Griffes, Charles T(omlinson)
- Donna K. Anderson
(b Elmira, NY, Sept 17, 1884; d New York, April 8, 1920). American composer. His earliest musical studies were piano lessons with his sister Katharine. In about 1899 he began to study the piano with Mary Selena Broughton, who taught at Elmira College and who had a profound influence on his personal and musical development; she both suggested and financed his musical studies in Berlin. When Griffes left for Germany in August 1903 his goal was to prepare himself for a career as a concert pianist. In Berlin he enrolled at the Stern Conservatory, then directed by Gustav Hollaender. There he studied the piano with Ernst Jedliczka and Gottfried Galston, composition with Philippe Rüfer, and counterpoint with Max Loewengard and Wilhelm Klatte.
In spite of some recognition at the conservatory as a performer, Griffes became more and more interested in composition and, in September 1905, against the advice of Miss Broughton, he left the conservatory for study in composition with someone more progressive than Rüfer. Between ...