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(b Modena, 1722; d Berlin, 1780). Italian soprano, wife of Johann Friedrich Agricola. She was the first of the three leading ladies (the other two were Giovanna Astrua and Elisabeth Schmeling Mara) at the Berlin Opera under Frederick the Great. A pupil of Porpora, Hasse and Salimbeni, she made her début as prima donna in C.H. Graun’s Cesare e Cleopatra (1743). The arrival of Giovanna Astrua in 1748 forced her to take second place, but strengthened her impulse towards oratorio: thus, for example, she sang the leading solo soprano part in Graun’s Tod Jesu at its première in 1755. Burney (Present State of Music in Germany, 1773) wrote of her singing: ‘she is now near fifty years of age, and yet sings songs of bravura, with amazing rapidity … her compass extends from A in the base, to D in alt, and she has a most perfect shake and intonation’. When her husband died in ...

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Karl-Ernst Bergunder

revised by Peter Wollny

(b Grossfurra, Thuringia, Oct 25, 1643; d Gotha, Feb 20, 1676). German composer and writer. After initially going to school in his native town he was sent in 1656 to Eisenach for three years. There he attended the town school, the staff of which included Theodor Schuchardt, a highly respected teacher of music and Latin. From 1659 to 1662 Agricola studied for his school-leaving examination at the Gymnasium of Gotha; the headmaster there was Andreas Reyher, who was the co-author of the Gothaer Schulmethodus, an educational work which set an example for the teaching of music too. In 1662–3 Agricola studied philosophy at Leipzig University and from 1663 to 1668 theology and philosophy at Wittenberg, where he was awarded a master's degree by the faculty of philosophy. His four recorded scholarly essays dating from this period are lost. He had begun to learn the fundamentals of music during his school years, and he may also have been a pupil of the Kantor of the Thomaskirche, Leipzig, Sebastian Knüpfer. He continued his musical training at Wittenberg, completing the study of composition under the guidance of Italian musicians resident there. Returning to his native Thuringia he was able to turn his musical abilities to good use in the Kapelle of the Schwarzburg-Sondershausen court until in ...

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E. Eugene Helm

revised by Darrell Berg

(b Dobitschen, Saxe-Altenburg, Jan 4, 1720; d Berlin, Dec 2, 1774). German musicographer, composer, organist, singing master and conductor. His father occupied an important post as government agent and jurist in Dobitschen. Burney, who visited the Agricolas in 1772, reported that Johann Friedrich’s mother, born Maria Magdalena Manke, ‘was a near relation of the late Mr Handel, and in correspondence with him till the time of his death’; but later Handel research has failed to substantiate this claim.

Agricola began his study of music as a young child. In 1738 he entered the University of Leipzig, where he studied law; during this time he was a pupil of J.S. Bach and visited Dresden, where he heard performances of Passion oratorios and Easter music by Hasse. In 1741 he moved to Berlin, became a pupil of Quantz, made the acquaintance of C.P.E. Bach, C.H. Graun and other musicians, and embarked on a career that touched many aspects of Berlin’s musical life. He became keenly interested in music criticism and theoretical speculation in Berlin, and his work as a musicographer has proved to be his most lasting accomplishment. In ...

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Lini Hübsch-Pfleger

(b Hilpoltstein, nr Nuremberg, 1638/9; d Neuburg an der Donau, bur. May 3, 1697). German composer and organist. He was educated at the Jesuit Gymnasium of St Salvator, Augsburg. In 1660 he wrote the music for a play performed there. On 23 October of the same year he matriculated at the University of Ingolstadt, where he read theology. In 1663 he became a chamber musician and court organist at Neuburg an der Donau to Count Palatine Philipp Wilhelm, who was renowned for his patronage and understanding of the arts. The court Kapellmeister was G.B. Mocchi, who had been a pupil of Carissimi and who in 1675 renounced in Agricola’s favour a prebend that Pope Alexander VII had granted him in 1655. Agricola was required to compose a number of large-scale works for weddings in the count’s family. When the count’s eldest son, Johann Wilhelm, married the Archduchess Maria Anna, sister of Emperor Leopold I, in ...

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Lini Hübsch-Pfleger

(b Nuremberg, c1560–70; d ?Erfurt, after 1601). German composer. In 1601, when he published a collection of motets, Agricola was teaching at the Gymnasium Augustinianum at Erfurt; he can scarcely be identified with the Christianus Johannes Agricola who was a discantist in the Kapelle at Weimar in 1594. The surname ‘Noricus’, used on the title-page and in the dedication, meant ‘born at Nuremberg’, and a Johannes Agricola baptized on 29 November 1564 at St Sebaldus at Nuremberg could be the composer. Yet another Johann Agricola (d 1605), Kantor at St Bartholomäus, Frankfurt, in 1591, was probably not the composer.

As a composer Agricola is known only by Motetae novae pro praecipuis in anno festis (Nuremberg, 1601), dedicated to the Erfurt senate; the bass partbook addresses the same dedication to the Mühlhausen senate, so possibly the collection appeared in at least two editions. The preface is a humanistic essay about the importance of music from ancient times to the 16th century. The 26 motets, for four to six, eight and twelve voices, are settings in a freely imitative style characterized by fluent counterpoint. The exact scansion of the Latin texts, which include some on secular subjects, is evidence of Agricola’s humanistic education and profession....

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Anna Maria Busse Berger

(b Schwiebus [now Świebodzin, Poland], c1486; d Magdeburg, June 10, 1556). German music theorist, teacher and composer. According to his own statements, he came from a peasant family and was largely self-taught in music. By 1520 he was in Magdeburg working as a music teacher. He became choirmaster of the Protestant Lateinschule in about 1525 and retained this position until his death.

Agricola was one of the earliest teachers of music to realize Luther's wish to incorporate music as a central component of Protestant education. His foremost aim in educating students and congregation was to present material as clearly as possible and to reach a large audience. It was for this reason that his early treatises were written in German rather than the customary Latin. His translation of the terms clavis (as Schlüssel), vox (as Stimme or Silbe) and scala (as Leiter) are still used today. His desire to relate music education to everyday life can be seen in his modernization of old-fashioned rules of harmonic and rhythmic proportions, which he related to commercial arithmetic, in particular the Rule of Three, which formed the most important component of arithmetic instruction in Latin schools. He was the only theorist to consider ...

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Lewis Lockwood

(b Groningen, 1443; d Heidelberg, Oct 28, 1485). German humanist and philosopher who was also active as a musician. His early studies took place in Groningen, but in the late 1460s he travelled to Italy for further humanistic training. In 1468 he was at the University of Pavia, where he studied jurisprudence for several years. Later he transferred to Ferrara, where he studied Greek at the Studio and in 1476 delivered a Latin oration for the opening of the academic year in the presence of Duke Ercole I d’Este of Ferrara. This oration praised Duke Ercole’s musical abilities with more than rhetorical flattery; Ercole was remarkably interested in music, and Agricola was formally engaged in December 1476 as organist of the ducal chapel, one of the largest and most opulent in Europe. Agricola’s appointment is confirmed by archival records and by his letters (see Allen); in a letter written at Easter ...

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Hans-Christian Müller

(b 1600–10; d c1659). German composer and organist. It is possible that he is the same person as the Christoph Bauer who entered the University of Würzburg in 1625. From 1632 to 1642 he was at Neustadt an der Saale, from 1642 to 1644 at Bodenlauben and Ebenhausen and from 1645 to 1659 at Münnerstadt. In each place he was town clerk and notary; at Neustadt he was organist as well, and at the last three, which are near Würzburg, he was also an official of the Archbishop of Würzburg. He may have been a pupil of the Würzburg court composer Heinrich Pfendner, on works by whom he based eight eight-part masses (1647). His Geistliches Waldvöglein is a large collection of sacred songs in four parts, artless settings of popular, simple, often clumsy verses, in which, however, ‘the beginnings of the Singmesse’ are discernible (see Ursprung)....

Article

Anthony Hicks

Drama per musica in three acts by George Frideric Handel to a libretto by Vincenzo Grimani ; Venice, Teatro S Giovanni Gristostomo, 26 December 1709.

Handel’s second and last opera written in Italy, Agrippina effectively established his international reputation. According to Mainwaring’s Memoirs of the Life of … Handel (1760) it was performed 27 times (not an unusual run for the main opera of the Venetian carnival) and was enthusiastically received with cries of ‘Viva il caro Sassone!’. The original cast included Margherita Durastanti (a former colleague from Rome) in the title role, Diamante Maria Scarabelli as Poppaea, Antonio Francesco Carli as Claudius, Francesca Vanini as Otho and her husband Giuseppe Maria Boschi as Pallas. Nero and Narcissus were sung by the castratos Valeriano Pellegrini and Giuliano Albertini. Elena Croce (listed as the Agrippina in one MS source) may have replaced Durastanti in some performances. The opera was subjected to revision before performance and possibly during its initial run: there are significant differences between Handel’s autograph and the printed wordbook of ...

Article

Dieter Härtwig

(b Ballenstedt, July 13, 1790; d Berlin, Oct 8, 1873). German pianist, music teacher and composer, son of Carl Christian Agthe. He received his musical education from Ebeling in Magdeburg and Seebach in Klosterbergen before studying composition and counterpoint with M.G. Fischer in Erfurt. In 1810 he settled in Leipzig as a music teacher and second violinist in the Gewandhaus Orchestra, and there published his first compositions. He founded a music academy in Dresden with C. Kräger in 1823 which was publicly endorsed by Carl Maria von Weber; J.B. Logier’s methods of keyboard instruction were used there. In the next decade he set up similar institutes in Posen (1826), where Theodore and Adolf Kullak were his pupils, in Breslau (1831) and finally in Berlin (1832). He was forced to retire in 1845 because of weak eyesight. His compositions include at least nine opus numbers for piano (some with other instruments) and two manuscript songs in the Stiftung Preussischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin....

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Dieter Härtwig

(b Hettstedt, June 16, 1762; d Ballenstedt, Nov 27, 1797). German organist and composer, father of Albrecht Wilhelm Johann Agthe. He first learnt music with his grandfather Johann Michael Agthe, Kantor at the Rathsschule, and his great-uncle Andreas Agthe, a local organist; he later continued his musical studies as a choirboy and as a member of the local Stadtpfeiferei. From 1776 to 1782 he was director of music with the Hündelberg theatrical company in Reval (now Tallinn), where he composed his first Singspiele. He then moved to Ballenstedt to join the court orchestra of Prince Friedrich Albrecht of Anhalt-Bernburg as an organist and harpsichordist. There he became known as one of the best organists of his time and, after further studies with F.W. Rust, as an active composer of Singspiele, songs and instrumental pieces. His best-known work is a setting of Kotzebue’s Der Spiegelritter (1795), which was first performed by an amateur society in Ballenstedt and several times revived. Agthe himself undertook the publication of his only extant published works – two volumes of songs and a set of three easy keyboard sonatas....

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Katherine Hagedorn

(b Simpson, Matanzas, Cuba, Oct 10, 1925; d Los Angeles, CA, May 7, 2010). Cuban drummer. A master drummer, Francisco Aguabella’s expertise in Afro-Cuban sacred drumming traditions included Lucumí batá, Iyesá, Arará, and Abakwá, as well as the popular genres of rumba, comparsa, salsa, rock, and Latin jazz. At age 12, Aguabella began playing Lucumí batá drums with friend and mentor Esteban “Chacha” Vega. At 18, he joined the local Abakwá society Efi Yumane, befriending fellow drummer Julito Collazo. In 1947 Aguabella moved to Havana to work as a longshoreman and musician. He played sacred batá drums for Lucumí ceremonies and performed in the popular “Sun Sun Babae” show at the Sans Souci Club with Trinidad Torregrosa, Raul Díaz, and Merceditas Valdés until the early 1950s. He also played lead quinto for the comparsa band “Los Dandys de Belen.” In 1953 choreographer Katherine Dunham invited Aguabella to join her dance company, with whom he toured Europe, South America, the United States, and Australia for the next four years. In ...

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Thomas F. Heck

(b Madrid, April 8, 1784; d Madrid, Dec 29, 1849). Spanish guitarist and composer. ‘Padre Basilio’ of Madrid, possibly Miguel Garcia, gave him his first instruction in the guitar, an instrument for which tablature notation was still commonly used in Spain. In about 1800 Aguado, like Fernando Sor, was influenced by the Italian Federico Moretti and adopted the conventional staff notation for the guitar; thereafter both Spaniards published their music in the improved manner championed by Moretti, distinguishing the musical parts by the direction of note stems, use of rests, etc. Aguado's artistic career unfolded slowly, owing to the Napoleonic invasion of Spain and its aftermath. He retreated to the village of Fuenlabrada in 1803, teaching and perfecting his technique there until 1824, the year his mother died; his Colección de estudios para guitarra appeared in Madrid in 1820. He moved to Paris in 1825 (while Sor was in Russia) and immediately gained an enviable reputation as a virtuoso and teacher; a revised version of his ...

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Aguang  

Gini Gorlinski

Bronze bossed gong of Minangkabau communities in western Sumatra, Indonesia. It varies in size and pitch but typically measures about 50 cm in diameter and provides a low-pitched rhythmic foundation for various ensembles, particularly the talempong duduak (‘sitting talempong’) gong chime ensemble. Depending on local tradition, the aguang may be suspended from a rack and struck with a wooden or metal beater, or placed on the ground or on the thigh of its seated player and struck with a stick. Its sound commonly marks the initiation of various rituals (often signalling that a water buffalo has been slaughtered) and other formal events. The ...

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(b Mexico City, Dec 7, 1945). Mexican pianist and composer. She studied the piano at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and composition in the workshop of the Conservatorio Nacional de Música under Héctor Quintanar and Mario Lavista. Her extensive output reveals a diversity of techniques and styles without formal adherence to compositional schools or avant-garde trends, but with an emphasis on the search for expressive freedom. Avant-garde techniques, however, are sometimes used to enhance the colour and integrity of her music, as in Navegantes del crepúsculo (‘Voyagers of the Twilight’, 1993), a trio in four movements for clarinet, bassoon and piano, which she describes as ‘a fantasy of abstract lyricism’. In Arabesco for solo recorder, the music explores the technical potential of the instrument and the performer, including the simultaneous use of two recorders, the contrapuntal exposition of the theme through multiphonics and nimble alternation between voice and instrument....

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Kathleen Kuzmick Hansell

[‘La Bastardina’, ‘La Bastardella’]

(b Ferrara, 1743; d Parma, May 18, 1783). Italian soprano. Traditions explaining her nickname describe her variously as a foundling raised by Leopoldo Aguiari, his natural daughter or that of Marchese Bentivoglio, while her pronounced limp was supposedly the result of having been partly eaten in infancy by a dog or hog. Her early studies in Ferrara with Brizio Petrucci, maestro di cappella at the cathedral, and then with Abbé Lambertini revealed her exceptional talents. After her opera début (1764, Florence) and initial successes (Padua, Lucca and Verona, 1765; Genoa, Lucca and Parma, 1766) she settled in Parma, where she met the composer Giuseppe Colla, the new maestro. On 1 January 1768 the court at Parma appointed her virtuosa di camera. She became one of Europe’s most sought-after sopranos.

In May 1768 Aguiari sang at Naples in Paisiello’s Le nozze di Peleo e Tetide for the wedding of the king and Maria Carolina. Paisiello, reportedly out of spite, composed for her two extremely difficult arias, which, however, she carried off triumphantly. At Parma in the summer of ...

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F.J. León Tello

(fl 1st half of the 16th century). Spanish music theorist. He wrote a treatise Arte de principios de canto llano (published between 1530 and 1537/R); it is a conventional work following traditional lines, limited to purely technical aspects of liturgical chant. He regarded the B♭ as a necessary accidental for chant based on F to avoid the melodic tritone and gave rules for the use of plicas; he also categorized intervals according to their effect on the senses, and rejected the Pythagorean classification. Aguilar seems to have been familiar with the writings of his contemporaries, citing Juan de Espinosa and Francisco Tover among Spaniards, Nicolò Burzio, Giacomo Fogliano and Gaffurius among Italians. His quotations are more accurate than those of most writers and add considerably to the merit of the work.

StevensonSM F.J. León Tello: Estudios de historia de la teoría musical (Madrid, 1962, 2/1991)...

Article

Eldonna L. May

(b Brownsville, TX, Nov 2, 1962). American percussionist, improviser, and composer. He received his bachelor’s degree from Corpus Christi State University; his master’s degrees in percussion performance from the California Institute of the Arts, where he studied with John Bergamo; and a DMA in contemporary music performance from the University of California, San Diego, where he studied with Steven Schick and Anthony Davis. An experimental performer and composer, he also studied with AACM member Wadada Leo Smith, who shaped his interest in the improvisatory and free jazz elements of Chicago’s creative music scene. Aguilar’s interdisciplinary approach to composition combines improvised and fully notated musical elements with the use of new technologies and informed by an interest in cultural and critical studies. His compositions, such as Different Paths, Same Destination (2003), incorporate elements of free jazz, structured improvisation, industrial sound, white noise, guitar as a hand-percussion instrument, and spatial sound relationships—while using instrumentation that relies primarily on various percussion instruments. Aguilar’s compositional processes include what he calls “imaginative reaction compositions” whereby he shares with musicians a number of elements—such as poetry, a variety of musical excerpts, and random thoughts and ideas—prior to recording their collective improvisation. The musicians listen to pre-recorded melodic and rhythmic structures Aguilar has composed and create collective, free improvisations, incorporating their interpretation of the shared elements. Dedicated to Julio Estrada, Aguilar’s ...

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Lina Barrientos

(b Huara, April 12, 1931). Chilean composer. He studied orchestration in 1945 with the Dutch teacher Fré Focke and composition at the National Conservatory of the University of Chile. From 1963 he studied conducting at the Cologne Musikhochschule with Wolfgang von der Nahme. He taught in Concepción, first as director of the city’s conservatory and later as director of the Arts Department of the University of Concepción (1980–83). He has published musicological articles in the Revista Musical Chilena and Atenea, and music criticism in the daily newspapers of Concepción and Santiago. He has won many distinctions: the Municipal Art Prize of Concepción (1987), the Regional Prize in Musical Arts (2006) and most prominently, the Republic President Prize in the classical music category (2006).

His works exhibit a marked preference for instrumental writing, especially chamber and piano music, and a profound affinity for serial and 12-tone procedures. His works are generally short, designated by the composer himself as microforms. The strong influence of the writer Franz Kafka and the Chilean poet Vicente Huidobro is evident in his instrumental as well as his vocal music....

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(b Zaragoza, ?Aug 15, 1561; d Zaragoza, Dec 16, 1627). Spanish composer and organist. He probably studied with Melchor Robledo and Juan Oriz at the cathedral of La Seo, Zaragoza. He received holy orders on 19 January 1584 at S Pablo Apóstol, Zaragoza, where he was already in service. On 27 September 1585 he was appointed organist of Huesca Cathedral, where he supervised the construction of a new organ in 1588. Following the death of Juan Oriz, he became first organist of La Seo on 29 September 1603. He remained in that position until his death. By 20 January 1604 he was exempted, because of his eminence, from service at canonical hours except on solemn feasts. Repeatedly over the years the cathedral organ was repaired according to his specifications. In recognition of his Canticum Beatissimae Virginis deiparae Mariae, he received gifts from La Seo (100 libras) and Huesca Cathedral (150 reales). In ...