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Nicholas Tochka

(Gjoka)

(b Sevastopol, Crimean Peninsula, May 22, 1910; d Tirana, Albania, Oct 6, 1985). Albanian pianist, arranger, pedagogue, and composer. Born in an Albanian-speaking enclave in Sevastopol on the Crimean Peninsula, she received early training in ballet and piano while growing up in a middle-class merchant family. After relocating to Korça, Albania in 1932, Gjoka became the primary accompanist for the local salon culture, which included the art-song singers Kristaq Antoniu, Mihal Ciko, Tefta Tashko-Koço, and Maria Kraja. She received a degree in piano performance from the Athens Conservatory in 1936. Following World War II, she taught at Tirana’s ‘Jordan Misja’ Arts Lyceum from its founding in 1946, and at the State Conservatory from 1962. In addition to training a generation of Albanian pianists, Gjoka was a tireless promoter of folk songs. During the socialist period, she was among the first women to collect folk songs, which she often arranged as elegant art songs for voice and piano. She also held an appointment at the Theater of Opera and Ballet in Tirana between ...

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Angelina Petrova

(b Pazardzhik, Bulgaria, Oct 27, 1952). Bulgarian composer, pianist, harpsichord player, and pedagogue. He graduated in piano (under Prof. Sturshenov) in 1977 and in composition under Prof. Hadzhiev. He continued with postgraduate studies under Yvonne Lefébure, Zuzana Růžičková (1983), and Milan Schlechta (1977). He is a prize winner from the A. Casagrande International Piano Competition in Terni, Italy (1976), and holder of the third prize in the piano duo category (1980). He is a keen performer of 17th- and 18th-century music as well as of 20th-century works.

He is a professor of composition (2000) and has also served as Dean of the Faculty of Instrumental Music at the National Music Academy in Sofia (1993–9). He is a composer with an individual style in the sphere of tonal and modal experimentation that combines folklore and features of the contemporary instrumental score. His Piano Concerto no.2 was awarded a prize at the New Music Festival in St Petersburg (...

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Ivan Čavlović

(b Kishinev, Russia, Jan 10, 1914; d Sarajevo, March 25, 1998). Bosnian pianist and pedagogue of Russian origin. Blum began her piano studies in her hometown of Kishinev, continuing them at the Prague State Conservatory, where in 1939 she graduated from the Master School for pianists in the class of Viléma Kurza and Jana Hermana. In Prague she met her future husband, the engineer and eventual mayor of Sarajevo Emerik Blum, with whom she moved to Sarajevo. In Sarajevo she performed as a soloist and a chamber musician and served as one of the founders of Collegium Artisticum, a society for the promotion of modern art. In 1945 she became a piano teacher at the newly established Music High School in Sarajevo. From 1948 to 1952 she worked as a music educator and a pianist in Belgrade. In 1955 she co-founded and became a professor at the Academy of Music in Sarajevo. She served two terms as dean, from ...

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Gary Galván

(Ellen )

(b Schenectady, NY, March 17, 1949). American composer, educator, and pianist. She studied briefly at the University of California at Santa Barbara and Michigan State University before settling at the University of Michigan to complete a BMus in music theory and embark on graduate studies in composition with George Balch Wilson, leslie Bassett , and wallace Berry . Immersed in electronic and experimental music, she also worked with the recently retired ross lee Finney and distinguished herself as the first woman to earn a DMA in composition from the University of Michigan in 1977.

Fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation, the Alliance Française, and a Rackham Prize enabled her to study with Max Deutsch and Eugene Kurtz in Paris and Vienna. Other notable honors include a Sigvald Thompson Composition Competition Prize for her first orchestral piece and a Sundance Institute Film Composers’ Lab Fellowship to work with Bruce Boughton, Henry Mancini...

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Sophia Kompotiati

(b Athens, Greece, 1921; d Athens, March 6, 2005). Greek pianist and piano teacher. From a very young age she showed significant musical talent. She graduated from the National Conservatory of Athens and, with a scholarship from the Athens Municipality, she continued her studies at the Academy of St. Cecilia, Rome, with the Italian composer, conductor, and pianist Alfredo Casella. In 1948 she won the Silver medal at the International Hague piano competition. Later, she continued her studies in Paris under the soloist Marguerite Long. In 1949 she received the 1st prize in the Long-Thibault–Crespin Competition.

Numerous appearances in Europe, the Balkans, Egypt, and the USA followed, where she presented numerous Greek works for piano. When she moved back to Athens from Paris (1952), the Greek conductor Philoctetes Economides asked her to prepare Manolis Kalomiris’ Piano Concerto. The work was presented with great success under the direction of Economides....

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Antigona Rădulescu

(b Bucharest, Romania, 2/Dec 15, 1887; d Bucharest, Aug 9, 1991). Romanian pianist and pedagogue. Displaying unique artistic inclinations, she studied at the Music and Declamation Conservatory in Bucharest (1894–1901), in the piano class of Ștefan Sihleanu and Eduard Wachmann. She was accepted at the National Conservatory in Paris, where she specialized in the piano with Isidor Phillippe and Alphonse Duvernoy (1903–7). She first distinguished herself as a concert performer, in Romania and Europe. In 1950 she started her didactic career, at the level of musical medium secondary education, then at the Music Conservatory in Bucharest (1953–66). Besides literature (fiction and memoirs), she also wrote musical criticism (reviews, conferences, radio shows). With her unique longevity, she witnessed a century of historic and artistic events. She was part of the Romanian intellectual elite, closely knew the European cultural milieu of the first half of the twentieth century, and has adapted to the political changes implemented by the communist regime in Romania, surviving in the end, its fall....

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Martina Bratić

(b Krapinica, Croatia, Sept 11, 1874; d Zagreb, Croatia, Dec 12, 1948). Croatian composer, organist, music educator, theoretician, and writer. Dugan had his first musical experience during his choir lessons in an archiepiscopal secondary school. He then studied theology and took organ lessons with the principal organist of the Zagreb Cathedral, Vatroslav Kolander. In 1893 he started mathematics and physics studies but graduated from the Hochschule für Musik in Berlin in 1908 (composition with Robert Kahn, conducting with Max Bruch, and organ with H. Becker). He became a director of the Croatian Music Institute (1908) and was named Zagreb Cathedral’s principal organist in 1912 (the position which he held until his death). From 1897 to 1920 he also worked as a secondary school teacher, giving lessons in mathematics and physics. At the Zagreb Music Academy he taught music theory, composition, and the organ (1920–1941); here his most important contribution was amplifying the foundation of, and developing the curriculum for, the counterpoint and fugue courses. He was also active as a conductor of, among others, the Croatian Choral Society, Kolo, and he periodically wrote music reviews. He worked as an editor of the music section in the sacral music journal ...

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Ruth M. Wilson

revised by Nicholas Michael Butler

(b Eschwege, Germany, Nov 24, 1757; d Charleston, SC, Nov 10, 1833). Organist, pianist, composer, and teacher of German birth. He came to the United States as a musician with Hessian troops. After the Revolutionary War he settled in Richmond, Virginia, where he probably was organist at St. John’s Episcopal Church. He moved to Charleston in 1786 as clerk, organist, and schoolmaster of St. John’s Lutheran Church, then in 1809 became organist of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, a post he held until his death. His son Jacob Eckhard Jr. later succeeded him at St. John’s; when he died in 1833, he was succeeded in turn by another son, George Eckhard, formerly organist of St. Philip’s Episcopal Church. Eckhard also directed the anniversary music at the Charleston Orphan House from the institution’s inception in 1790 until relinquishing that duty to his sons in the early 19th century.

In addition, Eckhard performed as a pianist in sonatas, concerti, and chamber works at a number of concerts in Charleston over a span of four decades. He also appeared in concert as a vocalist, violist, and conductor. Eckhard led the performance of a “grand overture” by Ludwig van Beethoven on ...

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Lilia Stoytcheva

(b Sofia, Bulgaria, Aug 9, 1914; d Aug 4, 1989). Bulgarian pianist and teacher. A significant figure in Bulgarian musical culture, Encheva is famous not only in Europe, but in Asia and Australia. Encheva mastered piano performance at an early age; her first introduction to the instrument came from her mother, Nevena Encheva.

Early in her career Encheva received her first award and an Italian scholarship with the opportunity to study in Milan. Encheva was one of the most talented students of the famous Italian maestro and piano professor Renzo Lorenzone. Encheva graduated from the Italian Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory at the age of 16. Her musical talent was so impressive that later she continued her studies under other famous pedagogues, including Marcel Ciampi in Paris and Edwin Fisher in Berlin.

Encheva was an award recipient at numerous international competitions, including the 1936 Vienna International Piano Competition, along with other accomplished pianists in Europe from that time, such as Jacob Flier and Emil Gilels. Her performance of Beethoven’s 4th Piano Concerto, conducted by Karl Böhm, was so memorable that the critics called her a ‘brand-new Slavonic talent’. Encheva’s musical talent and pedagogical acumen was not limited to Europe, and in the 1980s she was able to apply her multiple talents as musical interpreter and professor at the prestigious Muzashino Academy in Tokyo. She was internationally acclaimed as a concert pianist and pedagogue, as well as a jury member at more than 50 of the most prestigious international piano competitions, including the Queen Elizabeth, Chopin, Tchaikovsky, Robert Schumann, J. S. Bach, and Busoni competitions....

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Christian Carey

(b Denver, CO, Nov 25, 1959). American composer, pianist, and teacher. She grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, and began formal composition studies in 1977 with Robert Beadell at the University of Nebraska. She graduated from the University of Colorado (BM 1982) and Boston University (MM 1984, DMA 1989). Her principal composition teachers included cecil Effinger , Charles Eakin, joyce Mekeel , Bunita Marcus, and bernard Rands . In 1986 and 1988 she was a Fellow in Composition at the Tanglewood Music Center, where she worked with Oliver Knussen and Hans Werner Henze. The latter helped secure her an invitation from the City of Munich to compose a puppet opera, Hero und Leander, for its 1992 Biennale for New Music Theater. She was also a resident at the MacDowell Colony (1998, 1999) and composer-in-residence for the Radius Ensemble (2009–10). Among her awards are a Fromm Foundation Commission and the Lee Ettleson Composition Prize. She has also received commissions from CORE Ensemble, ALEA III, Sequitur New Music Ensemble, and the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra of Boston. She is an active pianist and plays prepared piano with guitarist David Tronzo in the Epstein/Tronzo Duo. She has taught at Berklee College of Music since ...

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Irina Boga

(b Iaşi, Romania, 1874; d Bucharest, Romania, 1961). Romanian pianist and teacher, considered one of the founders of the modern Romanian school of piano. The daughter of the historian Constantin Erbiceanu, she began studying the piano at five with her mother and continued with Z. Lubicz Skibowski. At 17, she was admitted to the Leipzig Conservatory, where she studied the piano with Carl Reinecke and music theory and composition with S. Jadassohn. She graduated in 1898 with the Ehrenvoll distinction and in the next two years she continued her studies in Paris with Moritz Moszkowski. In 1900 she made her début in Erard concert hall, thus paving the way for a long string of tours and international concerts. At the same time, she studied musicology at the Philosophy Faculty of Berlin University. After World War I, Constanţa Erbiceanu returned to Romania and in 1924 she was appointed piano professor at the Royal Conservatory of Music and Dramatic Arts in Bucharest where she was intensely active for 14 years, laying the practical foundations for the modern Romanian piano school. Among the excellent students she taught were Valentin Gheorghiu, Silvia Şerbescu, Lydia Cristian, Magda Nicolau, Irina Lăzărescu, Theodor Bălan, Carola Grindea, and Ana Pitiş....

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Paula Morgan

revised by Jonas Westover

(b New York, NY, Oct 5, 1879; d New York, NY, June 1, 1951). American author, educator, and pianist. He studied piano with Carl Walter and composition and orchestration with Edward MacDowell. After completing his education at Columbia University (BA 1900, MA 1901, PhD 1903), he pursued a distinguished career there as professor of English (1909–37). A noted author of novels and essays, Erskine also maintained a lifelong interest in music. Erskine’s novels, especially The Private Life of Helen of Troy (1925) and Galahad (1926), established his reputation as a writer. His poetry was also widely published. He studied piano at an early age and also, beginning in 1923, under ernest Hutcheson , with whom he worked at the Juilliard School. He appeared as piano soloist with the New York SO and the Baltimore Civic Orchestra. He was president of the Juilliard School (...

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Anya Laurence

(Rubottom )

(b Jackson Heights, NY, Nov 13, 1941). American concert pianist and lecturer. She graduated from Trinity College of Music, London. As a pianist, she was known for her wide repertory and became an early champion of American and women composers. She has performed across the globe, appeared as soloist with many major symphony orchestras, and appeared in recital with her first husband, Jules Eskin, principal cellist of the Boston Symphony. In addition to her engagement with European music from Beethoven to the contemporary Czech composer Vitezslava Kapralova, she has recorded the music of many Americans, including Amy Beach, Marion Bauer, George Chadwick, Arthur Foote, Joseph Lamb, and Ruth Crawford. Albany, Classical Arts, and Koch International are a few of the labels on which her recordings appear. In 2007, in honor of the hundredth anniversary of the composer’s death, she played Edward MacDowell’s Second Piano Concerto with the New Hampshire Philharmonic Orchestra and with the Boston Civic Symphony at Jordan Hall. For her accomplishments, Eskin has received an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Keene State College, New Hampshire, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Lotus Club, New York....

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Richard Jackson

(b Paris, France, 1781; d New York, NY, Jan 17, 1859). American pianist, teacher, and conductor. He was a student of François-Adrien Boieldieu and Charles-Simon Catel and recipient of the first prize in both piano and accompaniment at the Paris Conservatoire in 1800 before immigrating to the United States in 1814 or 1815. He probably performed and taught in various American cities, and in September 1816 was in Boston, where he published a piece for piano, Battle of New Orleans, before settling in New York. He is mentioned from 1818 until 1835 in directories of New York, where he maintained a leading position in the musical community. In 1824 he was chosen to be the permanent conductor of the newly founded Philharmonic Society; he also played the piano in the orchestra of the first Italian opera season in New York (which began on 29 November 1825) and conducted Weber’s ...

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Steven Ledbetter

revised by E. Douglas Bomberger

(b Ilmenau, nr Hamburg, Germany, Dec 21, 1846; d Readfield, ME, July 20, 1925). Pianist and pedagogue of German birth. He studied in Weimar and later in Frankfurt am Main with Joachim Raff, and taught at the Hoch Conservatory in Frankfurt from 1877 to 1882. Upon the death of Raff he immigrated to the United States and taught at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore for three years. He appeared at the Worcester Festival in 1884 and moved the following year to Boston, where he became head of the piano department at the New England Conservatory. In 1890 he was named acting director of the conservatory, taking over the duties of the ailing founder, Eben Tourjée. Although he became director after Tourjée’s death, his divergence from many of Tourjée’s initial goals aroused dissension among the faculty; he resigned in 1896. His successor was George Whitefield Chadwick. After leaving the New England Conservatory Faelten organized a rival institution in Boston, the Faelten Pianoforte School, with his brother Reinhold Faelten (...

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Jean-Michel Nectoux

(Urbain)

(b Pamiers, Ariège, May 12, 1845; d Paris, Nov 4, 1924). French composer, teacher, pianist and organist. The most advanced composer of his generation in France, he developed a personal style that had considerable influence on many early 20th-century composers. His harmonic and melodic innovations also affected the teaching of harmony for later generations.

He was the youngest of six children (one a daughter), born to Toussaint-Honoré Fauré (1810–85) and Marie-Antoinette-Hélène Lalène-Laprade (1809–87), a member of the minor aristocracy. Gabriel was sent to a foster-nurse in the village of Verniolle for four years. In 1849 his father was appointed director of the Ecole Normale at Montgauzy, near Foix; Fauré later recalled that from his early childhood he spent hours playing the harmonium in the chapel adjoining the school. An old blind lady, who came to listen and give advice, told his father about his gift for music; a certain Bernard Delgay shares the honour of having been his first music teacher. During the summer of ...

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