- Richard Kershaw
- , revised by Michael Musgrave
(b Berlin, April 18, 1777; d Berlin, Feb 16, 1839). German composer and pianist. The son of an architect, he spent his youth in Templin and Frankfurt, where he studied the flute and piano and composed over 100 pieces, most of them songs. In 1799 he undertook a composition course with Gürrlich in Berlin; a projected course under J.G. Naumann in Dresden two years later was prevented by the latter’s death, and Berger composed a cantata in his memory. On his return to Berlin he became friendly with Clementi, with whom he visited Russia in 1804. Berger remained in St Petersburg for eight years, learning much from a close acquaintance with the music of Field. There he also married, but his wife died within a year. In 1812, Napoleon’s advancing army forced him to flee to London. The public received his piano playing enthusiastically, but homesickness drew him back to Berlin in ...