- Spencer A. Huston
(b Hamburg, Germany, 1799; d New York, June 8, 1839). German pianist and composer, active in the USA. Schlesinger studied with Ferdinand Ries (a student of Beethoven) and Ignaz Moscheles. He arrived in New York and gave his first performance in 1836. Schlesinger became leader of the “Concordia,” a society devoted to German instrumental and choral music. Colleagues admired his skills as a pianist and his ability to improvise. Schlesinger frequently performed piano duos, assisted by his friend and fellow pianist William Scharfenberg. His last performance probably took place in May 1839, when he performed Weber’s Invitation to the Dance at a private concert given by the Concordia. On 25 June 1839 many of New York’s most important musicians participated in a memorial concert at the Broadway Tabernacle. The “Grand Musical Solemnity” was a tribute to Schlesinger and was designed to raise funds for his widow and two children. The Solemnity led to the founding of the New York Philharmonic Society. In ...