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Victoria Eli Rodríguez

(b Havana, Dec 21, 1938). Cuban composer and educator. He studied piano and singing at the Municipal Conservatory in Havana and education at Havana University. From 1961 he worked at the Cuban Institute for Cinematic Art and Industry (ICAIC); his music written that year for the documentary Revolución en el mar launched his composing career. Other early works include the ballets Estudio rítmico (1962) and Ensayo (1963). From 1965 to 1967 he took postgraduate studies in composition at the State Higher School of Music in Warsaw with Rudzinski and Dobrowolski. From 1968 he taught at various music schools in Havana, and in 1976 became professor of composition at the Instituto Superior de Arte, where he also acted as vice-dean and then dean of the music faculty. From 1989 to 1992 he was president of the Asociación de Músicos de la Unión de Escritores y Artistas de Cuba....


[Walleshauser, Johann Evangelist]

(b Unterhattenhofen [now Hattenhofen], Upper Bavaria, April 28, 1735; d Munich, Jan 10, 1816). German tenor and singing teacher. A pupil of Camerloher, he held posts as a court singer in Munich and was a member of the Munich Hofkapelle, 1770–94. He also sang in Amsterdam and Brussels (1755), in Italy (after 1757, when he assumed the name Valesi, and 1770–75) and in Prague, Dresden and Berlin (1777–8). He sang in the first performance of Mozart’s La finta giardiniera (1775) in Munich, where he also created the part of the High Priest of Neptune in the first performance of Idomeneo (1781). He trained over 200 singers, among them his children Anna (1776–92), Joseph (1778–1807), Magdalena (b 1781), Crescentia (b 1785) and Thekla (1789–1868), Valentin Adamberger and Carl Maria von Weber....


Eva Helenius

(b Vallerstad, Östergötland, Dec 25, 1646; d Uppsala, March 8, 1716). Swedish mathematician, composer, organist and writer on music. After attending the secondary school at Linköping he went to the University of Uppsala, where he matriculated in 1666. His many-sided talents and humility soon attracted the attention of Olof Rudbeck, whose foremost pupil he became. In 1675 he was appointed director of music and in 1676 organist of the university; he held both posts until 1691. He graduated MA in 1679 and was appointed lecturer in mathematics in 1680 and professor in 1690. He retired in 1711. Vallerius also periodically lectured on music, and musical events took place regularly at his house. Through his manuscript theoretical works Disputatio physico-musica de sono (1674), Disputatio physico-musica de modis (1686) and Disputatio de tactu musico (1698) he inaugurated a tradition of writing music dissertations that continued through the first half of the following century....


Patti M. Tolbert

(b Buckland, OH, April 4, 1908; d Tucson, AZ, Jan 29, 1995). American music educator. He studied piano as a child and took up the violin at age 13. He received degrees from Oberlin College (BSM 1930) and New York University (MA 1935, EdD 1940). He taught at Illinois College (1930–32) and MacMurray College (1930–32), both in Jacksonville, Illinois, and was supervisor of music for the Port Washington, New York public schools (1932–40). He served as a lieutenant in the US Navy Reserves in the Pacific Theater during World War II (1944–6) while on leave from teaching at the University of Missouri (1940–49). He then taught at New York University (1949–79), where he was chairman of the Department of Music Education (1955–79). He was also a member of the American Bandmasters Association (...


William B. Davis

(b Amsterdam, Netherlands, 3 July 1887; d Garden City, NY, 24 Aug 1953). American harpist, music educator, and music therapist of Dutch birth. He received early training in music as a harpist at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, with additional musical studies in Germany. After arriving in the United States in 1910 he performed as a harpist with the Metropolitan Opera (1910–6), the New York SO (1916–7), and the US Marine Band (1917–9). From 1921 to 1936 he served as director of a committee to study the feasibility of using music in institutions under the sponsorship of the Russell Sage Foundation. During this period he became an important advocate for music therapy through lecturing and authorship of numerous articles about the therapeutic benefits of music. Van de Wall then described music education and therapy techniques for institutionalized adults and children in his landmark book entitled ...


Howard Schott

( Jean Eugène )

( b Ixelles, nr Brussels, Nov 17, 1874; d Brussels, Jan 14, 1966). Belgian musicologist . He first studied law, becoming a doctor juris of the University of Brussels in 1897. After practising as a barrister in the court of appeals there until 1905 he abandoned his legal career to pursue musical studies, attending Maurice Kufferath's lectures on music history, and working on harmony, counterpoint and fugue with Ernest Closson. From 1909 to 1914 he served as music critic of L'indépendance belge; he also contributed criticism to other journals and lectured at the Brussels Institut des Hautes Etudes Musicales et Dramatiques on the origins of polyphony and the history of music in the Low Countries, and at the Free University on the history of keyboard music. In 1919 he succeeded Wotquenne as librarian of the Brussels Conservatory and remained in that post until his retirement in 1940. During his tenure the library continued to make important accessions, such as the Fonds Ste Gudule (several hundred 18th-century manuscripts from one of the principal churches in Brussels). He held the chair of the history of music at the Free University (...


Robert Wangermée

revised by Lewis Reece Baratz

(b Brussels, Aug 13, 1747; d Brussels, Dec 28, 1830). Flemish composer and teacher. Son of Charles Joseph Van Helmont, he was taught music by his father and other musicians of the collegiate church of St Michel et Ste Gudule, though unlike his brother Pierre Joseph he did not serve there as a choirboy. He sang at the royal chapel and in 1777 succeeded his father as choirmaster of Ste Gudule. He lost his directorship in 1794 during the occupation of the Netherlands by the French Revolutionary armies, but resumed his duties at Ste Gudule from 1802 to 1818. In 1813 he helped to establish a free singing school, thus marking the secularization of music education in Brussels, of which he was a strong advocate. This school eventually evolved into the Brussels Conservatory.

Van Helmont's known religious works (all autograph manuscripts) include a Requiem (1791) and two motets (...


Thomas F. Heck

revised by Jörg Jewanski

(b St. Paul, MN, Nov 13, 1941). American guitarist and teacher. He received early instruction in guitar from Albert Bellson, and after graduating from Macalester College, St. Paul (MFA 1963), he attended guitar classes with andrés Segovia (1964) and Julian Bream (1969). He made his international debut at Wigmore Hall, London (1972), and his US debut at Carnegie Hall (1979). The mood, lyricism, and refined tonal colors of his playing have been especially praised. One of the early American classical guitarists to be so engaged with contemporary music, Van has commissioned and given premieres of more than 50 works for the guitar, including Dominick Argento’s Letters from Composers (voice and guitar, 1968) and Paul Fetler’s Dialogue (flute and guitar, 1974) and Three Impressions for Guitar and Orchestra (1978). He also had edited guitar music and composes, mainly for guitar. From ...


[Jan Ignatius] [Vaňhal, Jan Křtitel]

(b Nechanicz [now Nechanice], nr Hradec Králové, Bohemia, May 12, 1739; d Vienna, Aug 20, 1813). Bohemian composer, violinist and teacher, active in Austria. His present reputation is derived mostly from his symphonies, his many published keyboard pieces and the comments of writers. He himself spelt his name Johann Baptist Waṅhal; his Viennese contemporaries and most scholars until World War II used the spelling Wanhal, but later in the 20th century a modern Czech form, Jan Křtitel Vaňhal, was erroneously introduced. Only one writer, Bohumír Dlabač, had extensive contact with him, acquired in 1795 in Vienna. An anonymous Viennese necrology, based mostly on local gossip, is complementary, but differs somewhat from Dlabač’s account. Additional observations based on fleeting contact in Vienna were mostly derived from one or other of these writers or from Charles Burney, who visited Vanhal on 12 September 1772.

Although there is indirect evidence that his father’s ancestors may have originated in the Netherlands, both of Vanhal’s parents’ families (Vaňhal and Volešovský) had lived in Bohemia for several generations. He was bonded to Count Schaffgotsch, in whose estates his family lived. During his early years in Nechanicz he was trained to sing and to play string and wind instruments; he also went to the nearby town of Marscherdorf to learn German and other subjects. His favourite teacher, Anton Erban, taught him to play the organ, and at the age of 13 he became organist in Opocžna (Opocžno). He later became choir director in Niemcžowes (Nemyčeves) in the province of Jicin, where Mathias Nowák trained him to be a virtuoso violinist and to write concertos....


Siegfried Gmeinwieser

(b Lucca, c1718; d Lucca, Aug 7, 1775). Italian composer and cello teacher. He probably spent his entire life in Lucca, where in 1743 he became maestro di cappella at the court of the archbishop. He also taught singing and the cello at the seminary in Lucca; Boccherini was one of his pupils. On his death he left his extensive music library, including his liturgical music, to the seminary.


Armineh Grigorian

revised by Robert Atayan and Aram Kerovpyan

[Gomidas Vartabed; Soghomonian, Soghomon]

(b Kütahya, Turkey, Oct 8, 1869; d Paris, Oct 22, 1935). Armenian composer, ethnomusicologist, choral conductor, singer and teacher. One of the first Armenians to have a classical Western musical education, as well as instruction in the music of his own people, he laid the foundations for a distinctive national style in his many songs and choruses, all of which are deeply influenced by the folk and church traditions of Armenia. His work on Armenian folksong is also of musicological importance.

Robert Atayan, revised by Aram Kerovpyan

Both of his parents (his father Gevorg Soghomonian was a cobbler) had gifts for music and poetry; in 1881, however, the boy was orphaned and sent to Armenia to study at the Gevork’ian Theological Seminary in Vagharshapat (now Edjmiadzine), and was ordained as a celibate priest in 1894, being given the name Komitas (a 7th-century Catholicos who was also a hymn composer). There his beautiful voice and his musical talents attracted notice, and under Sahak Amatuni’s guidance he mastered the theory and practice of Armenian liturgical singing. He also made decisive contact with folksong, to the collection and study of which he gave himself wholeheartedly. When he had only just learnt Armenian modern notation he set about recording the songs of the Ararat valley peasants and immigrant Armenians of other regions. Although he had no knowledge of European music theory, he harmonized these songs for performance with a student choir at the academy. His earliest surviving collection of folk melodies dates from ...


Tully Potter

(b Győr, July 4, 1921; d Grimisaut, Switzerland, Sept 4, 2003). British violinist, conductor and pedagogue of Hungarian birth. His father was his first teacher and his mother was his accompanist. At nine he had lessons from Carl Flesch and at ten made his début with Mendelssohn's E minor Concerto and was taken by Jenö Hubay into the Liszt Academy in Budapest, where he studied the violin with Ferenc Gabriel, composition with Kodály and chamber music with Leo Weiner. At 14 he began touring Europe. In 1937 he played Hubay's Third Concerto, with Ernő Dohnányi conducting, at Hubay's memorial concert. Having graduated in 1938, in 1939–43 he studied philosophy at Budapest University. During the war he also learnt conducting with Franco Ferrara. In 1947 he settled in England, taking British citizenship, but from 1956 he was based at Sion, Switzerland. Although Varga did not actually study with Hubay, in his prime he exhibited all the positive qualities of that school, never employing his considerable virtuosity for mere display. His repertory as a violinist covered the major Baroque, Classical and Romantic literature but he gained particular fame for his performances of the music of Bartók (whom he knew) and composers of the Second Viennese School. In ...


Lujza Tari

(b Budapest, Feb 1, 1914; d Budapest, October 11, 2007). Hungarian ethnomusicologist. He studied folk music under Kodály (1932–3, 1935–6), church music at the Budapest Academy of Music (1936–7), and philology at the University of Budapest, where he took the doctorate in 1941 with a dissertation on Hungarian folk music from the village of Áj. After working in the Budapest University library (1941–52), as head of the music department of the Ethnographic Museum (1952–67) and as lecturer at the ethnography faculty of the University of Budapest (1952–4), he was appointed research assistant (1967) of the folk music research group of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, which he also directed (1970–74). Between 1975 and his retirement in 1983 he was academic adviser at the musicology institute of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. He was awarded the degree of doctor of sciences for a study of the medieval folk ballad in ...


Geoffrey Norris

(b Moscow, 15/Nov 27, 1801; d St Petersburg, 15/Oct 27, 1848). Russian composer, singer and teacher of Moldavian descent. He showed an early aptitude for music, and in his youth taught himself to play the violin, cello, piano and guitar. In 1811 he was sent to St Petersburg, where he was enrolled as a chorister in the court chapel. At this time the director of the choir was Bortnyansky, who was so impressed by Varlamov’s musical ability that he took him on as a pupil. In 1817 he graduated to the adult choir, but he left in 1818 after his voice had broken. The following year he went to The Hague as director of the choir in the Russian ambassadorial chapel, and was attached to the court in Brussels of Princess Anna Pavlovna, the Russian wife of Prince William of Orange. He returned to Russia in ...


Betty Vergara-Pink

revised by Mariann Ábrahám

(b. Barcs, Oct 22, 1881; d. Chicago, May 15, 1978). Hungarian piano teacher. Initially self-taught, she studied with one of Liszt’s last students, Árpád Szendy, at the National Hungarian Royal Academy of Music, graduating in 1907. After consolidating her teaching experience at the Ernő Fodor School of Music (1907–8), she began to give concerts and develop her own private teaching practice. For a short period (1918–20) she taught the methodology of piano teaching at the Academy, where she became the first female instrumental teacher to get an appointment (15 February 1919). Thereafter she concentrated on her private teaching practice. Her detailed, systematic observations on piano teaching, music psychology and performance form the basis of her first book, Zongoratanítás és zenei nevelés (1921). The book appeared, revised and expanded, in German in 1929, and it immediately established her reputation as an outstanding teacher well beyond Hungary, and attracted invitations to give lectures, courses and broadcasts throughout Europe. In ...


Yannis Belonis

(b Brussels, Dec 10, 1885; d Athens, July 30, 1967). Greek composer, music educator, and critic. One of the leaders of the Greek National Music School, he was born in Brussels during a business trip of his father (a professor in the Army Cadet’s School), though he claimed Athens as his birthplace. Varvoglēs’ artistic nature emerged from a very early age, specifically in the field of painting. He attended the School of Fine Arts where he apprenticed with Nikēphoros Lytras and Giōrgos Roilos (1900–02) while at the same time he took music lessons. In 1902 he went to Paris to study law, but despite disapproval from his family, he decided to pursue a musical career.

In Paris he enrolled in the Paris Conservatoire where he apprenticed, under the instruction of Xavier Leroux and Georges Caussade. He stayed in Paris until 1920, with a short break between the years ...


(b São Paulo, July 16, 1934). Brazilian composer and teacher. He began his music studies in 1946 with Ilíria Serato, then attended the piano classes of Ubelina Reggiani de Aguiar at the Conservatório Dramático e Musical of São Paulo (diploma 1953). He then studied harmony and conducting with Martin Braunwieser and choral singing. From 1956 to 1968 he studied composition with Camargo Guarnieri, who strongly influenced his adherence to musical nationalism and neo-tonalism. From 1957 he taught music education at various institutions, in São Paulo, and since the 1970s he has taught at the Art Institute of the University of Campinas (1975–9), at the Escola Superior de Musica S Marcelina (1976–9) and the Art Institute of the University of the State of São Paulo (UNESP) since 1980. His compositions have earned him several prizes, including the Casa de Goethe prize (1969) for his piano piece ...


Selena Rakočević

(b Gornja Badanja, Loznica, Aug 18, 1946). Ethnologist and ethnochoreologist. Vasić studied ethnology at the faculty of philosophy in Belgrade, where she gained the PhD in the field of folk dance of the Podrinje region in 1988. In her youth, Vasić was a dancer and dance teacher in the Cultural-artistic society (Kulturno-umetničko društvo, KUD) ‘Gradimir’ in Belgrade (1964–76). She became a curator of the Ethnographic Museum in Belgrade in 1978. Since 1990 she has worked at the department of ethnomusicology, Faculty of Music in Belgrade, as a professor of ethnology and ethnochoreology. She also taught ethnochoreology at the Academy of Arts in Novi Sad (1996–2007), at the Faculty of Music at ‘Saints Cyril and Methodius’ University in Skopje, Macedonia (1993–5), and at the Academy of Arts, University of Banja Luka, Serbia, since 1999. Beside pedagogic activity, Vasić has been the head of the Centre for Folk Dance Research of Serbia (Centar za proučavanje narodnih igara Srbije) since ...


(b Moscow, 18/March 30, 1872; d Moscow, March 11, 1956). Russian composer, conductor and teacher. He began systematic music studies in 1888 as a private pupil of Richard Nokh and then took lessons with Grechaninov (theory), Sergey V. Protopopov (harmony) and Konyus (composition). From 1891 to 1896 he studied law at Moscow University and attended the conservatory (1895–1901) as a pupil of Taneyev (counterpoint and form), Ippolitov-Ivanov (composition) and Safonov, leaving with a gold medal. He conducted at the Mamontov Private Opera, Moscow (1903–5), and organized and conducted the Historic Concerts in the city (1907–17). From 1918 he gave concerts and lecture-concerts in Moscow; in 1925 he participated in the organization of music broadcasting there. He taught orchestration and composition at the Moscow Conservatory (1907–41, 1943–56) where he was appointed professor in 1907 and head of the faculty of orchestration in ...


Danka Lajić-Mihajlović

(b Zakuta, nr Kraljevo, 1903; d Opatija, 1963). Serbian music educator and ethnomusicologist. He learned to play various folk music instruments as a child. After gaining basic music education in Kraljevo, he enrolled at the Prague Conservatory, but when he did not receive a promised scholarship, he returned to Belgrade and continued studies at the ‘Mokranjac’ music school. Following his graduation (1930), Vasiljević moved to Macedonia to be a teacher, and also worked as a conductor, violinist, and composer, while during holidays he collected traditional music. In teaching music literacy, he introduced his own method based on singing native traditional songs. In 1937 Vasiljević returned to Belgrade to become a lecturer at the newly founded Music Academy (today: the Faculty of Music). Besides teaching music theory, he translated works in music theory into Serbian and wrote his own studies. After World War II he was engaged in establishing the folk music department at the Radio Belgrade. At the Music Academy, he began teaching musical folklore among other courses. During fieldwork expeditions he notated music ‘by ear’ until the 1950s, when he acquired a sound recorder. By implementing a scholarly approach to folk music, Vasiljević solidified the founding of ethnomusicology in Serbia. He also actively participated in the establishing of the department of musical folkore at the Music Academy (...