(b Alessandria, March 20, 1851; d Alessandria, May 2, 1894). Italian organist and composer. He began his musical studies with his stepfather, Pietro Cornaglia. From 1868 to 1871 he attended the Milan Conservatory, studying the piano with Antonio Angeleri and composition with Lauro Rossi and Mazzucato. His graduation exercise, the cantata Caino e Abele, won the first prize and a medal of honour. He toured abroad as a concert pianist, but from 1880 until his death was organist at the cathedral in Alessandria, where he also founded a school of composition, singing and piano, and conducted concerts for the Associazione filarmonica alessandrina. He composed three operas, Isabella Spinola (1877, Milan), Maria di Warden (1884, Venice) and Una partita a scacchi (1892, Pavia), the latter based on Giuseppe Giacosa's popular comedy. In these works, which did not have much success, Abbà Cornaglia remained uninfluenced by the innovatory tendencies of the ‘Scapigliatura’ and of Catalani and by the new ...
Giovanni Carli Ballola
revised by Roberta Montemorra Marvin
(b Città di Castello, Jan 26, 1595; d Città di Castello, ? after March 15, 1679). Italian composer and teacher. He travelled to Rome with his brother Guidobaldo, an artist, in 1623 and 1625 (Andrae, 17–19), and was employed at S Giovanni in Laterano from January 1627 to May 1629. According to his verse autobiography (in I-Rvat ) he served there ‘seven years and some months’, or from 1622, but neither this nor his statement that he held earlier positions in Città di Castello and at the Gesù in Rome have been confirmed. He subsequently served as maestro di cappella at the cathedrals of Città di Castello (June 1629 to May 1632, December 1635 to November 1640 and May 1677 to March 1679) and Orvieto (December 1632 to 1635). In Rome his principal tenures were at S Maria Maggiore, where he trained boy sopranos (...
(b Le Pallet, nr Nantes, 1079; d Saint-Marcel, nr Chalon-sur-Saône, April 21, 1142). French philosopher, poet and musician of Breton origin. After studying philosophy in Paris, he taught dialectic at the cathedral school. His love affair with Heloise, the young niece of Canon Fulbert, brought him fame as a musician. However, after they had secretly married in 1118 Fulbert had Abelard castrated. Heloise became a nun and he became a monk at St Denis. His highly original scholastic method and his restless and blunt nature aroused opposition to his teaching; principal among his opponents was Bernard of Clairvaux. After condemnation by the Council of Sens in 1140, Abelard found support from Peter the Venerable, Benedictine Abbot of Cluny.
Abelard’s songs are few beside his numerous theological and philosophical writings. Heloise’s testimony suggests that his love songs must have been important from both a literary and a musical point of view. In a later letter (probably revised by Abelard) she declared that he had ‘the gift of poetry and the gift of song’; he ‘composed quite a number of metrical and rhythmic love songs. The great charm and sweetness in language and music, and a soft attractiveness of the melody obliged even the unlettered’. These songs, presumably in Latin, have all been lost: they have not been identified among the anonymous repertory....
(b c1420; d 1497). English church musician. He was noted as a fine singer and skilful organist. After service in the household of Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester (until 1447), and as a lay clerk of Eton College (1447–51), where he was one of the four clerks specially responsible for singing polyphony in the college chapel, he became a clerk of the Chapel Royal in 1451, and Master of the Choristers there from 1455 to 1478. His duties included teaching the boys to play the organ and to sing plainsong and improvised polyphony; also it seems probable that he was instrumental in the introduction about this time of the use of boys’ voices in composed polyphony. The award to him in 1464 of a Cambridge MusB reflects his eminence in the musical profession – he is the earliest known recipient of this degree – while the patronage of Bishop Bekynton brought him valuable sinecures in the diocese of Bath and Wells. His last years were spent as a resident of Sanctuary Yard, Westminster Abbey....
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 ...
(b Sommersell [now Nieheim], Westphalia, April 17, 1904; d Berlin, Dec 21, 1997). German composer and organist. After studying with Wilhelm Schnippering at the Lehrerseminar (Büren), he studied church music in Münster with Werner Göhr and Fritz Volbach (1924–5). In 1925 he went to Berlin where he pursued further study with Alfred Sittard and Max Seiffert at the Akademie für Kirchen- und Schulmusik and attended Wilhelm Middelschulte’s organ masterclasses. He also studied Gregorian chant at the Benedictine abbeys of Gerleve and Beuron. In 1928 he became a lecturer at the Berlin Akademie, where in 1936 he was promoted to professor. After the war he was appointed to the post of ordinarius for Catholic church music at the Berlin Hochschule für Musik, where, for a time, he was also deputy director. He served as the organist at St Hedwig’s cathedral in Berlin from 1934 until its destruction in ...
revised by Axel Helmer
(b Stockholm, Jan 19, 1860; d Stockholm, Jan 20, 1938). Swedish composer, organist and conductor. He attended the Swedish Royal Academy of Music (1882–6), studying counterpoint and composition with J. Dente, and was a pupil of Franck in Paris (1887–8). In Stockholm he was coach at the Royal Opera (1888–90), organist at the synagogue (1890–1928), music teacher at Norrmalm’s grammar school (1895–1923) and teacher at Richard Anderssons Musikskola (1897–1909). From 1886 he conducted several choirs, including the Bellman Choir (1895–1926), which he also founded, and the Philharmonic Society (1900–03). Åkerberg’s compositions often approach the style of Swedish folk music, especially the ballads Kung Svegder and Prinsessan och Svennen. They are technically sound but conventional.
MSS in S-Skma, Svenska Tonsättares Internationella Musikbyrå
(b Plymouth, bap. Jan 28, 1740; d Walsall, bur. March 27, 1791). English organist and composer, eldest son of John Alcock (i). As a chorister under his father at Lichfield Cathedral, he deputized for him from the age of 12, and from 1758 to 1768 he was organist and master of the song school at Newark. In 1766 father and son both went to Oxford, the former to take the DMus degree and the latter the BMus degree which he gained with a setting of Pope’s Messiah (in GB-Ob ). His final appointment, at St Matthew’s, Walsall, followed in 1773, not long after his father had opened a new organ there. His published compositions include church music, songs and cantatas, together with convivial and instrumental music (including a duet for two bassoons or cellos). A volume of anecdotes, The Instructive and Entertaining Companion (Wolverhampton, 1779; ?unique copy in ...
(b Astigarraga, Guipúzcoa, 1893; d Seville, Dec 7, 1970). Spanish composer and organist. He studied with Donostia and others in San Sebastián, with Otaño at the Comillas Seminary, and in Paris with Eugène Cools. In 1919 he was appointed maestro de capilla at Orense Cathedral and then organist at Seville Cathedral, where he became ...
(b Alach, nr Erfurt, May 27, 1584; d Erfurt, Feb 12, 1640). German composer. He was sent to school at Erfurt in 1590 and went on to study theology at the university there in 1598, gaining the bachelor’s degree in 1599 and the master’s degree in 1603. He taught at Erfurt from 1600, beginning at the Reglerschule; from 1601 he was Kantor at St Andreas and from 1607 was also rector of the school connected with it. He abandoned teaching in 1609 and became a pastor: he worked in the parishes of Ilversgehofen and Marbach, near Erfurt, until 1610 and then moved to Tröchtelborn, near Gotha, where he stayed until 1621 and was probably also Kantor. He published most of his music during these years. He was likened to Orlande de Lassus as an ‘Orlandus Thuringiae’ and he himself was conscious of living at a time of great musical activity: as he wrote in the preface to his ...
(b Norwich, Aug 15, 1836; d Durham, Feb 10, 1908). English cathedral organist, teacher and composer. After training as a chorister at Norwich Cathedral (1846–8) and at Rochester Cathedral (1848–50) Armes became pupil-assistant to J.L. Hopkins at Rochester (1850–56). He was subsequently organist of Trinity Church, Gravesend (1855–7), St Andrew’s, Wells Street, London (1857–61), Chichester Cathedral (1861–2) and Durham Cathedral (1862–1907). He took the Oxford BMus in 1858 and DMus in 1864. He was resident examiner in music at the University of Durham from 1890 and became its first professor in 1897; he was examiner at Oxford from 1894. During the 1880s Armes collated and indexed the four sets of manuscript partbooks surviving at Durham. These contained the service music together with separate organ parts of a wide repertory from Tallis to Purcell, formerly used in the cathedral. He composed three oratorios, various anthems, services and other church music....
(b Washington, DC, Nov 21, 1947). American hymn writer and seminary professor. She grew up studying piano, then focused on religious studies as an undergraduate at Southwestern at Memphis University, later called Rhodes College (BA 1969). She earned advanced degrees from Chicago Theological Seminary (MDiv 1973, DD 1983), the University of Notre Dame (MA 1987), and Boston University (DD 1989). She was ordained by the United Church of Christ in 1974 and served at various churches until accepting the position of professor of worship at the Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in 1989. Having written songs as a child, she became interested in writing hymn texts in the mid-1970s. She has written nearly 200 poem-texts, including “Arise, your Light Has Come,” “O Loving Maker of the Earth,” and “When we are Tested,” most of which have appeared in various hymnals and edited collections. Some of her texts have been designed for special occasions, such as “Send us your Spirit” for the ...
Ruth M. Wilson
revised by Stephen L. Pinel
(b Philadelphia, PA, Aug 16, 1771; d Brooklyn, NY, Apr 30, 1861). American organist, church musician, teacher, instrument-maker, tunebook compiler, and composer. In addition to serving as the organist of Trinity Church, Peter Erben was a prominent church musician, organ builder, and music teacher in antebellum New York.
Peter was the son of Johann Adam Erben (d c1781), a Philadelphia distiller. By 1791 he was in New York working as a tanner, but turned his attention to music after a bankruptcy in 1796. He was successively the organist of Christ Church (1800), the Middle Dutch Reformed Church (1806), St. George’s Chapel (1808), St. John’s Chapel (1813), and ultimately Trinity Church (1820–39). From about 1800 he was also the founder and director of the Society for Cultivating Church Music and frequently presented public concerts with the charity children. Between ...
(fl c1530–68). Scottish composer, poet, priest and teacher. There are many references to a John Fethy in 16th-century Scotland – possibly not all to the same man; e.g. one to a ‘dominus Johannus Fethy, noster confrater’ who received permission from the Abbot of Arbroath to study abroad at university is perhaps rather too early (1498) to refer to this composer. A note by Thomas Wood (i) in his partbooks ( IRL-Dtc , GB-Eu , Lbl , US-Wgu ) in 1592 recorded that Fethy was a ‘papeist preist’, spent some time abroad, returned to Scotland in about 1530, brought the new technique of five-finger organ playing with him and that he wrote both text and music of O God abufe (MB, xv, 1957, 3/1975 no.37), a partsong in a motet-like style similar to Josquin’s. Traces survive of other songs (both music and text) in the later Claudin style. In the 1540s Fethy was canon of the Chapel Royal and spent a short time as Master of the Aberdeen song school between ...
(b Peoria, IL, July 14, 1939). American jesuit priest, educator, and composer. Best known for the post–Vatican II Catholic liturgical congregational music he composed as one of the “St. Louis Jesuits” in the 1960s and 70s, Foley is nevertheless primarily an educator in the field of liturgy. He earned a PhD in Theology (specialty in Liturgy and Aesthetics) from Graduate Theological Union (1993); studied music at the University of Wichita and St. Louis University; and pursued further composition studies with Samuel Dolin, Reginald Smith Brindle, Paul Fetler, and Dominick Argento.
In addition to founding and serving as the director of the St. Louis University Center for Liturgy, Foley has taught liturgy among other courses at the university. His diverse publications include a book, Creativity and the Roots of Liturgy (Pastoral Press, 1994). His dedication to writing prayerful, scripture-based, and accessible vernacular liturgical music for assemblies led naturally to his founding of the National Liturgical Composers Forum....
(bap. Oxford, May 24, 1688; bur. Oxford, Jan 7, 1741). English organist and music copyist, son of Richard Goodson. He was baptized at the church of St Cross. He succeeded his father as professor of music at Oxford and as organist of Christ Church. Goodson was listed as choirboy at Christ Church from 1699 to 1707 and as singing-man from 1712 to 1718; Thomas Ford ( GB-Ob MS Mus.e.17) stated that he was appointed organist of Newbury on 24 August 1709. He matriculated on 3 March 1714 and graduated BMus on 1 March 1717. A number of manuscripts in Christ Church and the Bodleian Library, Oxford, contain music copied by him, but he does not appear to have been a composer, unless two anonymous works in his hand – an act song, Festo quid potius die ( Ob MS Mus.Sch.C.143, Och Mus 37, 1142b), and an incomplete Ode for St Cecilia's Day, ...
(b Mühlhausen, Jan 13, 1532; d Mühlhausen, April 8, 1598). German hymn writer. He attended the municipal school at Mühlhausen and then studied at Leipzig from 1547 until 1549 and at Erfurt. In 1550, having obtained the bachelor’s degree, he became a headmaster at Mühlhausen, but in 1552 he resumed his studies at Erfurt; he gained the master’s degree there in 1554 and lectured on poetry. In 1559 he married the daughter of an Erfurt senator and in 1562 he became deputy headmaster of the newly founded Pädagogium at Erfurt. An epidemic forced him to leave there in 1563, but he returned after the reopening of the university in 1565 and was appointed dean of the philosophy faculty. In 1566 Emperor Maximilian II honoured him with the poet’s laurel wreath. Because of his Protestant faith Helmbold was dismissed from his university post in 1570 and he returned to Mühlhausen, where at first he reverted to schoolteaching; but in ...
(b Altdorf, nr Nuremberg, 1500; d Joachimsthal [now Jáchymov], West Bohemia, May 15, 1561). German writer of hymn texts and melodies. From 1518 to 1560 he was schoolmaster, organist and Kantor in Joachimsthal. Johann Matthesius, Luther’s first biographer and headmaster of the Latin school there from 1532, was also, until 1565, minister of the church; Herman was associated with him both as a close friend and as a colleague, and thus came into contact with the Reformation from an early date. As early as 6 November 1524 Luther wrote to him as ‘viro pio et erudito’. Herman’s importance lies in his hymns, which were published in several volumes. He wrote both text and music, but most melodies are used for several texts. His poems are rhymed syllabic verses with no fixed metre. His Sunday Gospels, which retell Bible stories in rhymed stanzas, remained models for a succession of works of the same type well into the 17th century. In his endeavours to express Christian beliefs in the form of hymns Herman’s texts are close to those of Luther. Though never attaining the poetic force of the latter’s work, many have retained their place in the standard German Lutheran hymn repertory: above all ‘Lobt Gott, ihr Christen alle gleich’, ‘Erschienen ist der herrlich Tag’, ‘Die helle Sonn leucht jetzt herfür’, ‘Hinunter ist der Sonnen Schein’ and ‘Wenn mein Stündlein vorhanden ist’. Many of his melodies show clear affinities with folk music: in particular the traditions of ...
Mel R. Wilhoit
(b Duncannon, PA, Feb 27, 1838; d Germantown, PA, Sept 20, 1921). American compiler of Sunday-school and gospel hymnbooks, composer of hymns and teacher. He worked as a music teacher in the Philadelphia area, where he became associated with a number of Methodist churches.
His own musical style reflected the developing gospel hymn, which he helped to establish and popularize. In 1878 he joined forces with John R. Sweney, and the two men compiled about 50 songbooks and collections: ‘Sweney and Kirkpatrick’ became almost a trademark, and sales of their books ran into millions. They collaborated with the leading poets of gospel hymnody, and published nearly 1000 of Fanny Crosby’s hymns alone. Kirkpatrick’s collections – he produced about 50 further items after Sweney’s death – were used in revivals and camp meetings, such as the Methodist gatherings at Ocean Grove, New Jersey, and many of his more animated tunes, for example, that of ...
(b Gagnef, Dalarna, Feb 23, 1887; d Stockholm, April 10, 1955). Swedish composer, church musician and teacher. He served as organist in Gagnef from the age of 14 and studied at the Swedish Royal Academy of Music, where he graduated as a church musician (1906) and a music teacher (1908), and where he studied composition with Ellberg and Hallén. Subsequently he conducted at Sondershausen and made other journeys abroad. He was organist at the Trefaldighetskyrka, Stockholm (1906–14), and at the Engelbrektskyrka (1914–55). At the same time he taught music in Stockholm high schools and harmony at the conservatory (from 1919, as professor from 1936). In 1926 he was made a member of the Swedish Royal Academy of Music, of which he was a board member (1937–9 and 1945–55).
Lindberg came from a family with deep roots in Dalarna: several of his ancestors had been peasant violinists, and he himself was steeped in folk music, from which he took many of his themes. He became prominent in the Young Swedes group (...