(b Alzey, Rheinhessen, Germany, Dec 14, 1834; d Deal Beach, NJ, July 30, 1907). American pianist, teacher, conductor, and composer of German origin. He studied with Aloys Schmitt in Frankfurt, making his début there in 1848. Later he studied with Vincenz Lachner and toured Bavaria. After a two-year stay in London, he moved to the United States in 1854, settling in Philadelphia. A scholarly performer, for the next twenty years he gave annual series of chamber music concerts and piano recitals, introducing many classical works to American audiences. He gave recitals devoted entirely to the piano music of Chopin and Schumann, a rare feat at the time. In 1866–7 he performed the complete piano sonatas of Beethoven in a series of matinées in New York. In 1873 he moved to Chicago, where he gave momentum to the musical life of the city and founded the Beethoven Society choir. His goal being education through the works of the masters, he gave several “historical” recitals with programs designed chronologically, from Couperin to Brahms. Fannie Bloomfield Zeisler was one of his pupils....
Francisco J. Albo
William D. Gudger
revised by Andrew D. McCredie
(b Lettin, Sept 7, 1880; d Munich, Feb 25, 1957). German composer and conductor of Latvian birth. After early education in St Petersburg, he studied natural sciences at German universities. In Leipzig he also studied music with C. Heymsen and R. Teichmüller in 1901, and the following year became a pupil of Max Reger (counterpoint) and Martin Krause (piano) in Munich. After a few years of travel, during which he befriended Henri Matisse in Paris, Wolfurt served as choral director at theatres in Strasbourg (under Pfitzner) and Kottbus before the outbreak of World War I. During the war he returned to Latvia to manage a paper mill; afterwards he lived for a while in Stockholm and then Berlin, where he taught composition at the municipal conservatory (1936–45). From 1923 to 1945 he also served as the secretary of the music division of the Prussian Academy of the Arts. Wolfurt taught composition at Göttingen (...
N. Lee Orr
(b Bethlehem, PA, April 4, 1863; d Bethlehem, PA, Jan 12, 1933). American conductor and organist. He served as organist-choirmaster at Trinity Episcopal Church in Bethlehem from 1881 to 1884 before studying under Rheinberger in Munich. After returning to Bethlehem he was organist at the Moravian Church and at Lehigh University. In 1882 he organized a choral union and in 1898 he founded the Bethelehem Bach Choir. On 27 March 1900 he conducted the Bach Choir in the first complete American performance of Bach’s B Minor Mass. From 1905–11 he held a music appointment at the University of California, where he organized a chorus of 300 and also established a Bach choir of 125, which presented the St Matthew Passion and the B minor Mass in 1909–10. After returning to Bethlehem he reorganized the Bach choir, leading the Bach Festivals at Lehigh University until his death. In addition to performing as an organist, Wolle helped found the American Guild of Organists. He played a major role in the introduction of Bach’s choral music into the United States....
Klaus L. Neumann
(b Emmerich, Lower Rhine, April 8, 1910; d Emmerich, June 25, 1989). German choirmaster and musicologist . He studied German philology and musicology in Cologne with Kroyer and Bücken and in Berlin with Schering. After some years as a publisher’s reader, his work as a choral conductor began in 1942 and resulted in the formation of the Norddeutscher Singkreis in Hamburg in 1950. Wolters’s excellent work with this choir has had a lasting influence on the style of other choirs. His series of 120 songsheets, Das singende Jahr (1951–68), drew on old and new German material and on folksongs from all over Europe. He was a co-founder, with César Geoffray, of the European Federation of Youth Choirs, and helped to shape the federation’s ‘Europa Cantat’ festivals. He composed many songs and choruses, and prepared several editions, notably of works by Monteverdi (including a critical edition of the Vespers, ...
Philip L. Scowcroft
(b Heckmondwike, Jan 24, 1875; d London, Jan 18, 1953). English composer, conductor and flautist. He gained early experience playing the flute in orchestras in Harrogate, then at Bournemouth under Dan Godfrey. He subsequently conducted at various London theatres (among them the Adelphi, Terry's, Daly's and Drury Lane), for over 30 years. He toured the USA with Messager's Véronique and recorded excerpts from the Savoy operas. He also composed musicals of his own, but these have survived less well than the splendidly scored orchestral works produced for Boosey & Hawkes, both original pieces and arrangements, for whom he was a staff composer.
His compositions include suites and separate movements, many betraying his northern origins and evoking the outdoors, also a concertino for his one-time instrument, the flute. His most durable piece is ‘Barwick Green’ from the suite My Native Heath, inspired by his home county of Yorkshire and used as the signature tune to the long-running BBC radio programme ‘The Archers’. This apart, only ...
(b London, March 3, 1869; d Hitchin, Aug 19, 1944). English conductor . His father, an optician and engineering model-maker, was a keen amateur cellist who also sang in the choir of St Sepulchre’s, Holborn, in London. Wood’s early aptitude for music was mainly nurtured from home, though he also took organ and piano lessons from E.M. Lott, the organist of St Sepulchre’s, and from the age of 14 won public notice as an organ recitalist. At the RAM (1886–8) he studied composition with Prout, organ with Charles Steggall and piano with Walter Macfarren, and he also developed skill as a piano accompanist for singers, playing for Manuel Garcia’s lessons. Ambitious as a composer, he had several songs and other short pieces published while he was still at the Academy; three operettas were later produced, though without success.
In 1889 Wood was engaged as musical director of Arthur Rousbey’s touring opera company, subsequently moving to a similar post with the Carl Rosa Opera and also assisting Sullivan in the preparation of ...
(b Barton-on-Sea, May 27, 1953). English composer, choral conductor and percussionist. He studied composition with Boulanger in Paris before becoming organ scholar at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge. The New London Chamber Choir was founded by him in 1981 to perform medieval and Renaissance music alongside contemporary repertory. He was professor of percussion at the Darmstadt summer courses between 1982 and 1994, becoming increasingly involved in building percussion instruments, and established the London Centre for Microtonal Music, and its associated ensemble, Critical Band, in 1991. His awards number the Gemini Fellowship (1993), the Arts Foundation Fellowship for electro-acoustic composition (1994–6) and the Holst Foundation Award (1995).
Wood's major compositions reflect diverse interests. His song cycles for soprano and percussion are among several works stemming from oriental ideas, while Phaedrus, for voice and ensemble, belongs to a group of works inspired by ancient Greek subjects. In addition he has explored African traditions, and all his output has been influenced by rituals and ceremonies of various kinds. In the later 1980s, Wood moved away from a predominantly vocal output for two of his most ambitious scores: ...
Rodney H. Mill
(b Boston, MA, Nov 6, 1902; d Cambridge, MA, July 18, 1969). American choral conductor, organist, and music educator. At Harvard University he studied history (BA 1924) and music (MA 1926), and on a Paine Traveling Fellowship he studied conducting under Malcolm Sargent at the Royal College of Music, London (1927–8). As an undergraduate he was accompanist for the Harvard Glee Club and on graduating he was appointed instructor of music at Harvard and conductor of the Radcliffe Choral Society (1924). Later he conducted the Pierian Sodality Orchestra (1928–32) and the Harvard Glee Club (from 1933), and served as university organist and choir director (from 1940); he succeeded A.T. Davison as James Edward Ditson Professor of Music (1954–69). In 1958 he resigned all conducting and performing posts to devote himself to teaching. From 1951 he broadcast a series of lectures called “Tomorrow’s Symphony” on Boston radio (WGBH). He was first president of the College Music Society (...
(b Ipswich, July 12, 1937). English composer and conductor. He received his early musical education at Westminster Abbey, where he was senior chorister. After graduating from Cambridge University (BA 1959), he studied conducting at the GSM with Norman Del Mar and worked as a professional horn player at Sadler’s Wells Opera (1960–61). In 1961 he joined the music staff of the Royal Shakespeare Company at Stratford-upon-Avon, serving as head of music and resident composer (1963–98); he composed over 150 scores for the company, including incidental music for all of Shakespeare’s plays. His musical based on The Comedy of Errors won the Ivor Novello Award and the Society of West End Theatre Award for the best British musical of 1976. Woolfenden’s conducting career has included work at Morley College (1968–78) and as principal conductor of the Liverpool Mozart Orchestra (1970–92) and Warwickshire SO (...
(b Hartford, CT, Jan 7, 1923; d Charlottesville, VA, March 16, 1994). American composer, keyboard player, conductor, and teacher. He studied piano with Charles King, organ with Ernest White at the Pius X School of Liturgical Music in Manhattanville, New York, composition with Franz Wasner, and chant at Solesmes Abbey in France. In 1944 he enrolled at Catholic University of America as a seminarian; he was ordained a priest in 1947 and received a master’s degree in Romance languages in 1948. He continued composition studies with nicolas Nabokov at the Peabody Conservatory and Nadia Boulanger. Woollen was the youngest charter faculty member of Catholic University’s music department in 1950. Originally in charge of choruses and chant studies, he later taught composition, paleography, history, organ, art song literature, and diction. He attended Harvard University (MA 1954), where he studied composition with walter Piston and musicology with Tillman Merritt. In ...
(b Cheam, Surrey, Feb 20, 1948). English conductor. He studied conducting with Boult at the RCM and the harpsichord with Leonhardt in Amsterdam. His first association with the Royal Ballet was as soloist in Frank Martin’s Harpsichord Concerto for Kenneth MacMillan’s Las hermanas, after which he was invited to conduct the touring company in 1973. From 1974 to 1984 he was principal conductor for Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet; he also worked as guest conductor with the Royal Ballet, the Australian Ballet and the National Ballet of Canada, and was music director of New Sadler’s Wells Opera for seasons of operetta in the 1980s. In 1991 he became music director of both the Royal Ballet in London and the Birmingham Royal Ballet, reverting to guest status with the London company in 1995. He was appointed music director of the BBC Concert Orchestra in 1989 and has appeared with other major British orchestras, making his opera début at Covent Garden with ...
(b Troppau, Austrian Silesia [now Opava, Czech Republic], Oct 8, 1860; d Altona, Hamburg, March 20, 1944). German composer and choral conductor. He grew up in Dresden, and in early youth moved to Hamburg to study with Ernst August Heinrich Chevallier; in Altona he was conductor successively of the Allgemeine Liedertafel (from 1887), the church choir (from 1893) and the Singakademie (from 1895). In addition, he was organist of the Friedenskirche (1895–1903) and then of the Johanniskirche (1903–26), and from 1903 he directed the city orchestral concerts. Elected to the Prussian Academy of Arts in 1917, he received the Goethe Medal in 1936, and in 1937 he retired from public musical life. He had met with Brahms’s esteem as a young man, and in his early vocal music he took Brahms and also Palestrina, Lassus, Schütz and Bach as his models. Later he turned more to instrumental music, and his chamber pieces, his Brahmsian symphonies and the ...
revised by Roger Hickman
(b Nová Říše, Moravia, Dec 30, 1756; d Vienna, Sept 26, 1808). Czech composer, conductor and violinist active in Vienna, brother of Anton Wranitzky. He studied singing and the organ, violin and viola at the Premonstratensian monastery grammar school in Nová Říše, and later at Jihlava (1770–71). At Olomouc he studied theology and became an excellent violinist. At 20 he went to Vienna, where he entered the theological seminary and served as its choirmaster. He continued his musical studies with J.M. Kraus (the Kapellmeister to the Swedish court, who visited Vienna in about 1783). Suggestions that he was also a pupil of Haydn remain unsubstantiated.
He served as music director for Count Johann Baptist Esterházy in the spring of 1784 and was appointed director of the newly created Kärntnertortheater orchestra in October 1785, a position he held until 1787, when he joined the Burgtheater orchestra. He was named its director in either ...
(b London, UK, June 23, 1916). American band director, conductor, and educator of English birth. He immigrated to the US in 1923 and studied at the University of Miami (BA 1937, MEd 1947). He was instrumental in founding many band organizations including the Florida Bandmasters Association and the National Bandmasters Association. He led the Miami Senior High School (1938–54), the Purdue University Marching Band (1954–85), and the Purdue Symphony (1969–85). His Purdue University Marching Band set the standard for American college marching bands and many of his marching innovations are in use today. He developed the McDonald’s All American Marching Band and led many high school concert bands on international tours. He is chairman of the board and chief executive officer of the John Philip Sousa Foundation. His many honors include honorary life president of the American Bandmasters Association and an honorary doctorate of laws from Troy State University (...
(b Wasco, OR, March 8, 1925).American music educator and conductor. She studied at the University of Oregon (BA 1948, ME 1953). She married Al Wright in 1953. As a teaching band director she led the high school bands of Elmira, Oregon (1948–53), Otterbein, Indiana (1954–61), Klondike, West Lafayette, Indiana (1963–70) and William Henry Harrison, West Lafayette, Indiana (1970–84). The William Henry Harrison Band toured extensively throughout the USA, Europe, Central America and Canada; she won the Gold Medal of the World Music Contest of Kerkrade, Holland in 1974. She is the founding president of the Women Band Directors National Association, founding editor of Woman Conductor magazine, and the first woman band director elected to the American Bandmasters Association and the National Band Directors Hall of Fame of Distinguished Band Conductors. In 1995 she was elected to the National Hall of Fame of Distinguished Woman Band Conductors. She is a vice president of the John Philip Sousa Foundation, where she chairs the Sudler Flag and Cup awards, which acknowledge the achievements of outstanding high school and middle-school bands. She is the composer of two quickstep marches, ...
(b Kraków, 1850 or 1851; d Krynica, Dec 17, 1915). Polish violinist, conductor and composer . He was educated at the music school of the Kraków Technical Institute, studying the violin with Ignacy Wójcikiewicz, theory and wind instruments with Piotr Studziński, and the piano with Józef Blaschke. Later, he studied at the Vienna Conservatory. While serving in the Austrian army Wroński played the violin in the orchestra of the 70th Infantry Regiment under the direction of Michał Zimmermann, from whom he learned much about the craft of instrumentation. He soon became assistant conductor, and in 1867 he went with the orchestra to the Paris Exposition Universelle, where they won first prize. For several years he was musical director of the band of the 40th Infantry Regiment, from which, with great effort, he was able to create a full symphony orchestra. The latter had a great impact on the musical culture of Kraków, promoting important works and becoming part of the Old Theatre (Teatr Stary), where it accompanied performances and played during the entr'actes (under the direction of S. Koźmian). The orchestra also collaborated with the Kraków operetta (under the direction of K. Hofman), and stimulated the amateur musical scene. In ...
(b Mayen, Germany, June 19, 1961). German trombonist, arranger, and bandleader. He began his music studies in 1980 with Jiggs Whigham in Cologne. From 1983 to 1984 he was a member of the band led by the clarinetist and saxophonist Pierre Paquette, then joined Rod Mason. While with Mason (until 1991) he wrote his first arrangements and also worked as a studio musician and as a teacher at the Musikhochschule Cologne and at the university in Bonn. From 1992 he led his own band, Joe Wulf and his Gentlemen of Swing, and changed his style from traditional jazz to swing of the 1930s and 1940s. From October to December 1998 he toured with Buddy DeFranco and Terry Gibbs.
Gaynor G. Jones
revised by Bernd Wiechert
(b Münster, Jan 28, 1832; d Braunfels, Sept 7, 1902). German conductor, pianist and composer , father of Ludwig Wüllner. From an early age he studied the violin and the piano and composed music. His father was a distinguished philologist who was director of the Düsseldorf Gymnasium; when he died in 1842 the family moved to Münster, where Franz studied the piano and composition with Carl Arnold; from 1846 to 1850 he studied with Anton Schindler in Münster and Frankfurt. From 1850 to 1854 he went on concert tours, playing Beethoven's late sonatas, and completed his studies, visiting Berlin, Brussels, Cologne and Leipzig and meeting many of the important musicians of his day. A lifelong friendship linked him with Brahms from 1853. From 1856 he taught the piano at the music school in Munich before being made music director of Aachen in 1858. He returned to Munich in 1865...
(b Southampton, May 18, 1860; d Munich, Jan 21, 1938). British pianist, conductor and composer of German parentage. She studied the piano and composition at the Stuttgart conservatory and later became a piano pupil of Clara Schumann, Joachim Raff, Franklin Taylor, józef Wieniawski and others. Her composition teachers in London included Arthur Sullivan, C. V. Stanford and Frederick Bridge; she won the Mendelssohn Scholarship three times in succession, which enabled her to study composition at Leipzig, with Carl Reinecke, in 1886. She made her début as a pianist at Crystal Palace in 1882, and followed this with engagements in London, Leipzig, Meiningen and Berlin. Germany was her home for most of her life; she became a teacher in Hanover and Berlin, and eventually moved to Munich. In 1898 she established a women’s orchestra in Berlin which she conducted and took on tour until 1900. Her sisters, Adela, Alice and Matilde, changed the family name to Verne, and pursued careers as pianists in England....
revised by Rosemary Williamson
(b Bushey, Herts., May 22, 1822; d London, March 13, 1890). English conductor, composer and writer on music . The son of Henry Wylde (b 1795), an organist and gentleman-in-waiting to George IV, he became organist of Whitchurch and then at 16 had piano lessons from Moscheles; from 1843 to 1846 he studied with Cipriani Potter at the RAM, where he was later a professor of piano. He was organist of St Anne and St Agnes, Gresham Street (1844–7). In 1851 he gained the degree of MusDoc at Cambridge. He was a juror in the musical instrument section in the international exhibitions of 1851 and 1862, and was made professor at Gresham College in 1863.
In 1852 the New Philharmonic Society was founded, with Wylde as a guarantor, to introduce new or rare works. The first six concerts were conducted by Berlioz and Wylde, with Wylde in the second concert directing his own Piano Concerto in F minor (with Alexandre Billet), in the fourth his scena ...