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Alec Hyatt King

revised by Peter Krause

(b Leipzig, July 17, 1804; d Leipzig, Oct 26, 1877). German organist, musicologist, music collector and bibliographer. He was educated at the Thomasschule under Johann Gottfried Schicht, and also studied with the organists Friedrich Schneider and Johann Andreas Dröbs. He played the violin in the Gewandhaus Orchestra (1820–33) and in the theatre orchestra (1821–4). He was organist at the Peterskirche (1825–37) and later at the Nikolaikirche (1837–54). When the Leipzig Conservatory was founded in 1843, Mendelssohn invited Becker to become its first organ professor; among his pupils was William Rockstro. He also gave organ recitals in Leipzig and other German cities.

In his twenties Becker began to collect early printed music and manuscripts as well as musical literature. Based on his important library he published bibliographies, editions of older music and many articles in such periodicals as the Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung...


Sigurd Berg

(b Copenhagen, March 2, 1801; d Copenhagen, Nov 8, 1880). Danish folklorist, teacher and composer. He began composing and playing the flute while still in school. After his matriculation he studied law for a time, but influenced by the composer C.E.F. Weyse he soon dedicated himself to music and attracted attention in 1823 with a cantata for the 200th anniversary of Regensen, the students' college in Copenhagen. Over the next few years he composed several more cantatas as well as incidental music for the Royal Theatre. From 1838 he was organist at the Trinitatis Kirke, and from 1843 singing master at the metropolitan school. He held both posts until his death; they led him to an intensive occupation with church and school singing. He composed a notable set of hymn melodies, many of which are still used in the Danish Church, and edited many collections of partsongs for schools, containing several of his own compositions. He also made an important collection of Danish and foreign folksongs and melodies. In ...


Allison A. Alcorn

(b Kingston-on-Thames, Surrey, UK, March 14, 1940). English dealer in musical instruments, rare music books, music iconography, and related ephemera. After leaving school at the age of 16, Bingham trained as a quantity surveyor and opened his own surveying business in 1961, about the same time he began dealing in general antiques. He had a partnership in a musical instrument business for one year until 1966, when he opened his first independent shop at 247 Kings Road, London. Through extensive travels Bingham obtains and sells both Western and non-Western instruments. He specializes in assembling collections of European woodwinds, illustrating their development also with patent documents, methods, and other materials. His shop at 11 Pond Street features collections of metronomes, oil paintings of musicians, trade cards, tuning forks, and trade catalogues in addition to instruments. Major museum clients include the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), the National Music Museum (South Dakota), the Musée de la Musique (Paris), and the Musashino Academia Musicae (Tokyo), while private collectors have included Joe R. Utley, Nicholas Shackleton, and H. Iino. Bingham has also published several important works on musical instruments, such as William Waterhouse’s ...


Lodewijk Muns

(b Nijmegen, Netherlands, Aug 4, 1812; d Delft, Netherlands, Nov 1, 1896). Dutch musician, music historian, and instrument collector. The son of a musician and instrument seller, he studied flute and violin at the conservatory of The Hague. After positions as an orchestra musician in the Court Chapel and the French Opera of The Hague, with the Casino Paganini in Paris, and as a conductor at the opera of Metz, he returned in 1841 to his native city, where he conducted several choral societies. In 1853 he was appointed city music director in Delft.

Boers was a pioneer of the study of early music in the Netherlands. He started collecting musical instruments about 1870, with an emphasis on the work of Dutch builders. Most of his research on organology has remained sketchy and is unpublished. In 1899 the major part of his collection of some 130 instruments (including a Couchet harpsichord of ...


Albert Cohen

(b Pont-de-Vaux, Ain, April 24, 1633; d Paris, May 4, 1691). French lawyer and man of letters. He is often confused with his great-grandson, Charles-Emmanuel Borjon de Scellery (c1715–95). He was active in the law courts of both Dijon and Paris and is known chiefly for his writings on jurisprudence. He also composed poetry (noëls ‘en patois bressan’), published after his death and later set to music, and is credited with Traité de la musette, avec une nouvelle méthode, pour apprendre de soy-mesme à jouer de cet instrument facilement, et en peu de temps (Lyons, 1672, 2/1678/R), which describes an instrument in vogue throughout France at the time and includes examples of music collected by the author.

DBF (M. Prevost) P. LeDuc: Les noëls bressans de Bourg, de Pont-de-Vaux et des paroisses voisines (Bourg-en-Bresse, 1845) C.-J. Dufaÿ: Dictionnaire biographique des personnages notables du département de l’Ain...


Viorel Cosma

(b Lugoj, 20 March/April 2, 1877; d Bucharest, Dec 19, 1968). Romanian composer, folklorist and administrator. He studied privately in Lugoj with Josif Czegka and Sofia Vlad-Rădulescu, in Blaj with Iacob Mureşianu, in Sibiu with Hermann Kirchner and in Braşov with Paul Richter. Extremely active in the musical life of Romania, he participated in the foundation of the Romanian Opera, the Romanian National Theatre (1919), the Dima Conservatory, Cluj (1920), the Society of Romanian Composers (1920) and the Astra Conservatory, Braşov (1928); during this period he directed the opera houses in Cluj and Bucharest. He collected more than 2000 folksongs, recorded on 214 cylinders, and made use of them in his ten books of Doine şi cântece poporale (‘Doinas and Other Folksongs’) and in eight books of instrumental pieces published as Jocuri populare româneşti (‘Romanian Folkdances’); he also published a scholarly collection, ...


(b Avignon, France, May 18, 1854; d Versailles, France, May 20, 1933). Organist, composer, collector, and writer on musical instruments. Born a count into an old Norman family, he studied organ with Gigout in Paris in the late 1880s and was admitted to the Académie des Sciences Morales, des Lettres et des Arts de Versailles in 1891. Beginning in 1897, de Bricqueville played the organ in the chapel of the palace of Versailles for about 20 years. Writing as a music critic, he enthusiastically promoted Wagner but also appreciated earlier French opera. His studies of historical instruments, instrument collecting, and music iconography, while largely superseded by later research, offer valuable insight to the state of scholarship at the turn of the 20th century. He described his private collection of instruments (mainly European of the preceding three centuries) in three published catalogues, the last being Catalogue sommaire de la collection d’instruments de musique anciens formée par le Cte de Bricqueville...


Dorothy de Val

(b Melrose, Aug 8, 1858; d Dropmore, nr Canterbury, Aug 22, 1929). English folksong collector and scholar. The great-granddaughter of John Broadwood (1732–1812), founder of the piano firm, and daughter of Henry Fowler Broadwood (1811–93), she spent her youth at the family home at Lyne, Sussex, where she developed an interest in local folksong. Inspired by her uncle, John Broadwood (1798–1864), she reissued his collection of folksongs, Old English Songs (1843) with H.F. Birch Reynardson as Sussex Songs (1890). She also travelled with Baring-Gould to Cornwall, to collect folksongs, and collaborated with J.A. Fuller Maitland to publish English County Songs (1893), thus establishing herself as a key figure in the folksong revival.

Her arrival in London (1894) precipitated a greater involvement with musical life, especially early music for which her voice was well suited. She also flourished as an amateur singer in charitable concerts. She continued her work on folksong, both arranging songs for performance by singers such as Plunket Greene, and composing some of her own in a similar style, with encouragement from Liza Lehmann and Arthur Somervell. In ...


Sarah L.B. Brown

(Adams )

(b New York, May 30, 1842; d New York City, Feb 15, 1918). American collector of musical instruments. Brown was formally schooled until age 16 and married the banker John Crosby Brown in 1864. Family (including six children), church, and charitable work were foremost in her life, but from 1884 her interest in music motivated her to form a systematic, global collection of instruments meant to illustrate their development and diversity. Beginning in 1889, she donated more than 3000 instruments to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, naming the gift in honour of her husband: The Crosby Brown Collection of Musical Instruments of All Nations. The collection, of which she was de facto curator, attracted international recognition and remains the core of the museum’s instrument holdings, which also include her correspondence and a collection of musicians’ portraits.

Brown acquired instruments (including replicas to fill gaps in the didactic sequence) largely through correspondence with far-flung family, friends, missionaries, consular officials, and her husband’s international business connections. Although the collection includes some important masterpieces of art and design, Brown strove to collect typical examples illustrative of their times and places. For advice she corresponded with Alfred J. Hipkins, George Grove, Henry Balfour, Victor-Charles Mahillon, Sourindro Mohun Tagore, and other authorities, and she exchanged information and instruments with other collectors and museums in the USA and Europe....


David Pinto

(b London, c1608; bur. Eydon, Northants., June 8, 1691). English music collector, copyist and amateur composer. On the death of his father in 1621 he was adopted by his wealthy uncle, the merchant taylor John Browne. By the 1630s he was a property-owner in Northamptonshire. In 1636 he was appointed Clerk of the Parliaments, a post that was initially a sinecure, but which led to notoriety at the outbreak of the Civil War in 1642, when he adhered to the parliamentary cause. His office was abolished under the Commonwealth in 1649, but he was restored from 1660 until his death.

Significant as a political archivist, Browne was an astute music lover whose collection is preserved almost entire in Christ Church, Oxford, as part of the music bequeathed by Henry Aldrich. His descendants retained some concordant manuscripts into the 20th century, alongside his parliamentary papers. The collection provides a rare view of Stuart Puritan London up to ...


Brian Boydell

(b Armagh, Feb 1773; d Dublin, Dec 21, 1843). Irish folksong collector. He was the son of a Derby mining engineer who had settled near Dungannon and married Mary O’Quin; he studied music with his brother Anthony. In 1784 he was invited by William Ware to take over his duties as piano teacher and organist at St Anne’s, Belfast, in which town his other brother, John, was already established as a teacher and pianist. He became articled to Ware and soon rose to prominence in Belfast’s musical life; in 1806 he was appointed organist of the Second Presbyterian Church, Rosemary Street, and St George’s, High Street. He became the best-known Belfast piano teacher of his day and was the chief driving force behind the organization of such events as the visit of Catalani in 1809 and the Belfast Music Festival of 1813, in which he took a prominent part as a pianist, playing a Mozart concerto. He was a founder of the Belfast Harp Society (...


Viorel Cosma

(b Iaşi, Oct 3, 1839; d Iaşi, Feb 17, 1923). Romanian writer on music, folklorist and violinist. He studied music in Iaşi (1855–60) and at the Paris Conservatoire with Reber, Clapisson and Alard (1861–5). At the Iaşi Conservatory he held posts as professor of violin (1860–61) and of music theory (1893–1903). He undertook concert tours in Russia, Poland, Bulgaria, Turkey, Croatia, Italy, Asia Minor and elsewhere, and collected folklore material of various peoples, particularly of the Romanians in Moldavia, Dobruja and Transylvania. The published results concerned wedding and burial customs (including remarkable studies on dirges), and Romanian folk music instruments. He was a founder of Romanian musicology, and published research on music education, the musical theatre, military songs and church choirs. He was also the founder of Romanian music lexicography: he edited the first Romanian dictionary of music (Dicţionar muzical...


Viorel Cosma and Owen Wright


(b Silişteni-Fălciu, Moldavia, Oct 26, 1673; dDmitrievka, Russia, Aug 21, 1723). Prince of Moldavia (1683, 1710–11), Romanian scholar, encyclopedist, composer, folklorist and theorist. He started his musical studies under Jeremia Cacavelas in Iaşi and continued them in Istanbul with Kemani Ahmed and Angeli. In the Ottoman capital he compiled a treatise on the theory of Turkish music which used an innovative system of musical notation based on the Arabic alphabet. At the end of this treatise, Edvar-i musiki (‘Textbook of music’), he added notations of some 350 instrumental pieces in the peşrev and semai forms, a few of them his own compositions. These notations provide an important comprehensive record of the late 17th-century Ottoman instrumental repertory.

Back in his country, as Prince of Moldavia (1710–11), he continued his ethnographic and folk music studies, recorded in Descriptio Moldaviae (1716). Appointed councillor to the Tsar of Russia, Peter I, Cantemir settled in Moscow. But he continued his musical activities, compiling (in Romanian) ...


Israel J. Katz

[Capmany Farrés, Aurelio]

(b Barcelona, Feb 26, 1868; d Barcelona, Oct 9, 1954). Catalan folklorist and authority on dance. He was educated in Barcelona and at an early age his interest centred on Catalan folklore and dance, to which he devoted his entire working life. With L. Millet and A. Vives he founded the choral society Orfeó Català (1891); he later established the folk dance society Esbart Catalá de Dansaires (1907) to popularize Catalan dance, which stimulated the foundation of similar societies throughout Spain. He continued to realize his pedagogical aims in primary and secondary Catalan schools; he was professor of folklore and dance at the Institut de Cultura i Biblioteca Popular per a la Dona, the Institut Feminal and the Casa Provincial de Maternidad (1916–47), a research assistant at the Centro de Estudios de Etnología Peninsular and the Instituto Español de Musicología, and librarian of the folklore section of the Archivo Municipal Histórico. In ...


Lyndesay G. Langwill

revised by Rosemary Williamson

(von Ahn)

(b Newcastle upon Tyne, May 19, 1878; d Great Missenden, Nov 2, 1958). English collector and historian of instruments and composer. He was educated in Hanover (1892) and as a Macfarren scholar at the Royal Academy of Music (1893–1902, ARAM 1902), where he studied composition with Corder. After serving as assistant music master at Winchester College (1909–22), he returned to the RAM in 1922 as professor of harmony and counterpoint, becoming a Fellow of the RAM in the same year; he held the professorship until 1940.

Carse’s early compositions include an orchestral prelude to Byron’s Manfred, a dramatic cantata, The Lay of the Brown Rosary and two symphonies; his later works, for student orchestras and beginners, are light, tuneful and individual, and ideally suited to their purpose as teaching material. His reputation, however, rests on his study of the history of instruments and the orchestra, and on his collection of some 350 old wind instruments, which he gave to the Horniman Museum, London, in ...


Gary Galván

(b New York, NY, Sept 15, 1901; d New York, NY, Dec 27, 1967). American private collector and philanthropist. An heiress to the Standard Oil fortune, she was the granddaughter of the company’s cofounder Henry Morrison Flagler. Her father was Henry Harkness Flagler, a founding member of the Walpole Society, president of the New York Symphony Society and its successor, the Philharmonic-Symphony Society of New York, member of the American Administration Committee of the Fountainebleau School of Music, and a collector of musical memorabilia.

In 1930, along with conductor Leon Barzin and music professor Franklin Robinson, Cary established the National Orchestral Association (NOA), a training orchestra reorganized from the American Orchestral Society. She served as president of the NOA until her death in 1967.

Her expansive and private collection of musical memorabilia spanned six centuries and included such singular treasures as the earliest surviving printed score of an opera, Jacopo Peri’s ...


Gerard Béhague

(b Natal, Dec 30, 1898; d Natal, July 30, 1986). Brazilian folklorist, musicologist and writer. He studied medicine in Salvador and Rio de Janeiro, and social and juridical sciences in Recife (graduated 1928). Subsequently he was a professor of history and director of the Ateneu Norte Rio Grandense (1929–30) and professor of history of music at the Natal Instituto de Música, of which he was also a founder (1933). Besides being a state deputy and a practising attorney he directed the Natal Escola Normal and the State Department of Education. His contributions to Brazilian folklore studies were of paramount importance. With others he founded the Sociedade Brasileira de Folklore (1941), over which he presided for several years; he collected numerous repertories of folksongs and tales, compiled anthologies of folklore, contributed many articles to Revista brasileira de folclore and wrote an authoritative dictionary of Brazilian folklore....


Lionel Sawkins

( fl 1740–60). French collector, possibly also a professional music copyist . His name is gold-stamped on the covers of 21 volumes containing full scores of 41 of Lalande's grands motets and smaller sacred works (vols.i–xx in F-V , Ms mus 216–35 and vol.xxi in Pn , Rés Vmb ms 16) and on two volumes of printed music in a private collection (see D. Herlin, Collection Musicale François Lang: Catalogue, Paris, 1993). The printed volumes are copies of cantatas by L.-N. Clérambault, published in 1714–26 and the Premier livre de sonates of J.-M. Leclair, the elder, published in 1723. If Cauvin was also the copyist as well as the owner of the Lalande volumes (which are watermarked 1742), his career extended as late as 1757, when the same hand is seen in the copy of Rameau's Les surprises de l'Amour ( F-Pn , Vm2 386), and in nine other volumes of the Decroix collection of Rameau's works. This hand is also seen in manuscripts (in ...


Carlida Steffan

(b Bassano del Grappa, nr Vicenza, July 12, 1848; d Bassano del Grappa, June 23, 1916). Italian writer on music. After graduating in law from the University of Padua (1871), he studied the cello, flute and guitar; he also became an outstanding performer on the lute, which led him to investigate the structure, tuning and repertory of that instrument.

Chilesotti owned a large collection of 16th- and 17th-century tablatures, both printed and manuscript, and was a pioneer in transcribing lute music. His methods were interpretative, in that he picked out the implied polyphony in the tablature and retained the single staff in transcription, using a treble clef. In order for the music to be performed on the guitar he employed a false tuning in E rather than the original tuning in G or A. Many scholars were critical of these choices, finding the transcriptions too guitar-like. Chilesotti’s two principal publications, the ...


(b 1960; d Oct 24, 2000). American fretted-instrument collector, based in Toms River, New Jersey. During the 1990s he amassed more than 1000 vintage and 20th-century guitars, harp-guitars, banjos, mandolins, ukuleles, and other types representing a broad spectrum of designs, many by outstanding American luthiers and some previously owned by famous performers. His collecting activity, concentrated in a few years, drove up prices for fine fretted instruments generally and brought attention to guitars as works of art. Chinery lent generously for exhibitions and to performers, and intended to build a museum to house his holdings. His ‘Blue Guitar’ collection was inspired by a D’Aquisto Centura Deluxe model with a blue finish; Chinery commissioned 22 contemporary makers to build archtop guitars of their own design but all with a blue finish like D’Aquisto’s. Chinery also collected Cuban cigars, watches, automobiles, and comic books, among other hobbies supported by a fortune made from marketing nutrition supplements and other physical fitness products through Cybergenics, a company he sold in ...