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Article

Marta Cureses

(b Palma de Mallorca, Aug 24, 1931; d Madrid, October 29, 2006). Spanish composer. He began his musical studies at the Barcelona Conservatory with Gabriel Gálvez, Luis Millet, Juan Pich Santasusana, Joan Gibert Camins, Joaquín Zamocois and Eduardo Toldrá, and later removed to Geneva to broaden his training. His tireless professional work extended beyond composition to directing various musical and ballet groups, orchestration, performing as a pianist, music criticism on radio and television, and teaching. He taught composition and fugue at the Seville Conservatory until 1971, then composition at the Madrid Conservatory until his retirement in 1997.

Alís’s works number about 200 and comprise a wide variety of genres. Many of them were commissioned by various official organizations. Among them are the orchestral Sinfonietta, Música para un festival en Sevilla, Homenatge a Antoni Gaudí, Seis remembranzas a Eduardo Toldrá and Rêverie, all of which bear witness to his mastery of orchestration, tone-colour and intensity. Equally well known are his pieces for piano, his choral pieces and his string quartets. In addition to his serious music, he composed, orchestrated and conducted commercial and incidental music for publishing houses, CDs, theatre, radio, television and the cinema. A member of various juries of international competitions, he was made Commander of the Imperial Hispanic Order of Carlos V and received numerous honours and prizes....

Article

Robert Stevenson

(b c1548; d Granada, June 28, 1591). Spanish composer, son of Santos de Aliseda. From about 1557 to September 1577 when he was ordained, he was a member of the choir of Granada Cathedral. On 8 June, 1580 the chapter accepted him as successor to his father without the customary public competition. As maestro de capilla he was required to give board and instruction to the choirboys, to provide daily lessons in polyphony and to compose chanzonetas and extremeses for important feasts. In 1589 he was relieved of these obligations because of ill-health. He died in poverty, like his father. None of Aliseda’s secular music survives. His solemnly expressive motets owe much to those of Morales in structure and style, particularly to the latter’s Emendemus in melius.

all in E-GRc or GRcr unless otherwise stated

Article

Robert Stevenson

(d Granada, July 4, 1580). Spanish composer. He was appointed maestro de capilla of Granada Cathedral on 19 November 1557 despite the opposition of his predecessor, Luis de Cózar, who intended his own nephew to succeed him. After an unsuccessful appeal to the archbishop, Cózar was forced to hand over the charge of the choirboys to Aliseda in May 1558. Aliseda had already begun to search for better singers, but was hindered by the poor salaries which the Granada Cathedral chapter offered.

Throughout his 23 years as maestro de capilla Aliseda won praise from the chapter for his diligent teaching, his punctuality and particularly for his care of the choirboys. In 1579, in appreciation of his merits, the chapter recommended him to Philip II for a prebend, and on 14 May 1580 voted him a gift of 12 ducats to aid him in his illness.

Aliseda's six-part motet ...

Article

(b Paris, Nov 30, 1813; d Paris, March 29, 1888). French pianist and composer. His real name was Morhange. He was one of the leading piano virtuosos of the 19th century and one of its most unusual composers, remarkable in both technique and imagination, yet largely ignored by his own and succeeding generations.

Of Jewish parentage, Alkan was the eldest of five brothers, all of whom, with an elder sister as well, became musicians under the assumed name Alkan; Napoléon Alkan, the third brother (1826–1910), taught solfège at the Paris Conservatoire for over 50 years. Valentin Alkan’s career at the Conservatoire started brilliantly with a premier prix for solfège at the age of seven. When Alkan was nine Cherubini observed that he was ‘astonishing for his age’ and described his ability on the piano as ‘extraordinary’. He won a premier prix for piano in 1824, for harmony in ...

Article

Ebenezer Prout

revised by David Fallows

[all'8va] (It.: ‘at the octave’).

An instruction to play an octave above the written pitch if the sign is placed above the notes (sometimes specified as ottava alta, or sopra); if an octave lower is intended, this is indicated by placing the sign below the notes or by specifying with ottava bassa or sotta...

Article

Ebenezer Prout

revised by Robert Donington

(It.: ‘at the unison’).

An instruction that any parts thus shown are to be taken as one part, either at the same pitch or (where the range of the voice or instrument implies it) at the octave (or double octave) above or below. It is frequently abbreviated to ‘unis.’. In orchestral scores the term is used to show that two or more instruments whose parts are written on the same staff are to play in unison; in the later 19th century the words ...

Article

Peter Wright

(It.).

In the system of Proportional notation of the late Middle Ages and Renaissance, another name for proportio dupla (time signature 2/1 or more commonly 𝇍), where note shapes diminish in relative value in the ratio 2:1. The tactus thus shifts from its normal place on the semibreve (alla semibreve...

Article

[Lione, Leo, Leon]

(b Chios, 1588; d Rome, Jan 19, 1669). Italian theologian and scholar of Greek origin. He went to Italy as a child and studied philosophy, theology, and classics in Rome at the Greek Catholic Collegio di S Atanasio from 1599 to 1610. After a period in Chios he studied medicine in Rome until 1616. Thereafter he was employed in the Vatican Library and was responsible for moving the Biblioteca Palatina from Heidelberg to Rome in 1622–3. In 1661 he succeeded Luca Holstenio as chief curator of the Vatican Library. He wrote extensively on a wide range of subjects including theology, Byzantine studies, classical antiquity, and Italian letters. He was a member of the Accademia degli Incogniti, which played an important role in early Venetian opera. He is significant for the history of music by virtue of his Drammaturgia … divisa in sette indici (Rome, 1666), a compendious and surprisingly accurate list of dramatic works of all kinds, including opera librettos, published in Italy; it also lists many unpublished works. A second, vastly enlarged and updated edition by Giovanni Cendoni, Apostolo Zeno, Giovanni degli Apostoli, and others unnamed (Venice, ...

Article

William Waterhouse

(b Sin-le-Noble, Nord, May 25, 1923). French bassoonist and teacher. A precocious talent, he won a premier prix at the Paris Conservatoire at the age of 17. He won a first prize at the Geneva International Competition in 1949 and was appointed to the Paris Opéra the same year. In ...

Article

David Fallows

(It.: ‘broadening’, ‘spreading’; gerund of allargare, ‘to spread’)

An instruction to slow down the tempo and often to develop a fuller and more majestic performing style. But this is not always intended. Verdi, for example, almost invariably accompanied allargando with a decrease in texture or volume; thus the very end of the prelude to La traviata has the successive markings ...

Article

Miriam Miller

(d 1634). English music printer. He printed a few musical works between 1610 and 1615, only his initials ‘E.A.’ appearing on certain imprints. He printed Thomas Ravenscroft’s A Briefe Discourse (1614) and John Amner’s Sacred Hymnes of 3, 4, 5 and 6 parts for Voyces and Vyols (1615). His address was ‘neere Christ-Church’ in London. His name appears among a list of printers granted printing monopolies by James I and his successors as ‘Edw. Alday, to print sett songs et al’, but he apparently made little use of any such privilege.

Humphries-SmithMP E. Arber, ed.: A Transcript of the Registers of the Company of Stationers of London, 1554–1640, 1–4 (London, 1875–7/R); v (Birmingham, 1894/R) R.B. McKerrow: ‘Edward Allde as a Typical Trade Printer’, The Library, 4th ser., 10 (1929–30), 121–62 J. Morehen: ‘A Neglected East Anglian Madrigalian Collection of the Elizabethan Period’, ...

Article

Roland Würtz and Paul Corneilson

(b Venice, 1754; d Ireland, after 1801). Italian soprano. She made her début in 1770 in Venice and in 1771 went from Florence to Mannheim, possibly on a recommendation by Casanova to the Mannheim court poet, Mattia Verazi. Holzbauer gave her singing lessons and employed her as second soubrette in the court opera (1771–5). She made her Mannheim début in 1771 in Piccinni's Gli stravaganti (Nerina) and appeared the following year at the palace theatre in Schwetzingen in Gassmann's L’amore artigiano (Angiolina) and Sacchini’s La contadina in corte (Tancia); Burney gave a glowing report of her. After 1778 she sang in Venice and Florence, in 1781 in London, making her début there in Anfossi’s I viaggiatori felici. On 20 July 1783 she was engaged by Bertholdi at a salary of 1000 ducats as prima donna buffa at the Dresden court opera, where Mozart heard her and placed her above Ferrarese (letter of ...

Article

David Fallows

(It., diminutive of allegro)

A tempo (and mood) designation, normally indicating something a little less fast, and perhaps a little more lighthearted, than Allegro. But there is some evidence that in Paris around 1800 it was understood to be faster than allegro, most specifically in J.B. Cartier's L'art du violon (Paris, 1798) and in Renaudin's Plexichronomètre readings (see B. Brook La symphonie française, Paris, 1962, i, 318). It is found occasionally in Vivaldi and Domenico Scarlatti, but hardly at all in their precursors, even though Brossard mentioned the word in his Dictionaire of 1703. During the second half of the 18th century it came into special popularity, for the idea of a fastish tempo that should on no account show any sign of hurry was peculiarly appropriate to the galant style. Leopold Mozart (1756) said it should be performed ‘prettily, frivolously and jokily’ (‘artig, tändelend und scherzhaft’). When included in graduated lists of tempo marks it was normally placed between ...

Article

Colin Timms

(b Rome, c1585; d Rome, Sept 5, 1629). Italian composer. He was brought up in Rome. He was a private pupil of G.B. Nanino from April 1594 and a choirboy at S Luigi dei Francesi from October 1595; by February 1596 he was learning to compose. He left S Luigi in January 1602, after his voice had broken, but returned as an alto in December and remained until May 1603. He is next heard of at the collegiate church of S Maria Maggiore at Spello, where he was maestro di cappella from at least June 1608 (possibly from 1606) to January 1609. He then moved back to Rome and was maestro di cappella of S Maria in Trastevere from September 1609 to March 1610 and of S Maria Maggiore from then to his death. He married in 1616 and had five children. Allegri was one of the first to write independent instrumental accompaniments in vocal chamber music: his ...

Article

Jerome Roche

revised by Noel O’Regan

(b Rome, 1582; d Rome, Feb 7, 1652). Italian composer and singer, brother of Domenico Allegri. From 1591 to 1596 he was a boy chorister and from 1601 to 1604 a tenor at S Luigi dei Francesi, Rome, where the maestro di cappella was G.B. Nanino. According to Allegri’s obituary he studied with G.M. Nanino (see Lionnet). He was active as a singer and composer at the cathedrals of Fermo (1607–21) and Tivoli, and by August 1628 he was maestro di cappella of Santo Spirito in Sassia, Rome. He joined the papal choir as an alto on 6 December 1629, under Urban VIII, and was elected its maestro di cappella for the jubilee year of 1650. In 1640 his fellow singers elected him to revise Palestrina’s hymns (necessitated by Urban VIII’s revision of the texts), which were published in Antwerp in 1644. His contemporaries clearly saw him as a worthy successor to Palestrina and a guardian of the ...

Article

Edmond Strainchamps

(b Florence, Nov 16, 1567; d Florence, July 15, 1648). Italian composer and lutenist. Cesare Tinghi, the Medici court diarist, called him (in Solerti) ‘Lorenzo [or Lorenzino] todesco del liuto’, which has encouraged the notion that he may have been German, but his baptismal record confirms that he was from Florence. He entered the ranks of salaried musicians at the Medici court on 15 April 1604 as a lutenist; during the period 1636–7 he was referred to as maestro di liuto. In January 1622 he was appointed guardaroba della musica, and in due course he was also placed in charge of the pages who played, sang and danced in court entertainments. He continued to serve the court until his death. He seems chiefly to have written instrumental music. Only two vocal pieces by him are known: Tu piangi, a madrigal for solo voice and continuo published in Antonio Brunelli's ...

Article

Hugh Davies

An Electronic organ designed by Jerome Markowitz (1917–91) between 1937 and 1939, and manufactured from 1939 in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and from 1953 in nearby Macungie. The Allen Organ Co. was founded in 1945; besides many models of the organ, it has manufactured two electronic harpsichords (introduced in 1961 and 1982) and an electronic piano (from 1965). After Markowitz's death his son Steve Markowitz succeeded him as president.

The Allen organ was the first fully-electronic organ to become commercially available. A three-manual instrument was produced in 1946, and a four-manual one in 1954. In 1949 a two-speed rotating loudspeaker unit, the Gyrophonic Projector, was introduced. The company was one of the first to develop a fully transistorized organ (1959), and in the digital Computer Organ (1971) it pioneered the replacement of oscillators by a computer that generates sounds by means of digital waveform synthesis (based on recordings of pipe organ spectra). The original organ was designed for use in churches, but later models included concert and home organs. The concert models have frequently taken solo and obbligato roles in orchestras, under conductors such as Barenboim, Bernstein, Dorati, Karajan, Mehta, Ormandy and Stokowski. Four-manual touring organs were commissioned in the mid-1970s by Carlo Curley (380 loudspeakers) and Virgil Fox (over 500 loudspeakers)....

Article

German musical organization. Established in 1861 in Weimar and dedicated to the promotion of new music (primarily through performance), the Allgemeiner Deutscher Musikverein (ADMV) was the first national music society in Germany. Focal points of its activity were the annual festivals that took place in alternating German and German-speaking cities and initially featured the music of Liszt and his colleagues in the ‘New German’ movement. During its first decade the ADMV gave premières of music by such composers as Wagner, Liszt, Cornelius and Felix Draeseke. Liszt provided the society with artistic leadership but, as president, Franz Brendel was the chief guiding spirit during its early years. Upon Brendel’s death in 1868 the noted Leipzig choral conductor Carl Riedel took over the presidency. During Riedel’s leadership the society entered into a period of identity crisis that was exacerbated by the deaths of Wagner and Liszt: it gradually broadened its mandate to encompass the promotion of music by non-Germans (Saint-Säens, Dvořák, Tchaikovsky) and by the former conservative opposition (Brahms). These developments intensified under the leadership of Riedel’s successors, Hans von Bronsart von Schellendorf (...

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Article

Ronald D. Cohen

Singing group and political activists. In late 1940 Pete Seeger met Lee Hays, a preacher and labor organizer from Arkansas, and his New York roommate, Millard Lampell, a writer from New Jersey. By February 1941 they had launched the Almanac Singers, a loose collection of musicians devoted to performing original and traditional folksongs, many with a hard political edge. Soon joined by Bess Lomax (sister of Alan), Baldwin (“Butch”) and Peter Hawes, Josh White, Woody Guthrie, Agnes (“Sis”) Cunningham, and others, they performed before various labor and left-wing groups. Their first album of peace songs, Songs for John Doe, appeared in early 1941. This was followed by two albums of traditional songs, Sod Buster Ballads and Deep Sea Chanties, and the pro-labor Talking Union. Their final album, Dear Mr. President, which consisted of pro-war songs, was released in 1942. Their left-wing politics led to much negative publicity, and with the start of World War II the group began to fragment. Seeger joined the Army, Guthrie entered the Merchant Marine, and the others went in various directions, but their creative songs and folk style would live on....