- Charles P. Schmidt
(b Moscow, Russia, Dec 4, 1883; d New York, NY, May 4, 1953). Clarinetist, pedagogue, arranger, and author of Russian birth. Beginning at age nine, he received clarinet instruction from his father and performed in amateur and military bands. He studied with Joseph Friedrich at the Imperial Conservatory of Moscow (1894–1901), where he completed a BA degree with honors (1903). He was principal clarinetist in the Moscow Opera and Symphony Orchestra (1903–15) and the St. Petersburg Imperial Opera (1915), and served in the Russian Army during World War I. He organized and played in several touring ensembles, including the Moscow Quintet (1902) and Zimro (1918). While touring the United States with the Zimro ensemble (1919), he was offered the position of principal clarinetist in the New York Philharmonic, which he held from 1920–48. He founded the first clarinet choir (...