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Article

Alizadeh, Hossein  

Laudan Nooshin

(b Tehran, 1951). Iranian tār and setār player, teacher and composer. He studied at the National Music Conservatory in Tehran from the age of 13 and then at the University of Tehran from 1970 to 1974; his teachers included Habibollah Salehi, Ali Akbar Shahnazi, Nur Ali Borumand, Abdollah Davami, Mahmud Karimi, Yusef Forutan, Said Hormozi, Dariush Safvate and Hooshang Zarif. From 1971 Alizadeh studied and taught at the influential Centre for the Preservation and Propagation of Iranian Music in Tehran; he later taught music theory and tār at the University of Tehran. In 1976 he began his association with Iranian National Radio and Television, working as a soloist, a composer and a conductor. He co-founded the Chavosh Cultural Artistic Centre in 1977 and the Aref Ensemble in 1983; he also worked with the Sheyda Ensemble. In the early 1980s he studied musicology and composition at the University of Berlin. In ...

Article

Cornejo, Rodolfo S(oldevilla)  

Lucrecia R. Kasilag

(b Manila, May 15, 1909; d Manila, August 11, 1991). Filipino composer, conductor and pianist. In 1930 he graduated from the Conservatory of the University of the Philippines with teacher’s diplomas in piano and in theory and composition; he then studied at the Chicago Musical College (BMus 1932, MMus 1933) and the Neotarian College of Philosophy, Kansas City (PhD 1947). He taught at the University of the Philippines Conservatory (1930–34) and was director and professor at the Manila (1934–9, 1949–52) and Cosmopolitan College (1948–9) conservatories. During World War II he appeared as a pianist and conductor in the USA, Canada, Europe and Hawaii. He was a state cultural adviser (1958–60) and founder-president of the National Federation of Music. He lectured in humanities at the University of the City of Manila (1968–75), and after 1978 worked mainly in the USA, appearing as a composer-conductor at the Seattle Opera House....

Article

Eksanishvili, Eleonora  

Olga Manulkina

(Grigor′yevna)

(b Tbilisi, Feb 11, 1919). Georgian composer, pianist and teacher. At the Tbilisi Conservatory she studied the piano with A. Tulashvili and composition with A. Ryazanov and Andria Balanchivadze, graduating in 1940 and 1945 respectively. In 1947 and 1950 she was a postgraduate student at the Moscow Conservatory, studying with Goldenweiser (piano) and Litinsky and Shebalin (composition). In 1944 she began her career as a pianist and teacher; she has taught in Tbilisi at the First Music College, the Paliashvili Central Music School and, from 1953, at the conservatory, where she was appointed professor in 1973. On Eksanishvili’s initiative, the first Georgian experimental school-studio was set up in 1973; the teachers there have used the method she expounded in her textbook Aisi (published 1972) of developing creative abilities using Georgian folksong. Eksanishvili’s piano music, comprising original compositions, transcriptions of works by Georgian composers and music for children, is the most significant part of her output. In ...

Article

Gabunia, Nodar  

Leah Dolidze

(b Tbilisi, July 9, 1933). Georgian composer, pianist and teacher. He studied at the Tbilisi Conservatory and then at the Moscow Conservatory with Goldenweiser for piano and Khachaturian for composition. In 1962 he returned to the Tbilisi Conservatory to teach the piano, and in 1984 he was appointed rector of that institution as well as president of the Georgian Composers’ Union. Recognition as both pianist and composer came to him early, at a time when he belonged to a group of Georgian composers moving towards Stravinsky, Prokofiev and, most of all, Bartók. Gabunia's Igav-araki (‘Fable’, 1964) is one of the most successful syntheses of these Eastern European compositional models with a clear Georgian musical identity. The piece is a kind of madrigal comedy in the modern form of a concert satire. Many aspects of it were new to Georgian music – polyrhythm and polymetre, the sharp dissonance of polytonal chords, the variation of short motifs, the freshness and richness of timbre – and yet these features were organically connected to the modal and polyphonic particularities of west Georgian folk music. Bartók was the guiding spirit, as throughout Gabunia’s creative life. Another continuity lies in his adherence to chamber and chamber-orchestral music, allowing a deepening and emotional intensification of style which is realized with particular fullness in his Second Quartet, one of his best known works. For the piano he writes as a virtuoso, using modernist devices – clusters, mechanical rhythms, new modes of playing – alongside lyrical episodes that suggest a feeling for nature and an elegiac-pensive mood. His later compositions are simpler and more diatonic....

Article

Izu, Mark  

Lars Helgert

(George)

(b Vallejo, CA, Sept 30, 1954). American composer and bass player. He studied bass as a youth with Charles Manning and then under Charles Siani at San Francisco State University, where he received a BA in music. He also studied Japanese gagaku music with Togi Suenobu and has become proficient on the shō, sheng, and other Asian instruments. Izu has performed with Cecil Tayor, Steve Lacy, and James Newton, and has been an important figure in Asian American jazz. He was a founding member of the groups United Front and Anthony Brown’s Asian American Orchestra, performing on the latter’s Grammy-nominated recording of Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn’s Far East Suite (1999, Asian Improv). He has also worked with Jon Jang’s Pan Asian Arkestra. Izu has served as artistic director of the Asian American Jazz Festival and on the faculty of Stanford University’s Institute for Diversity in the Arts....

Article

Lara, Kozma  

George Leotsakos

(b Durrës, June 10, 1930; d Tirana, Albania, Jan 18, 2019). Albanian composer, pianist, and teacher. After early piano lessons in Durrës, he studied at the Jordan Misja Art Lyceum, Tirana (1947–9), subsequently working as a pianist for the Ensemble of the People's Army (1950–53) and at the Opera (1953–5). He also taught the piano at the Durrës elementary music school. He then resumed his studies at the Moscow Conservatory (1959–61), and, after Albania's breach with the USSR, at the newly-founded Tirana Conservatory with Zadeja (1962–4). He was head of the music department at the Ministry of Education and Culture (1964–9), head of composition at the Tirana Conservatory (1969–74), and professor of harmony and analysis at the Durrës elementary music school (1974–8). In 1978 he returned to teach at the Tirana Conservatory. From ...

Article

Lee, Hope  

Meghann Wilhoite

(Anne Keng-Wai)

(b Taipei, Taiwan, Jan 14, 1953). Canadian composer, pianist, and educator of Chinese origin. She immigrated to Canada from Taiwan in 1967, studying at the Royal Conservatory of Music and the University of Toronto (BSc 1973; BMus 1978) from 1970 to 1978, and receiving her Master’s of Music from McGill University in 1981, where she studied with Brian Cherney, Bengt Hambraeus, Jon Rea, Mariano Etkin, and Alcides Lanza. During the years 1981–3 she studied with Klaus Huber at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik in Freiburg, Germany. Two of her early works (Dindle; Ballad of Endless Woe) won first prize in the Performing Rights Organization of Canada (PROCAN) Young Composer’s contest in 1979. She has also won the Music Today award (1985, Melboac), and the Scotia Music Festival competition (1991, Nabripamo) among others. She has been commissioned by artists such as Ensemble Resonance, Duo Solista, and Han Mei. In ...

Article

Lusikian, Stepan  

Svetlana Sarkisyan

(b Yerevan, January 31, 1956; d Glendale, Feb 24, 2001). Armenian composer and pianist. He attended the Komitas Conservatory in Yerevan where he studied composition with Sar‘ian, with whom he undertook postgraduate work (1975–83), and in 1981 completed studies in the piano faculty with G. Saradzhev. He taught harmony and composition at the Yerevan Conservatory from 1984, later becoming a senior lecturer. From 1992 to 1997 he was deputy Minister of Culture and Sport. He won various awards in Armenia and the former Soviet Union. His style was based on both Near Eastern and Armenian traditions. His piano compositions, which are similar to early 20th-century works of the region (especially those of Komitas and Tigranian), and his vocal cycles are notable for their transparent texture and linear writing which is both ascetic and fluid. The principle of variation of short motifs and an improvisational manner of development are characteristic of Lusikian; this trait begins with the Cello Sonata (...

Article

Mirzayev, Shavkat  

Razia Sultanova

(b Tashkent, Feb 10, 1942). Uzbek rubāb player, teacher and composer. He came from a family of musicians and began to study the rubāb at the age of six with his father, the composer and instrumental performer Muhammadjan Mirzayev. At the age of 14 Shavkat was invited to work with the Uzbek Philharmonic Society, and in 1960 he began to compose songs in the traditional Uzbek classical style. Between 1958 and 1972 he took part in tours of several countries including Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Russia, and from 1960 to 1970 he worked for the Uzbek State Philharmonia. He studied Uzbek classical music with Fakhriddin Sadyqov at the Tashkent State Conservatory from 1972 to 1977, at the same time teaching singing and the Uzbek rubāb; he continued to teach at the Conservatory until 1982. From 1980 to 1982 he directed the makom ensemble at Uzbek State Radio, and in ...

Article

Oganezashvili, Sasha  

Alina Pahlevanian

[Oganyan, Aleksandr]

(b Soganlug, Georgia, 1889; d Tbilisi, May 31, 1932). Armenian k‘emanch‘a player, teacher, theorist and composer. He began to play the k‘emanch‘a at the age of seven and joined a sazander ensemble in which he played the tiplipito and the duduk as well as the k‘emanch‘a. He became a soloist in the composer Anton Mailian's Eastern Orchestra in Baku in 1905 and often appeared with the instrumental ashugh group Haziri in Tbilisi. In the same year he toured the Transcaucasian region, Central Asia and Iran with two mugam performers, the singer D. Karyagdogli and the t‘a player K. Pirimov. During the period 1906–12 recordings of his performances of classical mugam and Armenian dance music were released by the companies Kontzert-Rekord, Patye and Sport-Rekord. He studied the k‘emanch‘a with Oganez Oganezov, an authority on the Persian mugam, and took the pseudonym Oganezashvili (‘son of Oganez’) in his honour; Oganezashvili added a fourth string to the ...

Article

Partos, Oedoen  

William Y. Elias

[Ödön]

(b Budapest, Oct 1, 1907; d Tel-Aviv, July 6, 1977). Israeli composer, string player and teacher of Hungarian origin. Born to an assimilated Jewish upper middle class family, he was a child prodigy and studied the violin with Ormandy. Hubay heard him play the violin at the age of eight and took him as a pupil at the Budapest Academy of Music, where he also studied composition with Kodály. After graduating from the academy in 1924, he was leader of the Lucerne Stadtsorchester (1924–6) and the Budapest Konzertorchester (1926–7). In 1927 he moved to Germany, working as a soloist, and in 1933 he became first violinist of the Jewish Cultural Centre. At the end of that year he returned to Hungary, moving then to Baku to teach the violin and composition at the conservatory (1935) and returning to Budapest as leader of the Konzertorchester (...

Article

Saba, Abol Hassan  

Hormoz Farhat

(b Tehran, 1902; d Tehran, 1957). Iranian violinist, composer and teacher. He was a competent performer on many instruments including the setār, the santur, the kamāncheh and the tombak, but in later life was identified above all as the foremost violinist of his time. He began his musical training when only six years old. His earliest teacher was Mirza Abdollah, who is credited with the definitive organization of the dastgāhs of Persian classical music.

In 1924 Saba enrolled in Ali Naqi Vaziri’s newly established music school, where he learnt about the theory of Western music and was attracted to Vaziri’s ideas for a reform of Persian music on European lines. In 1927 Vaziri founded a branch of his music school in Rasht in the Gilan Province and installed Saba as its principal. During his three years in Gilān, Saba collected folksongs from that region which he submitted to Western notation; he was the first Iranian to do research on the folk music of his country....

Article

Shaheen, Simon  

Reem Kelani

revised by Alyson E. Jones

(b Tarshiha, Galilee, Israel, 1955). Palestinian ‘ūd player, violinist, composer, and teacher, active in the United States. He began learning ‘ūd at the age of five with his father, the renowned musician Hikmat Shaheen. At the age of seven he entered the Rubin Conservatory in Haifa to study violin and Western classical music. He graduated from the Jerusalem Rubin Academy of Music and Dance in 1978 and remained there for two years as an instructor in the performance and theory of Arab music.

In 1980 Shaheen moved to New York, where he studied at the Manhattan School and later at Columbia University. He performed as a soloist and as a member of the Near Eastern Music Ensemble, which he founded in 1982. During that time he also began presenting workshops and lecture-demonstrations about Arab music in schools and universities. Since 1994 he has produced the Annual Arab Festival of Arts in New York, and since ...

Article

Shahnazi, Ali Akbar  

Hormoz Farhat

(b Tehran, 1897; d Tehran, 1985). Iranian tār player, composer and teacher. He came from a family of celebrated musicians. His father was Aqa Hossein Qoli and his uncle Mirza Abdollah, both highly respected tār and setār players. He studied the tār with his father from the age of eight and, on his father’s death in 1915, he continued further training with his uncle. He was 14 when he made his first recording, accompanying the singer Jenab-e Damavandi. Other recordings, both as a solo tār player and as an accompanist to singers, followed. By the early 1920s he was widely recognized as the country’s foremost tār virtuoso.

In his maturity, Shahnazi developed a highly colourful and dramatic style of tār playing. He favoured strongly delineated dynamics; his plectrum strokes were clear, rapid and diversified. Many of his broadcast performances are preserved in the archives of Tehran Radio; the Iranian Ministry of Culture also holds a recorded collection of his rendition of all the ...

Article

Sitsky, Larry  

Robyn Holmes, Peter Campbell, and Judith Crispin

[Lazarus]

Robyn Holmes and Peter Campbell, revised by Judith Crispin

(b Tianjin, China, Sept 10, 1934). Australian composer, pianist, and musicologist. Born to Russian-Chinese parents, he emigrated to Australia with his family in 1951. He studied the piano at the NSW Conservatorium of Music, Sydney, where his teachers included Winifred Burston (1952–8), and in San Francisco with Egon Petri (1959–61). On his return to Australia, he taught at the Queensland Conservatorium (1961–5) and lectured on contemporary composition at the University of Queensland. In 1965 he assumed the position of Head of Keyboard at the newly founded Canberra School of Music (now part of the Australian National University), where he became Head of Composition and Head of Academic Studies in 1978, and Professor Emeritus and Distinguished Visiting Fellow in 2005.

Sitsky first came to prominence as a composer at the inaugural Australian Composers’ Seminar (Hobart, Tasmania, ...