Bergh, Gertrude van den
- Helen Metzelaar
(bap. Cologne, Jan 21, 1793; d The Hague, Sept 10, 1840). Dutch pianist and composer. A child prodigy, she studied the piano with Ferdinand Ries and composition with J.A.F. Burgmüller. Her sonata for piano was published by J.J. Hummel when she was nine years old. By 1813 she had moved to The Hague, where she was especially renowned for her interpretation of Beethoven, and was also one of the earliest ‘revivalists’ of J.S. Bach’s music. She was the first Dutch woman to publish a manual on the fundamentals of music theory, Principes de musique (c1830). Besides conducting several choirs, she supported herself by teaching members of the Dutch royal family. Her sweetly romantic Lied für Pianoforte was probably the earliest ‘Song without Words’ to be written in the Netherlands. She also composed virtuoso works, such as the Rondeau pour le pianoforte op.3 (c1820–21...