- Geoffrey Burgess
(b Pittsburgh, PA, May 3, 1908; d Cincinnati, OH, Feb 13, 1994). American oboist. From the age of 19 he studied with the founder of the American school of oboe playing, Marcel Tabuteau, at the Curtis Institute, Philadelphia. Bloom was one of the most important of the first generation of American-born and -trained oboists. In 1930 he received his first appointment as assistant principal, and later solo, English horn with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Leopold Stokowski. After a short period as principal oboist in the Rochester Philharmonic, in 1937 Bloom was invited as a founding member of the NBC SO, where he played principal oboe under Toscanini. As a core member of the Bach Aria Group from its foundation by William Scheide in 1946 until 1980, Bloom played an important part in the revival of Baroque music in postwar America, and is remembered above all for his poised performances of Bach and tasteful ornamentation. Bloom was also eager to explore new oboe music; he played in an early US performance of Schoenberg’s Wind Quintet and inspired numerous compositions, including Quincy Porter’s Quintet for oboe and strings (...