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Article

Janna Saslaw

(b Breslau [now Wrocław], Aug 13, 1831; d Leipzig, Feb 1, 1902). German composer, theorist, teacher and conductor. He studied first in Breslau and later at the Leipzig Conservatory. He left Leipzig to study the piano with Liszt in Weimar (1849–52); there he heard Wagner's Lohengrin, which greatly impressed him. After returning to Leipzig, he studied with E.F. Richter and privately with Moritz Hauptmann. Jadassohn taught the piano in Leipzig, then conducted the synagogue choir (1865), the Psalterion choral society (1866) and the Musikverein Euterpe concerts (1867–9). In 1871 he was appointed teacher of harmony, counterpoint, composition and piano at the conservatory, and in 1893 named royal professor. His students included Busoni, George Chadwick, Delius, Grieg, Karg-Elert and Felix Weingartner.

Although successful as a performer, theorist and teacher, Jadassohn considered himself primarily a composer. He wrote works for piano, chamber ensemble, orchestra, chorus and solo voices, comprising over 140 opus numbers, but was perhaps best known for his canonic compositions: the Serenade for Orchestra op.35, two serenades for piano opp.8 and 125, the ballet music op.58 and the vocal duets opp.9, 36, 38 and 43. He also edited and arranged works by Bach, Brahms, Chopin, Mendelssohn, Schubert, Schumann, Wagner and others....

Article

Beatrix Borchard

(b Kitsee, nr Pressburg [now Bratislava], June 28, 1831; d Berlin, Aug 15, 1907). Austro-Hungarian violinist, composer, conductor and teacher . He was born on the Esterházy estates into a Jewish family which moved in 1833 to Pest. His talent was recognized at an early age and systematically nurtured. His first teacher was the leader of the Pest Opera Orchestra, Serwaczyński, with whom Joachim made his public début at the Adelskasino in Pest, on 17 March 1839. He went to Vienna to play first for Hauser and then for Georg Hellmesberger the elder, and took lessons from Joseph Böhm, a former pupil of Rode, himself taught by Viotti, both of whom adhered to the classical French school.

By the age of 12 his technique was fully developed, and in early 1843 he began studying with Mendelssohn in Leipzig. The meeting with Mendelssohn was so decisive for the young Joachim that his life can be understood in terms of a mission to promote Mendelssohn's work. The composer arranged for Joachim to receive composition tuition from Hauptmann, and also a good general education. After a successful début playing Bériot's Adagio and Rondo at the Leipzig Gewandhaus in ...

Article

Nathan Mishori

[Shlomi]

(b Warsaw, May 19, 1909; d Beit-Alpha, Dec 29, 1995). Israeli composer and teacher of Polish origin . In his youth he studied the piano, theory and solfège in Kuybïshev, Russia (1918–21), and in 1924 in Warsaw joined the Zionist movement Hashomer Hatzair, playing the mandoline, tuba, baritone and clarinet in its folk orchestras. He graduated from the Teachers’ Seminarium in Poznań in 1928, and in 1930, following agricultural studies in Brno, Czechoslovakia, moved to Palestine, helping to establish a kibbutz in 1932. Only after 1940 did he begin to be involved with music again, at first teaching and arranging music at the kibbutz Beit-Alpha. After a period of concentrated study (1947–53), with Tal and Partos at the New Jerusalem Academy of Music, and privately with Boskovich, he devoted himself to composition and teaching at the district conservatory for kibbutzim at Beth-She‘an Valley, where he was director until ...

Article

Paula Morgan

(b New York, July 21, 1930). American ethnomusicologist. He attended UCLA (BA 1956) and then spent two years on a fellowship (1959–61) in Jerusalem, where he studied privately with Gerson-Kiwi while undertaking field research among the Sephardi Jewish communites of Israel. He returned to UCLA and took the doctorate in 1967 with a dissertation on Judeo-Spanish ballads; his mentors at university included Ki Mantle Hood, Boris Kremenliev, Klaus P. Wachsmann and Walter Rubsamen. After teaching at McGill University, Montreal (1968–9), he was assistant professor (1969–74) and then associate professor at Columbia University (1974–5). He conducted research in Spain on a Guggenheim Fellowship (1975–6), and joined the faculty of the Graduate School, CUNY in 1976. In 1982 he became associated with the University of California at Santa Cruz (1982–9) and at Davis (1989–97), collaborating as an associate researcher with Samuel G. Armistead and Joseph H. Silverman on the series Folkliterature of the Sephardi Jews. He has also been a visiting lecturer at Brooklyn College, Hunter College, SUNY (Stony Brook) and the Hebrew Union College. He served as editor of ...

Article

[Samuel Moses]

(b Halle, May 15, 1795; d Berlin, May 17, 1866). German music theorist, critic and pedagogue. One of the most influential theorists of the 19th century, Marx named and codified sonata form. As a critic he awakened and cultivated early appreciation for the symphonies of Beethoven; as a pedagogue he worked to make music an integral part of the education of the individual and of the development of the German nation.

Marx was the son of a Jewish doctor in Halle. He entered the university there in 1812, studying law, and together with Carl Loewe also studied composition with Türk. He practised law in Naumberg from 1815 to 1821, and in 1819 converted to Protestantism, changing his forenames from Samuel Moses to Friedrich Heinrich Adolf Bernhard. In 1821 he moved to Berlin, where he increasingly gave himself over to music and studied for a short period with C.F. Zelter. The music publisher A.M. Schlesinger made him editor of the ...

Article

David Mermelstein

(b Kostzomo, Dec 25, 1902/Jan 7, 1903; d St Petersburg, June 6, 1999). Russian conductor and pedagogue. The son of a music-loving Jewish watchmaker, he was a gifted pianist, entering the Petrograd (later Leningrad) Conservatory in 1919 (on the same day as Shostakovich). After poor living conditions permanently damaged his hands, he changed to conducting in 1924, tutored by Nicolay Malko. He began teaching at the Leningrad Conservatory in 1929, and in 1937 became conductor of the Minsk PO. Forced to flee the advancing Germans during World War II, he, his wife and infant son undertook a perilous journey to safety on foot, returning to Leningrad in 1944. Refusing to join the Creative Union of Musicians and Composers, he ensured that top orchestral positions would never be his. Although praised for innovations in conducting technique, Musin considered himself tied to 19th-century Russian musical principles. By all accounts, he was a rigorous but beloved teacher with enormous respect for music and its inherent integrity. His numerous conducting pupils included Gergiyev, Temirkanov, Rudolf Barshay, the brothers Semyon Bychkov and Yakov Kreizberg, Sian Edwards and Martyn Brabbins. Musin did not travel outside Russia until ...

Article

William Y. Elias

revised by Nathan Mishori

(b Gelsenkirchen, Aug 21, 1926). Israeli composer and teacher of German origin. In 1933 he moved to Palestine, where he studied the violin with P. Kimari (1934–42) and R. Bergman (1942–7), and composition with Ben-Haim (1941–6) and Tal, graduating from the Rubin Academy of Music, Jerusalem, in 1947. He went to the USA in 1949 to study with Copland at Tanglewood and to attend Kurt Sachs’s lectures at New York University. In 1950 his symphony Ha-sui Yisra’el (‘The Beauty of Israel’) was introduced by the Israel PO under Bernstein, and in 1950 his biblical cantata Sipur ha-meraglim (‘The Story of the Spies’) won him the International Koussevitzky Competition, enabling him to continue his studies at Tanglewood, where the work was first performed in 1952. He also studied under Fine, Shapero and Levi at Brandeis University (1960–61), receiving the MFA in musicology. In Israel he has worked as supervisor (...

Article

William Y. Elias

[Ödön]

(b Budapest, Oct 1, 1907; d Tel-Aviv, July 6, 1977). Israeli composer, string player and teacher of Hungarian origin. Born to an assimilated Jewish upper middle class family, he was a child prodigy and studied the violin with Ormandy. Hubay heard him play the violin at the age of eight and took him as a pupil at the Budapest Academy of Music, where he also studied composition with Kodály. After graduating from the academy in 1924, he was leader of the Lucerne Stadtsorchester (1924–6) and the Budapest Konzertorchester (1926–7). In 1927 he moved to Germany, working as a soloist, and in 1933 he became first violinist of the Jewish Cultural Centre. At the end of that year he returned to Hungary, moving then to Baku to teach the violin and composition at the conservatory (1935) and returning to Budapest as leader of the Konzertorchester (...

Article

William Y. Elias

[Shosh ]

(b Cyprus, April 10, 1948). Israeli composer, teacher and stage director . She was born while her parents were in Cyprus en route to Israel. First taught music at the Tel-Aviv Conservatory and Telma Yalin Music High School, she graduated in 1970 from the Tel-Aviv Academy of Music, where her main study was the piano (she was a pupil of Madeleine Aufhauser); she also completed a degree in philosophy. During her period of compulsory military service, from 1970 to 1972, she was responsible for classical music at Galei-Zahal, the radio station of the Israeli Defence Forces, and wrote on music for Bahmane, the IDF’s weekly magazine. From 1973 to 1974 she studied composition with Hans Heimler in Guildford, England.

After Riseman’s return to Israel, her song cycle Eize yom yafe (‘What a Beautiful Day’) for male voice and chamber ensemble was recorded; a further cycle, Nine Haiku Songs, received its première at the Israel Festival in ...

Article

Christopher Hailey

(August Julius)

(b Monaco, March 23, 1878; d Berlin, March 21, 1934). Austrian composer, teacher, conductor and administrator. He is a central figure in that remarkable flowering of opera in Austria that included the works of Zemlinsky, Berg and Korngold. Integrating his aesthetic plurality (a mixture of Romanticism, naturalism, symbolism, Impressionism, Expressionism and Neue Sachlichkeit), timbral experimentation, strategies of extended tonality and conception of total music theatre into the narrative of 20th-century music has contributed to a more differentiated understanding of central European modernism.

Schreker was the oldest of four surviving children born to Ignaz Schrecker, a court photographer of Jewish birth, and Eleonore von Clossmann, a member of the Catholic aristocracy of eastern Styria. Ignaz Schrecker’s restless travels took him and his family from Vienna to Monaco, Spa, Brussels, Paris, Trieste and Pola before he settled at last in Linz in 1882. After his death in 1888 the family moved to Vienna, where in ...

Article

Robyn Holmes, Peter Campbell and Judith Crispin

[Lazarus]

Robyn Holmes and Peter Campbell, revised by Judith Crispin

(b Tianjin, China, Sept 10, 1934). Australian composer, pianist, and musicologist. Born to Russian-Chinese parents, he emigrated to Australia with his family in 1951. He studied the piano at the NSW Conservatorium of Music, Sydney, where his teachers included Winifred Burston (1952–8), and in San Francisco with Egon Petri (1959–61). On his return to Australia, he taught at the Queensland Conservatorium (1961–5) and lectured on contemporary composition at the University of Queensland. In 1965 he assumed the position of Head of Keyboard at the newly founded Canberra School of Music (now part of the Australian National University), where he became Head of Composition and Head of Academic Studies in 1978, and Professor Emeritus and Distinguished Visiting Fellow in 2005.

Sitsky first came to prominence as a composer at the inaugural Australian Composers’ Seminar (Hobart, Tasmania, ...

Article

Theodore Levin

(b Detroit, March 15, 1943). American ethnomusicologist . He received the BA (1964) and the PhD (1969) at Michigan University, the latter under W.P. Malm. In 1971 he was appointed to the faculty of Wesleyan University, where he was made professor in 1984. He served as editor of Asian Music (1972–87) president of the Society for Asian Music (1987–9) and president of the Society for Ethnomusicology (1989–91). The focus of his early work was the music of Central Asia, particularly of northern Afghanistan, where he conducted fieldwork (1967–8, 1971 and 1972). In the mid-1970s he turned his attention to Eastern European Jewish music, concentrating on music found in the USA. His ethnographic work on Yiddish songs, Yiddish theatre, Klezmer musicians and cantors was complemented by research and writing on the theory and method of ethnomusicology. He has been in the forefront of efforts to forge links between ethnomusicology and sister disciplines such as folklore, performance studies, anthropology, sociolinguistics and cultural studies; he has also made documentary videos and directed theatre projects. As an educator, he has played a key role in the development of the World Music Program at Wesleyan University and its model of a ‘world music community’. He has also worked to open up a dialogue with scholars in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe....

Article

William Y. Elias

(Wolfgang)

(b Düsseldorf, Nov 27, 1918). Israeli composer and violist. He began to play the violin and to compose at an early age; during the years 1932–5 he wrote several works indebted to Reger, an influence which remained perceptible. In 1933 he studied under Eldering at the Cologne Academy, and in 1934 he settled in Palestine, where his studies were completed under Partos (1940–42). Steinberg joined the Palestine SO (later the Israel PO) as a violist in 1942; he has also appeared as a soloist and frequently as a chamber musician (he was a founder of the New Israel Quartet in 1957). From 1969 to 1972 he lectured on chamber music at the Tel-Aviv Academy. The Viola Sonata (1949) showed a first interest in Schoenbergian 12-note serialism, which came to dominate his work. (CohenWE)

Article

Israel J. Katz

(b Vienna, Aug 1, 1901; d New York, July 28, 1988). American musicologist of Austrian birth . He attended the Berlin Hochschule für Musik (graduated 1924) and the universities of Berlin, Graz, Göttingen, Prague and Vienna, simultaneously studying composition (with Busoni, Reitsch and Schreker), musicology (with Adler, Fischer, Lach, Ludwig, Sachs, Schünemann and Wolf) and Judaic studies. He took the doctorate in musicology (Strasbourg, 1928), with Théodore Gérold. Werner taught at Saarbrücken Conservatory (1926–33) and the Jewish Theological Seminary in Breslau (1935–8).

In 1938 he fled the Nazi regime, emigrating to the USA where in 1939 he joined the faculty at Hebrew Union College (Cincinnati) as A.Z. Idelsohn’s successor. There he drew upon the magnificent Eduard Birnbaum collection for his early research on Jewish music. At Cincinnati he conceived the idea for a school of sacred music in New York to be linked with the Jewish Institute of Religion (founded in ...

Article

Michal Ben-Zur

(b Tel-Aviv, Jan 9, 1927). Israeli cellist and teacher. He studied at the academies in Jerusalem and Tel-Aviv, at the Juilliard School in New York and with Pablo Casals. In 1953 he won the Piatigorsky Prize, and he also won prizes in the International Cello Competition in Moscow and the Pablo Casals International Competition in Israel. Wiesel was the first to perform the full cycle of Bach's cello suites in Israel, as well as concertos by Berio, Ligeti and Lutosławski. As dedicatee he has given the first performances and made recordings of concertos and pieces for unaccompanied cello by many Israeli composers. Wiesel was also a founder member of the Tel-Aviv String Quartet (1959–93). He was appointed professor at the music department of Tel-Aviv University in 1965, and has taught many of Israel's leading cellists. He has given masterclasses in cello and chamber music internationally, and has been a jury member in international cello competitions. He specializes in Baroque repertory, and has contributed many articles to ...