicians and music theorists, and at helping performers to apply, or at least understand, them (see his ...

Article

Steven Ledbetter and Victor Fell Yellin

(b Lowell, MA, Nov 13, 1854; d Boston, MA, April 4, 1931). American composer, teacher, conductor, pianist and organist. He was a leading figure of the Second School of New England composers. Highly regarded in his lifetime as a composer, he was also largely responsible for the effective reorganization of the New England Conservatory and was one of the most influential teachers in American music.

Steven Ledbetter and Victor Fell Yellin

Because of his mother’s early death and his father’s remarriage, Chadwick was left to his own resources at an early age. He thus developed the self-reliance and independence that were to characterize his music as well as his academic life. He learned music from his older brother and by the age of 15 was active as an organist. From this time on he had to pay for his own musical instruction, as his father, a businessman, was opposed to his pursuing a career in music. He did not complete high school, but went to work as a clerk in his father's insurance office. By ...