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Adam Mrygoń

(b Kroczyce in Miechów district, Nov 27, 1893; d Kraków, May 12, 1963). Polish composer, conductor and critic. He studied successively at the Conservatory of the Kraków Music Society, the Dalcroze Institute at Hellerau near Dresden, the St Petersburg Conservatory and the Paris Schola Cantorum. In 1931 he took examinations as an external candidate in composition at the Warsaw Conservatory. From 1921 he taught in Poznań, first at the Academy, then, from 1923, at the Conservatory. From 1921 to 1939 he was also active as a choral conductor, working in particular with the Koło Śpiewackie Polskie (singing society) and the Chopin and Moniuszko choirs. From 1945 he was a professor at the State Higher School of Music in Kraków.

During the inter-war period he was chief editor of Przegląd muzyczny and music reviewer for the Kurier poznański and Muzyka polska. From 1946 he edited the series Polska Literatura Chóralna published by the Polish Music Publishers (PWM). He was a founding member, and vice-chairman, of the Society of Young Polish Musicians in Paris (...


Anthony Parr

(Fingal O'Flahertie Wills)

(b Dublin, Oct 16, 1854; d Paris, Nov 30, 1900). Irish writer. His plays, most notably Lady Windermere's Fan (1892) and The Importance of Being Earnest (1895), brought to the Victorian stage a wit that was both scintillating and subversive. Wilde cultivated the image of an aesthete and flouted convention at every turn. He was lampooned (in the decadent character of Bunthorne) by Gilbert and Sullivan in Patience (1881), and a musical ‘Travestie Suggested by Lady Windermere's Fan’ was produced at the Comedy Theatre in 1892. Following Wilde's imprisonment in 1895 for homosexual acts, the composer Dalhousie Young published a pamphlet entitled Apologia pro Oscar Wilde; after his release Wilde planned a libretto for Young's opera Daphnis and Chloë, but the scheme never materialized. Wilde died prematurely in exile, and it was German (largely operatic) interest in his work that was to revive his reputation, beginning with Max Reinhardt's Berlin production of ...


Laura Moore Pruett

(b Boston, MA, Feb 10, 1819; d Detroit, MI, May 7, 1900). American composer and music critic. After graduating from Yale University in 1841, Willis studied composition and theory with Xaver Schnyder von Wartensee in Frankfurt and Moritz Hauptmann in Leipzig. While there, he became close friends with Felix Mendelssohn. Upon his return to New York in 1847, Willis established himself as a music critic, writing for such journals as the New York Trib and The Albion and later editing the Musical Times and Musical World (1852–60), which were eventually consolidated. His text Our Church Music: a Book for Pastors and People (New York, 1856) argued in part against popular sentimental styles used in sacred music. In 1861 Willis moved to Detroit, Michigan, where he resided for the rest of his life. He published a number of collections of vocal music, including Church Chorals and Choir Studies...


Scott Gleason

(b London, 11 Dec 1934; d Belle Mead, NJ, 26 April 1975). American composer, music theorist, and critic of English birth. Winham was educated at the Westminster School (1947–51), and studied at the Royal Academy of Music and privately with Matyas Seiber and Hans Keller before completing the AB (1956), MFA (1958), and PhD (1964) degrees at Princeton University. He married the soprano Bethany Beardslee in 1956.

He was a critic for The Music Review and the recipient of the first PhD in music composition from Princeton, he coined the term ‘array composition’ (see Milton Babbitt), and he wrote the MUSIC 4B PROGRAM (with Hubert Howe) and Music-on-Mini (with Mark Zuckerman) computer music languages. In 1970, with Kenneth Stieglitz, he established a digital-to-analogue conversion laboratory at Princeton, later renamed the Godfrey Winham Laboratory (see Computers and music). With his cohort at Princeton (including ...


[Hell, Theodor]

(b Waldenburg, Feb 9, 1775; d Dresden, Sept 24, 1856). German poet, impresario and journalist. The son of Gottfried Winkler (archdeacon at Waldenburg and from 1779 deacon at the Dresden Kreuzkirche), he displayed a versatility and diligence in Dresden as lawyer, author and critic, translator and editor, and musical and theatrical organizer. He was the mentor of Friedrich Kind's Liederkreis, assistant director of the court theatre and founder-editor of the Dresdner Abendzeitung. He was a friend of Weber and a trustee of his orphaned children. Although his translation of the libretto of Oberon is not of high quality, he wrote an excellent text for Die drei Pintos and was responsible for the first collection of Weber's writings (Hinterlassene Schriften von C.M. von Weber, Dresden, 1828). Winkler was also among the first Germans to recognize and appreciate the operas of Meyerbeer. He wrote under the pen name Theodor Hell....


(b Vacha, 1501; d Mainz, Feb 16, 1573). German theologian . He studied theology in Erfurt from 1516 to 1517, and in 1520 he continued his studies in Wittenberg with Luther. He was ordained in Merseburg and received a curacy in his home community of Vacha. When in 1524 he became a Lutheran and married, he forfeited his ecclesiastical office and worked as town clerk in Vacha. For some years he was a Lutheran pastor in Wenigen-Lupitz and in Niemegk. However, intensive study of the writings of the Church Fathers caused him to turn away from Lutheranism, and by 1533 he was a Catholic preacher in Eisleben. Many apologetic writings followed in which he supported the Old Church and its service. He was summoned to the court in Dresden by the Catholic Duke Georg the Bearded of Saxony, but lost this appointment with the death of the duke and the ensuing Reformation in Dresden in ...


William Brooks

revised by E. Douglas Bomberger

(b London, UK, Feb 16, 1836; d Boston, MA, Feb 7, 1901). American critic, librettist, and composer of English birth. He arrived in Philadelphia about 1840 with his father, Edward Woolf (or Wolf) (d New York, 14 March 1882), a writer, artist, and musician who led orchestras at Mitchell’s and Burton’s theaters in New York after 1843 and was one of the founding members of the New York Philharmonic Society. Benjamin Woolf learned music from his father and played in his theater orchestras. From 1859 to 1864 he led the orchestra at the Boston Museum; thereafter he led orchestras in Philadelphia and New Orleans. He married Josephine Orton, an actress, on 15 April 1867, and they returned to Boston, where Woolf became editor of the Saturday Evening Gazette in 1871; he was also music critic for the Boston Globe briefly in the early 1870s, and in ...


(b Moscow, 19/Dec 31, 1875; d Kharkiv, Jan 19, 1933). Ukrainian composer, conductor and critic. A graduate of Kiev University (1903) he studied music privately with E. Ryb and worked as a conductor and critic in Kiev until 1910. He then continued these activities in St Petersburg and then Moscow where he conducted at the Zimin Private Opera (1916–17). In 1918 he settled in Kharkiv where he added teaching (at the Musical Dramatic Institute) to his activities. His opera Vybukh (‘Explosion’) was the first Ukrainian opera on a revolutionary theme, while his last opera, Duma chornomors′ka (‘Duma of the Black Sea’), is a grand opera based on Ukrainian folk music and is dedicated to Verdi. Polish and Turkish materials are also used to characterize the various national elements of the plot.

(selective list)


Virgilio Bernardoni

(b Trieste, March 2, 1922; d Rome, May 22, 1987). Italian composer and critic. He studied first in Venice with Gian Francesco Malipiero and graduated in composition at the Conservatorio di S Cecilia in Rome in 1944. He then undertook further study with Pizzetti, and lived in Paris between 1947 and 1948. Following a long career as a music critic, on L’unità (1949–56) and La Giustizia (1956–63), he became artistic director of the Teatro Comunale Giuseppe Verdi, Trieste (1966–8), the Rome opera (1968–74) and the Teatro Lirico Sperimentale, Spoleto. From 1973 to 1983 he was president of the Accademia di S Cecilia, Rome; he was also president of the Sindacato Nazionale Musicisti (after 1983) and honorary president of the Arts Academy and of the Rome Istituzione Sinfonica (both after 1985). His numerous prizes for composition include the Premio Marzotto (...


Leah G. Weinberg

(b Exeter, NH, Nov 8, 1961). American Musician, songwriter, record company founder, and author. Zanes was raised near Concord, New Hampshire, and after attending Oberlin College for one year, moved to Boston. There, Zanes, his brother Warren, the bass player Tom Lloyd, and the drummer Steve Morrell formed the Del Fuegos. The roots-rock band produced five albums between 1984 and 1989, with singles “Don’t Run Wild,” “I still want you,” “Name Names,” and “Move with me Sister.” After the Del Fuegos disbanded and Zanes’s solo album Cool Down Time failed to sell, he began to listen to banjo songs, cowboy tunes, and traditional songs that he remembered from childhood. After his daughter Anna was born, Zanes’s dissatisfaction with the American children’s music market led him to form a family-oriented band that merged folk and rock styles and instrumentation. Initially known as the Wonderland String Band, the New York based-group underwent changes in title and personnel, first to the Rocket Ship Revue, and then to Dan Zanes & Friends. The seven-member band has produced nine albums on Zanes’s label, Festival Five Records, which include original songs as well as folk, traditional, and gospel songs from the United States, Jamaica, Africa, and Mexico. ...