(b Bucharest, 2/Aug 14, 1893; d Bucharest, Feb 18, 1959). Romanian composer, pianist, conductor, teacher, music critic, and director of music programmes. A leading figure of the first half of the 20th century, he laid the foundation of the Romanian school in music, concert life, and musical journalism. He studied with A. Castaldi, D. Dinicu, D.G. Kiriac, and E. Saegiu at the Bucharest Conservatory (1903–11), completing his education with two periods of study in Paris (1913–14, 1923–4), where he studied with d’Indy at the Schola Cantorum and with Paul Vidal at the Conservatoire. A remarkable accompanist, he worked with Enescu, Thibaud, Mainardi, Moodie, and others during the period 1919–45. As a conductor he always achieved a soberly balanced performance; he conducted more than 1500 performances at the Romanian Opera in Bucharest (1921–59), where he specialized in the French repertory (Bizet, Massenet, and Gounod). In his capacities as conductor of the Romanian Philharmonic Society, and as conductor and artistic manager of the Romanian RSO, he did much to encourage Romanian composers. He was also active as a music critic for Romanian and French reviews. Much of his compositional work was done during his youth, including ...
revised by Ruxandra Arzoiu
( b London, June 5, 1914; d London, Jan 15, 2005). English critic, writer and concert organizer . In 1931 he was appointed assistant secretary of the Organ Music Society; he became secretary in 1935 and invited Marchal, Tournemire, Messiaen and Duruflé to perform in the society’s concerts. He was concert director of the LPO (1940–46) and from 1942 organizer of the Concerts de musique française for the Free French in London. Among the artists whom he invited to appear at these remarkable concerts were Teyte, Goodall, Pears, Britten and Tippett, and following the liberation of Paris many outstanding French musicians also performed in the series, including Poulenc, Bernac, Souzay, Neveu, Thibaud, Fournier, Gendron, Messiaen, Loriod and Dutilleux, several of whom established firm friendships with Aprahamian.
Aprahamian was deputy music critic of the Sunday Times (1948–89) and a regular contributor to Gramophone. Throughout his career he did much to foster French music in Britain; he was Messiaen’s earliest British advocate (they corresponded from ...
Hans Åstrand and Bo Wallner
(b Göteborg, Dec 12, 1887; d Stockholm, Feb 15, 1974). Swedish composer, administrator, conductor and critic. He studied the cello at school in Göteborg and then entered the Stockholm College of Technology. Having passed the examination in civil engineering in 1911, he spent his working life (1912–68) in the patent office. He was largely self-taught although he studied composition and instrumentation with Hallén at the Swedish Royal Academy of Music (1910–11), and partly used the state composer’s scholarships he received between 1911 and 1915 to study in Germany (1911 and 1913). He made his début as a conductor at Göteborg in 1912, when the programme included his First Symphony; thereafter (particularly during the 1920s) he often conducted his own music and that of contemporaries, both at home and abroad (where he promoted Swedish music). From 1916 to 1922 he was kapellmästare at the Royal Dramatic Theatre, Stockholm; he also worked enthusiastically as co-founder and president (...
(b London, Feb 22, 1777; d London, May 8, 1858). English editor, critic and impresario, youngest son of Edmund Ayrton. He was baptized at St Margaret's, Westminster, and probably studied music with his father. In 1794 he was a bass chorus singer at the Ancient Concerts, and by 1803, when he married Marianne Arnold (daughter of Samuel Arnold), a piano teacher. Through the Chapel Royal connections of his father and father-in-law, and the friendship of Frederick Nicolay (Queen Charlotte's music librarian), he had easy access to court circles. But it was his membership in the Society of Antiquaries (1807) that stimulated his serious interest in music history. In 1808 he began collecting materials for a historical music dictionary (never completed), eventually assembling one of the most remarkable music collections of the mid-19th century. Among his circle of acquaintances around this time, mostly journalists and barristers, Henry Crabb Robinson, Martin Burney (the music historian's grandson), Charles Lamb and William Hazlitt were prominent; T.M. Alsager, the ...
[Jones, (Everett) LeRoi]
(b Newark, NJ, Oct 7, 1934; d Newark, Jan 9, 2014). American writer. He studied piano, drums, and trumpet privately and attended Howard University (BA 1954). In the early 1960s he achieved wide recognition for his poetry and plays and for his writings about jazz, which included articles for Down Beat, Jazz, and Jazz Review; a selection of his writings, many from Down Beat, was published in 1967 as Black Music. His book Blues People (1963), the first full-length study of jazz by a black writer, is both a sociological inquiry, using blues and jazz as a means of understanding how African Americans became assimilated into American culture, and a superb discussion of the cultural context of the music in the United States. Besides his activities as a writer, Baraka was involved in many black cultural and community projects. He was a founder of the Black Arts Repertory Theater-School, which was in existence from ...
(b Novosibirsk, Russian SFSR [now Russia], March 16, 1947). Russian drummer, writer, broadcaster, and educator. He began playing jazz in 1962, and after graduating from the state medical institute in Novosibirsk in 1971 he pursued a dual career as a jazz musician and an obstetrician. In 1975 he established Tvorcheskoye Dhazovoye Ob’yedinenie (Creative Jazz Unity), the first association of musicians and jazz promoters east of the Urals. He performed with Vladimir Tolkachev in the Musical Improvising Trio (1975–9), with Igor Dmitriev in various groups (including, from 1977, Zolotoye Gody Dhaza (Golden Jazz Years), with Vytautas Labutis in the quartet SibLitMash (Siberian-Lithuanian Jazz Machine, 1980s), and with Vagif Sadykhov in another quartet (1998), while also working as a freelance with Vladimir Chekasin, Anatoly Vapirov, Igor Butman, Joe Locke, Paul Bollenback, and former members of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, among others. In 1990 he began to broadcast on radio, and in ...
(b Berlin, July 20, 1922; d Hamburg, Germany, Feb 4, 2000). German writer and record producer. Having first studied in Berlin he attended the University of Karlsruhe (1940–42). He was a founder in 1945 of the Südwestfunk Baden-Baden, where he led the jazz department until 1987, and in 1951 of the Deutsche Jazz Föderation. During the following decades he organized and directed many festivals and concert series (including Jazztime Baden-Baden, from 1947; the American Folk Blues Festival, 1962–8; the Berliner Jazztage, later known as the Jazzfest Berlin, 1964–72; the New Jazz Meeting Baden-Baden, which he founded in 1966; and the Olympic Games Jazz Festival in Munich, 1972) and was the producer and host of broadcasts both on radio (from the Baden-Baden festival) and television (“Jazz, gehört und gesehen,” 1954–72); he also organized an annual jazz concert at the Donaueschingen Festival for Contemporary Music (from ...
John Edward Hasse
(b Guthrie, OK, Jan 21, 1899; d Gilmanton, NH, Aug 25, 1985). American writer on music. He attended Dartmouth College and earned the BS in architecture from the University of California, Berkeley. In the 1940s he served as jazz critic for the San Francisco Chronicle and the New York Herald Tribune. He wrote a pioneering serious history of jazz, Shining Trumpets (1946), and with Harriet Janis was co-author of the first history of ragtime, They All Played Ragtime (1950). The latter work established him as the leading authority in this field, and eventually prompted a revival of the music. Also with Janis, he founded Circle Records, a small but significant jazz label which became the first to issue the Library of Congress recordings of Jelly Roll Morton. In 1953 they sold Circle Records – apart from the Morton recordings – to Jazzology Records. From 1947 to 1950...
(b Novellara, nr Reggio nell'Emilia, 5 Feb or Nov 1582; d Ancona, March 9, 1659). Italian dramatist. He spent his first years in Novellara with his relative Camillo Gonzaga. He was trained at the court of Ferrara and Modena where he lived with his brother Guidobaldo (a writer of tragedies) and then at the Collegio Borromeo in Pavia. Despite an offer of service with the Este family he established himself in Ancona (c1604), retaining his residency when he entered the service of the Medici in Florence. He was a member of various academies (including the Intrepidi of Ferrara, the Gelati of Bologna and the Umoristi of Rome); in Ancona he founded the Accademia dei Caliginosi (7 Jan 1624) and organized the activities of the public theatre of the ‘Arsenale’.
Bonarelli's works were performed in various Italian cities and in Vienna, for which court he provided opera-ballettos, pastorals, ...
(b Loughton, Essex, June 8, 1926). English writer on music. He was educated at Winchester and Oxford (where he read history, 1945–8) and had a year's study (1950–51) at Princeton. In 1950, with Stephen Gray, he founded the Chelsea Opera Group and in 1983 he established an orchestra, the Thorington Players. He has held various appointments as music critic, notably for the Spectator (1958–62), the Financial Times (1962–7), the New Statesman (1967–70) and later the Sunday Times.
During the years 1967–72 Cairns worked for Philips Records, taking part in the planning of several substantial recordings, among them works by Mozart, Berlioz and Tippett. These composers, above all Berlioz, are at the centre of his interests; he contributed an introduction and notes to a translation of Berlioz's Les soirées de l'orchestre in 1963 as well as translating and editing his memoirs (London, ...
(b Havana, Dec 26, 1904; d Paris, April 24, 1980). Cuban writer. He worked as a journalist from 1922, writing not only political articles but also music and theatre criticism, and with Roldán he organized the first concerts of new music in Havana. After his imprisonment for having founded a minority party (1927), he turned his attention to the arts. He lived in Paris for a time, meeting Varèse and working with him on the abortive dramatic project The One-all-alone. On his return to Cuba in 1940 he was appointed director of the Cuban Broadcasting System and taught at the University of Havana. During the Batista period he lived in Venezuela, returning after the Revolution to serve as director of the Editora Nacional, and as cultural attaché and ambassador in Paris. As a writer on music he promoted the new trend of musical nationalism based on Afro-Cuban sources and the Cuban Grupo de Renovación Musical. His publications not only contributed greatly to the knowledge of Cuban musical traditions but also put forward an influential account of the true nature of Latin American and Caribbean musics. His novel ...
Philip L. Miller
(b Vitebsk, Belorussia, July 4, 1889; d New York, Feb 9, 1964). American critic and administrator of Russian birth. He studied briefly at Columbia University with D.G. Mason, but left without graduating in 1911. He achieved early success as a piano accompanist and toured with Alma Gluck, Efrem Zimbalist and Jascha Heifetz. In 1925 he succeeded Deems Taylor as music critic on The World, a position he held until 1931. He was music critic on the New York Post (1934–41); among his projects for the promotion of music appreciation was a series of recordings made anonymously by well-known artists and organizations, distributed at cost by the newspaper. In 1936 he was appointed music consultant for NBC radio, and his first assignment was to induce Toscanini to organize and conduct the station's new symphony orchestra, which gave its first concert on Christmas Day 1937. Chotzinoff commissioned the first opera composed expressly for radio, Menotti's ...
(b Leicester, Sept 14, 1919; d Thornton Heath, Oct 26, 1976). English writer on music. He studied the piano privately, and music with Patrick Hadley and Robin Orr at Selwyn College, Cambridge (1938–40, 1946–7; MA, MusB), and worked for the BBC as a music presentation assistant (1947–56), music producer (1956–7), music presentation writer (1957–9) and music presentation editor (from 1965); in the intervening years (1959–65) he was a freelance writer on music. His main areas of research were 19th-century music, especially that of Wagner, Mahler, Bruckner and Delius, and musical semantics.
In 1960 Cooke made a ‘performing version’ of Mahler’s Tenth Symphony, which was first performed at the Proms on 13 August 1964 and subsequently revised in the light of this and other performances; Cooke was always at pains to emphasize that this text did not represent a putative reconstruction of the symphony as Mahler might have completed it but rather a text that carefully followed precedents established in the sketches and thus allowed Mahler’s music to be heard at least in a form not foreign to the composer. His version has won considerable praise; it has been much performed and recorded, and was published in ...
(b Dijon, Jan 13, 1674; d Paris, June 17, 1762). French dramatist. He studied law at Dijon and by 1703 was living in Paris. He became a member of the Académie Française in 1731 and was appointed theatre censor in 1735. His nine tragedies, based on subjects from classical antiquity, are melodramatic and exploit violence and romantic entanglements; they were highly regarded during his lifetime. Idoménée (1705), his first work, was a source for Campra and Danchet’s Idoménée, which in turn served for Mozart and Varesco’s Idomeneo. His masterpiece, Rhadamiste et Zénobie, was first performed in 1711; there are notable similarities between it and Metastasio’s Zenobia, as also between Crébillon’s Xerces (1714) and Metastasio’s Artaserse. Other plays by Crébillon on which operas were based were Semiramis and Pyrrhus. Crébillon’s son Claude-Prosper (1707–77) was also a playwright; he was theatre censor from 1774 to 1777...
Alex Harris Stein
(b Toronto, ON, Feb 13, 1913; d Escondido, CA, May 27, 2001). American writer and record producer. In 1934 she settled in Chicago, where she became active as a jazz journalist and promoter, writing for the Chicago Herald-Examiner and Down Beat, founding the Chicago Rhythm Club, and promoting listening concerts featuring such performers as Earl Hines and Billie Holiday. At one such concert, Dance was responsible for bringing together Benny Goodman and Teddy Wilson in one of the first highly publicized interracial collaborations in jazz. She also produced her first recordings for the Okeh label (1935). In 1937 she relocated to New York, where she produced many of the legendary Duke Ellington small band recordings, collaborated with Red Norvo, Mildred Bailey, and Bob Crosby, and managed Chick Webb, organizing swing battles at the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem featuring the Webb Orchestra and Ella Fitzgerald. Among the many concerts that she organized was Benny Goodman’s historic ...
revised by Jonas Westover
(b New York, NY, Sept 8, 1896; d New York, NY, July 30, 1983). American lyricist and librettist. He studied at Columbia University, where he was a contemporary of Lorenz Hart and Oscar Hammerstein II, and served in the US Navy before becoming director of publicity and advertising in 1919 for the Goldwyn Pictures Corporation (from 1924 known as Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer or MGM). He wrote verse in his spare time, and was asked by Jerome Kern to supply the lyrics for Dear Sir (1924). He also worked with Vernon Duke, Jimmy McHugh, and Ralph Rainger. But he is best remembered for the numerous songs he wrote in collaboration with arthur Schwartz , beginning in 1929 with the revue The Little Show (with “I guess I’ll have to change my plan”). Other collaborations with Schwartz include Three’s a Crowd (1930) and The Band Wagon (1931, containing the hit “Dancing in the Dark”). Their professional relationship extended over a period of more than 30 years to the production of the musical ...
Ora Frishberg Saloman
(b Boston, May 13, 1813; d Boston, Sept 5, 1893). American writer on music. A graduate of Harvard College (1832) and Harvard Divinity School (1836), Dwight manifested an early affinity with the German idealist tradition in his annotated translations of poetry by Goethe and Schiller. As a leading contributor to the Associationist Harbinger (1845–9) and Dwight's Journal of Music (1852–81), which he founded and edited, he elevated criticism to a higher and more educational plane. After the death of his wife in 1860, he spent his last 20 years as resident librarian and permanent president of the Harvard Musical Association, which sponsored an annual series of concerts under his management (1865–82).
Dwight's writings of the 1840s reflect New England transcendentalist currents and a familiarity with such European thinkers as E.T.A. Hoffmann, A.B. Marx, Gottfried Fink, Charles Fourier, F.-J. Fétis, Frédéric Kalkbrenner, Thomas Carlyle and William Gardiner. Championing aesthetic education and informed listening, Dwight proposed that music – as art, science, and language of feeling ennobling and uniting people – be made widely accessible. In America he was a pioneer in describing the humanistic importance and large-scale structures of Beethoven's symphonies....
(b Opava, April 27, 1911; d Třebotov, July 20, 2000). Czech music critic and administrator. He studied law at Prague University (JUDr 1935) and learnt music privately. He was imprisoned during the German occupation (1941–5), and after the liberation worked as an organizer and popularizer in the secretariat of the Prague Spring Music Festival (1948–52). As a member of the Union of Czechoslovak Composers he was secretary of the secretariat (1952–71) and also directed the foreign section for many years; he did much for the growth of wider international cooperation and for the cause of Czech music abroad. He has written many informative articles about contemporary and older Czech music for various periodicals, including Opera, Musical America, Opera News, Opernwelt, Oper und Konzert and Musik und Gesellschaft. In Hudební rozhledy, of which he was an editor (1950–56), he published articles about important premières abroad and gave regular accounts of the domestic musical scene, especially opera. He was a member of the ISCM presidential committee and secretary of the national committee of the International Music Council (...
Pamela M. Potter
(b Iserlohn, Feb 24, 1893; d ?). German writer on music. He studied German, modern languages and music in Munich and Leipzig and was certified to teach languages and singing at the high school level; he then became director of the agricultural college in Goslar. Despite his lack of musicological training, his writings on music and race were widely cited as authoritative by musicologists, including Friedrich Blume, during the Nazi regime. His most widely quoted work, ...
(b Leicester, Dec 19, 1802; d London, Oct 2, 1888). English concert manager and critic. He was apprenticed to his father, a baker and confectioner, before taking violin lessons with François Fémy in London (c1819). His initial interest in music seems to have been nurtured by William Gardiner, who may also have introduced him to London musicians, and in the early 1820s he began working as a violinist at the Philharmonic Society, Concerts of Ancient Music and Royal Italian Opera. In 1825 he sought harmony lessons from Thomas Attwood at the RAM, and taught there as a sub-professor of the violin; two years later he studied counterpoint briefly with Fétis in Paris. He was active as a teacher and ‘fixer’, and wrote music criticism for the Morning Post (1826–42) and The Athenaeum (1830–34), and contributed to the Musical World and the ...