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Janet Johnson

[Beyle, Henri-Marie]

(b Grenoble, Jan 23, 1783; d Paris, March 22, 1842). French writer. He was an author, aesthetician, pamphleteer, critic, journalist and dilettante in the highest 19th-century Franco-Italian sense of the word: a partisan of contemporary Italian opera, including both enthusiasts and connoisseurs, and composers but not performers. He was a champion of Romantic modernism and of Rossini in the querelles with Classicists in Milan and Paris during the late 1810s and 20s. ‘Stendhal’ (he pronounced the name so that it rhymed with ‘scandale’) was the most famous of the dozen or so cryptonyms and initials under which he published, and of the 200 he used in his correspondence and affairs. Adapted from ‘Stendal’, the birthplace of Johann Joachim Winckelmann, the name was first employed in Rome, Naples et Florence en 1817, a sketch of ‘modern’ Italy for which he posed as a German melomane. Music was central to the book's pro-Napoleonic subtext, and in fact permeates virtually all his works....


Karl-Ernst Bergunder


(b Erfurt, Aug 31, 1609; d Erfurt, April 5, 1680). German writer on music and organist. He spent his whole life at Erfurt. He attended the St Michael Lateinschule until 1621, when he transferred to the Protestant Ratsgymnasium, which was at that time noted for its fostering of music. One of his teachers there was Liborius Capsius, director of the collegium musicum and an important Erfurt University professor. He matriculated at the university in 1626, took his bachelor’s degree in 1628 and became a Master of Philosophy in 1629. He then became organist at the Protestant Thomaskirche and at the Catholic church of the Neuwerk monastery. From 1632 to 1635 he was Kantor and teacher at the Protestant school of preaching and also studied theology. In 1635 he was ordained and became deacon (in 1638 pastor) of the Kaufmannskirche in succession to Joseph Bötticher, who had won a good reputation as a musician. In ...


Jamie C. Kassler

(b Norfolk, 1702; d London, Dec 15, 1771). English naturalist and amateur musician. In 1724, after studying classics and mathematics at Trinity College, Cambridge, he became tutor to William Windham in Felbrig, Norfolk. In 1737 he embarked with his pupil on a tour of the Continent. From 1738 to about 1742 he and Windham, with Robert Price and others, formed a common room in Geneva for the purpose of performing plays. Stillingfleet, Windham and Price supplied the music, scenery and machines, and Gaspard Fritz led the orchestra. He returned to England in 1743 and in 1761 removed from London to Price's estate at Foxley, Herefordshire, where the two men wrote librettos for J.C. Smith, who visited Foxley in about 1758. Influenced by Price's explication of Rameau's theories, Stillingfleet undertook a partial translation of Giueseppe Tartini's Trattato di musica (Padua, 1754), with comments interspersed. To this he added a long appendix on the origin, power and efficacy of music, based on the doctrine of moral sentiment of Francis Hutcheson. Published anonymously in ...


[Murbach, Hans]

(b Dürmenach, Alsace, April 23, 1873; d Olsberg, Westphalia, May 9, 1920). German writer on music. He studied musicology, literature and art history at the universities of Strasbourg and Berlin and his dissertation on Brentano’s fairy tales received the Grimm prize in 1895. For many years he was the chairman of the Deutscher Schriftstellerverband and fine arts editor of the magazine Der Türmer. He occasionally wrote under the pseudonym Hans Murbach.

An influential popularizer of the fine arts, especially music, Storck wrote widely read histories of music and German literature (Deutsche Literaturgeschichte, Stuttgart, 1898, 10/1926), and his guide to opera, Das Opernbuch, was reprinted until 1949. He advocated a broad range of practical reforms in German musical life, including open-air concerts, systematic singing instruction in schools, state examination and certification of music teachers, and municipal and state financing of public concerts. Storck’s activities as a popularizer were inspired by his conviction that the arts were vehicles of political and moral education, and he hoped that a revival of German musical life would help overcome political and social fragmentation in Imperial Germany. He therefore presented his proposed reforms under the rubric ‘Musikpolitik’ (musical politics), a term based on similar calls for a ‘Kunstpolitik’ (artistic politics) in pre-World War I Germany. Storck’s cultural politics were strongly nationalist, and his writings on art and music during World War I became increasingly marked by a chauvinism and an anti-Semitism that have significant affinities with later Nazi cultural attitudes. Though in ...


Alec Hyatt King

(b Edenbridge, June 22, 1866; d London, Feb 6, 1919). English music critic and musicologist . Educated at Oundle and Pembroke College, Cambridge, he entered the Department of Printed Books in the British Museum in 1889, and served there until his death. Although he never worked in the Music Room, he was encouraged in his research by Barclay Squire. A gifted amateur tenor, he acted as music critic of the Daily Graphic from 1898 to 1902 and contributed regularly to English and foreign journals. Though he was keenly interested in the new music of his time, he was also an ardent Handelian, an enthusiasm partly inspired by his friendship with Samuel Butler, whose literary executor he was, editing the posthumous novel The Way of all Flesh (1903) and several of his other books. Streatfeild’s book on Handel, though old-fashioned in some respects, is a balanced and penetrating study which is still valuable....


Anders Wiklund

(b Stockholm, Jan 22, 1849; d Stockholm, May 14, 1912). Swedish writer and dramatist. He grew up in a musical household in which his parents and siblings all played instruments. Though he did not play himself, he moved in musical circles and enjoyed the friendship of such musicians as Tor Aulin. He favoured Beethoven, Bach and Chopin, and his experience of their music plays an important part in many of his works; but it was after his ‘inferno crisis’ (1894–6, during which time he experienced strong feelings of guilt and paranoia) that his perceptions of music as an art deepened, and that music assumed for him a moral, even religious function. He also studied harmony and developed his own theories about tonality and rhythm. In 1907 he published in the magazine Idun a thesis about music theory and notation in which he advocated free tonality and a greater degree of chance and subjectiveness in music (theories which bear a striking resemblance to those of the Second Viennese School)....


Alfred Grant Goodman

(b Regensburg, May 31, 1898; d Baden-Baden, Aug 18, 1970). German music critic and administrator . He was a répétiteur for a year (1918) at the Regensburg Stadttheater before studying musicology under Sandberger and Kroyer and theory under H.K. Schmidt at Munich University, where he took the doctorate in 1922 with a dissertation on Johann Wilhelm Hässler’s life and works. He was music critic successively of the Thüringer Allgemeine Zeitung in Erfurt (from 1921), of the Berliner Börsenkurier (1927–33) and of the Berliner Tageblatt (1934–8). In 1933–4 he was editor of Melos and then its successor, the Neues Musikblatt (1934–9). He moved to France in 1939, and resumed the editorship of Melos when it was revived in 1946. In the same year he was appointed director of the music division of SWF, Baden-Baden, and in 1956 he became chairman of the ISCM. He worked constantly and energetically to promote contemporary music and young artists; he was an early supporter of Hindemith and helped many young musicians by initiating annual festivals such as Donaueschingen, concert series and regular broadcasts of contemporary music. In the 1950s he wrote a number of opera librettos for Rolf Liebermann. He received many honours, including the Schoenberg medal (...


Karen Ahlquist

(b New York, Jan 26, 1820; d New York, July 21, 1875). American lawyer, musical amateur and diarist , father of George Templeton Strong. He played the piano and the organ as a child and later attended Columbia College; he was admitted to the bar in 1841. In 1869 he founded the New York Church Music Association, which offered public concerts of religious music. He was also an original subscriber of the Philharmonic Symphony Society of New York (founded 1842), of which he was president from 1870 to 1874.

Strong’s diary, with over four million words, confirms him as one of the most comprehensive and important 19th-century commentators on New York life. Along with accounts of personal, local and world affairs, it contains observations on hundreds of musical performances, including orchestral and choral concerts, opera, solo recitals, services at Trinity Church and chamber music. It also describes Strong’s role as an organizer. A conservative idealist, he fought unsuccessfully to excise the music of such composers as Berlioz, Liszt, Robert Schumann and Wagner from Philharmonic programmes in the name of (as he said) ‘fine and great music’. The diary offers a colourful mode of expression, an insider’s view of the politics and economics of musical institutions, and a detailed account of a city’s musical culture....


Hans Heinrich Eggebrecht

(b Strasbourg, Nov 1, 1901; d Berlin, Aug 15, 1988). German music critic and musicologist. After attending secondary schools in Berlin, Ulm and Magdeburg, he studied the violin, piano and composition under private teachers and was self-taught in music theory and music history. From 1920 he made a living as a freelance composer and writer on music in Bremen, Hamburg, Vienna, Paris and Berlin. In 1923–4, with Joseph Rufer, he organized the Hamburg Neue Musik concerts, and in 1927–8 he directed the concerts of the Berlin November-Gruppe; at the same time he worked for various periodicals (e.g. Aufbruch, Auftakt, Melos and Modern Music) and newspapers. In Prague (1928–9) he was chief music critic of the Bohemia and he then succeeded A. Weissmann (1929) as music critic of the Berliner Zeitung am Mittag. He attended Schoenberg's course on musical analysis as an observer (...


William J. Gatens

(b Bridgwater, March 3, 1842; d London, Nov 1, 1923). English writer on psychological subjects with emphasis on the psychology of music. He was from a dissenting (Baptist) family, one of eight children of a merchant and colliery proprietor. After working in his father's business, he entered Regents Park College to read philosophy in preparation for the ministry. He obtained the BA in 1866, continued his studies at Göttingen and Halle, received the London University MA with gold medal in 1868, and was married the same year. In 1869 he became classics tutor at the Baptist College, Pontypool, leaving the following year to be a private tutor and assistant to the editor of the Fortnightly Review. Around this time Sully abandoned his earlier religious views. He contributed several articles to the Fortnightly Review, the Westminster Review and the Saturday Review. In 1871–2 he studied anatomy and physiology in Berlin. A nervous breakdown in the mid-1870s led to recuperative travel in Italy. He settled in Hampstead in ...


Brendan Higgins

(b Chattanooga, TN, Sept 10, 1946). American composer and writer on music. He received degrees in music from Harvard College (BA 1968) and from the Yale School of Music (MMA 1977, DMA in Composition 1982), studying under earl Kim and jacob Druckman . He also took composition lessons with betsy Jolas as a Tanglewood Fellow in 1977. He has served as a guest professor and lecturer at Harvard College (1989), Tufts University (1989–), and the University of Arizona (2002–3), and a professor of composition, music history, and theory at Boston Conservatory (2004–). Among his awards as a composer are an NEA Composers Grant, two Massachusetts Artists Council Fellowships, and a commission from Chamber Music America.

His compositions include five works for orchestra, a symphony for winds, numerous chamber works, Magus for cello and electronic sound, and the theatrical work ...


Jonas Westover

(bc1945). American music critic. Swed attended the University of California at Berkeley, earning a BA in music, and Mills College (MA). He fostered his interests in contemporary music early in his career, which later led to his service as the editor for 20th-century music for the Musical Quarterly between 1992 and 2000. As chief music critic, Swed wrote for the Los Angeles Herald Examiner, the Wall Street Journal, and 7 Days in New York. He has written pieces for the New York Times, the New Yorker, the Economist, Musical America, and Gramophone, among others. Since 1996, Swed has held the position of classical music critic at the Los Angeles Times. Swed has received many honors for his work, including the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award (1994) and the Letter of Distinction from the American Music Center, and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism in ...


Stefan Jarociński

(b Gosławice, March 5, 1850; d Warsaw, June 14, 1923). Polish writer and critic of literature, art and music. In 1874 he completed his studies at the Warsaw Institute of Music, where he learnt the piano with R. Strobel, harmony with Moniuszko and counterpoint with Żeleński; he continued his studies at the Leipzig Conservatory with Jadassohn and Reinecke. In Paris from 1878 to 1882 he attended lectures by Hippolyte Taine on aesthetics, and by Charles Blanc on art history. He won fame for his study of the contemporary French novel (Ateneum, 1881–3), and for a series of articles on literature and the arts (Wędrowiec, 1884–7). He also devoted himself to teaching music, conducting a piano class at the Warsaw Institute of Music (1882–1910). From 1896 to 1909 he contributed regular music criticism to the Kurier Warszawski, Gazeta Polska, Goniec Wieczorny and other journals. Sygietyński’s son, Tadeusz (...


Katy Romanou

(b Tripolis, Arcadia, Greece, ?1880 (?1878/?1881); d Athens, Oct 13, 1959). Greek music historian, journalist, and director of Ethniki Lyriki Skini (‘National Opera’) (1946–53). He was a successful playwright and a man much more involved in the theatrical rather than the musical life of Athens. Nonetheless, his Istoria tis neoellinikis mousikis (‘History of Neohellenic Music’, Athens, 1919) marks a turning point in Greek music historiography, being the first to confine its narration to the Greek state’s time and space, attesting the repercussions of the modernisation of music education in the country. The history is divided into three periods, defined by the dates 1824, 1871, 1891, and 1919 (the two middle being the dates the Conservatory of Athens was founded and then reformed). He gives a lively description of the gradual introduction and assimilation of Western music into the Greek state. He starts with the first foreigners performing in Greece, continues with biographies of the first Greeks to be successful abroad (the composers Spyros Samaras and Napoleon Lambelet, the flutist Eurysthenes Gizas, and the pianist Timotheos Xanthopoulos), the first amateur Greek opera group, and its performances for the Greeks of the diaspora, and the first operas written by Greeks and on a Greek libretto (by Pavlos Carrer and Spyridon Xyndas)....


Anthony Parr

(b Newtown Little, Rathfarnham, nr Dublin, April 16, 1871; d Dublin, March 24, 1909). Irish playwright . Most of his plays deal with Irish peasant life and are written in an expressive prose which was Synge’s rhetorical reshaping of the rhythms of ordinary Irish speech. His most famous play, The Playboy of the Western World (1907), caused riots at its first performance at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, on account of its unsparing portrait of village morality. Synge’s rich idiom is more purely musical in the elegiac tragedy Riders to the Sea (1904), in which a mother awaits the death of her last surviving son. Operatic settings of Riders to the Sea include those by Fritz Hart (1915), Henri Rabaud (1924, as L’appel de la mer) and Vaughan Williams (1937). Synge’s In the Shadow of the Glen (1903...


Anthony C. Baines

revised by Darryl Martin

(b London, 1664; d Spofforth, 1708). English writer on music . He was educated at Westminster School and Trinity College, Cambridge where he matriculated in 1683, becoming a minor Fellow in 1689 and major Fellow in 1690. He played a leading role in the early promotion of Cambridge University Press. He was Regius Professor of Hebrew at Cambridge from 1699 to 1704 when he moved to Spofforth, where he had a rectorship since 1700. He received his doctorate from Cambridge in 1705. His importance to music history derives from his manuscript GB-Och Music MS 1187 (formerly owned by Henry Aldrich) which provides copious information on instruments. The manuscript, which was probably written between 1690 and 1700, consists mainly of 250 numbered sheets on which are recorded details of instruments; much of the information was obtained first-hand from leading players and makers (including Gottfried Finger, John Banister (ii), James Paisible, John Shore and William Bull) and from Talbot’s examination and measurement of instruments provided by these men. Other pages record tunings and tablatures, or quotations from Praetorius, Mersenne and Kircher. The remainder of the manuscript, including sections on ancient Greek music, is in another hand....


Thomas S. Grey

(b Ober-Thomaswaldau, Silesia, Feb 19, 1830; d Berlin, Oct 27, 1907). German music scholar and critic . Initially trained as a schoolteacher, he turned to musical studies at the age of 26. Among his teachers in Berlin were the music theorist Siegfried Dehn and the critic and historian Adolph Kullak. Between 1858 and 1866 he worked as a music critic in Glogau (now Głogów), in Silesia. He then settled in Berlin where he developed a career as a music journalist, teacher, scholar and collector. His interests were divided between historical research and contemporary music. As one of the earliest modern scholars of lute tablature he acquired a notable collection of early manuscript and printed sources which he left to the Prussian Royal Library. This research led to a wider study of the history of notation, culminating in an unpublished monograph of 1901–3 and a variety of journal articles, some of them in the ...


(b Livorno, March 17, 1863; d Livorno, May 30, 1934). Italian librettist and critic. He was a professional journalist who became a newspaper editor and filled a number of public appointments. His earliest libretto seems to have been Pinotta, written for Mascagni in the early 1880s; the score was lost for 50 years. Then came Cavalleria rusticana, a work which, like all of Targioni-Tozzetti's, shows a strong sense of the theatre. In this, as in a number of his subsequent librettos, he worked with Guido Menasci (b Livorno, 1867); it was said that while Targioni-Tozzetti was responsible for the passionate, dramatic sections, Menasci supplied the more elegant, restrained ones. Targioni-Tozzetti was responsible for the first Italian translation of Massenet's Werther, and the Italian version of Mascagni's Amica, the composer's only work to a French text. He is sometimes credited (see for example LoewenbergA) with a share in the libretto of Mascagni's ...


Paula Morgan

(Filler )

(b New York, April 2, 1945). American musicologist and critic . He studied at Columbia University, taking the doctorate in 1975 with a dissertation on Russian opera in the 1860s. He taught at Columbia from 1973 until 1987, when he became professor at the University of California, Berkeley; he was named Class of 1955 Professor of Music in 1997. A wide-ranging scholar, Taruskin has written on the 15th-century chanson, the Early Music movement (of which he is a trenchant critic, seeing it more as an outcome of 20th-century taste than as truly re-creative), on theoretical aspects of Stravinsky and, above all, on Russian music, from the 18th century to the present. His writings, original, highly perceptive and frequently controversial, include articles dealing with views of Russian musical history and textual, technical and interpretative questions in the operas of Musorgsky and Prokofiev. Taruskin is also a vigorous, forthright critic, and is a regular contributor to the ...


Alex Harris Stein

(b Dayton, OH, Oct 14, 1957). American writer, guitarist, and bandleader. He was a staff writer for the Village Voice from 1987 to 2003 (a contributor since 1981) and one of a group of young African Americans writing for the Voice on black culture, politics, and identity. His work focuses on black music and culture from a postmodern, black nationalist perspective and is noteworthy for an unconventional style that Tate describes as blending academic and street culture. One of the first journalists to cover hip hop, he has written about Miles Davis, George Clinton, Jimi Hendrix, Carlos Santana, Bob Dylan, and others. He has contributed to the New York Times, Rolling Stone, VIBE, the Washington Post, Spin, The Nation, Down Beat, and other publications. His books include Flyboy in the Buttermilk (New York, 1992), Midnight Lightning: Jimi Hendrix and the Black Experience (Chicago, 2003), and ...