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Philip J. Kass

(b New York, NY, May 29, 1877; d Chicago, IL, May 9, 1955). American writer, publisher, and expert on violins. He studied violin and viola as a boy, and from 1893 to 1926 he worked for John Friedrich & Brother in New York as secretary, treasurer, purchaser, writer of catalogs, and publicity manager. From 1926 to 1937 he was with the Rudolph Wurlitzer Co., working first as assistant to the violin expert J.C. Freeman in New York and later as manager of the violin department in the Chicago store. He prepared catalogs for the company, including a famous one of 1931 that listed an enormous collection of violins and had a separate section devoted entirely to bows. In 1937 he opened his own shop in Evanston, Illinois, and began publishing a magazine, Violins. In 1941 his business was bought by the Chicago firm William Lewis & Son, with whom he worked as a salesman and magazine editor until his death....

Article

(b Luxembourg, Aug 16, 1884; d New York, Aug 19, 1967). American writer, publisher, and inventor. In 1904 he emigrated to America, where in 1908 he founded the first of a series of radio magazines (including Radio-Craft) which he wrote for and edited. He later turned to science fiction magazines (from ...

Article

Dietrich Kilian

revised by Hermann Fischer

(b Stellingen, nr Hamburg, Dec 17, 1894; d Hamburg, Nov 29, 1959). German writer, publisher and authority on organ building. In 1921, with Gottlieb Harms, he founded the Ugrino religious community; among its aims was the revival and publication of early music through its own publishing house, founded in 1923, to which (apart from his years of exile to Denmark, 1933–45) Jahnn belonged and of which he became the sole owner in 1956. His rebuilding in 1923 of the Schnitger organ in Jacobikirche, Hamburg, became the model for the Orgelbewegung, whose first congress he organized with Günther Ramin in Hamburg in 1925. As co-founder of the German Council of Organists in 1927, he directed the council’s experimental section from 1931 to 1933 and was organ consultant for Hamburg; during his exile in Bornholm he was adviser to the Copenhagen firm of Frobenius. Over 100 organs were restored or newly built according to his plans, including the Klopstock organ at Altona-Ottensen, the organ of the Pädagogische Akademie, Kiel, the Maximilian organ in Düsseldorf, the Cavaillé-Coll organ in Metz Cathedral, the organ at St Petri, Malmö, and the organ at the German broadcasting service in Berlin. Several of the new instruments explored Jahnn’s original ideas for the development of the instrument, including those at the Lichtwarkschule, Hamburg, built by Kemper in ...

Article

Leonard B. Smith and Raoul F. Camus

[Brockton, Lester]

(b Southville, MA, Oct 25, 1879; d Palisade, NJ, March 16, 1955). American composer, conductor, editor and arranger. He studied at the New England Conservatory and was playing the violin with professional symphony orchestras in Boston by the age of 16. From 1896 to 1910 he conducted various theatre orchestras, including the orchestra of the Teatro Payret, Havana, then one of the largest theatres in the western hemisphere. He later moved to New York, where he wrote arrangements for Victor Herbert, John Philip Sousa, Edwin Franko Goldman, Percy Grainger, Henry Hadley and George M. Cohan. In 1913 he became editor-in-chief of band and orchestral music at Carl Fischer, a position he held for 35 years. His textbook, The American Band Arranger, was published by Fischer in 1920. He taught at the Ernest Williams School, Columbia University and New York University. He also conducted his band, Symphony in Gold, for NBC radio. More than 3000 of his arrangements and compositions were published, some under the pseudonym Lester Brockton. The Heritage of the March series of recordings includes a sample of his work. Lake’s autobiography is entitled ...