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Composer biographies

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by pianolady, Apr 10, 2010.

  1. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    It's time for our annual 'Composer Biography Roundup'!
    [​IMG]

    :lol: :lol:

    Below is a current list of composers who are in need of a biography on their page. Several of our members have already written one or more composer biographies, but as you can see we need to fill in a few more. Whether you have already written a biography or not, please contribute a little more of your time so your friendly administrators don't burn out. :wink: Feel free to ask us for guidance if you need help, or just post a note right here saying which composer bio you are willing to write. Thank you! :)

    Bowen
    Janacek
    Lutoslawski
    Martinu
    Mayerl
    Oswald
    Respighi
    Stanchinsky
     
  2. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Can't help noticing that half of these are composers I introduced to the site. And I know the unwritten rule...
    I'll do Tveitt, Vaughan Williams, and Warlock in any case.
     
  3. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Obamanation, unfortunately...
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    Grocholski
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    Julius
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    Obamanation, unfortunately...
    (My inflated two cents)

    For those composers on this site who have the 3 compositions or less featured, they should be moved to the _Various page. It will save the effort of writing a biography to a composer who gets less than 100 DL a month. But should someone audition more compositions, then the composer could always be "resurrected" from the abyss (aka _Various).

    -me
     
  4. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    The decision whether or not a composer gets his own page is made rather arbitrarily. I've added composers for only one recording, sometimes because I intend to do more of them, sometimes because I think that composer is somehow important, even if he wrote little for the piano. One might righly argue that e.g. Cage is a more important piano composer than e.g. Vaughan Williams. There's no logic to it. But if we got more help in compiling bios, I'm sure we would create more composer pages. Some really obscure composers however, had better stay in the _Various page.
     
  5. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    JG - can you take on another bio for us? Or any of you other members? Come on....please help us a little bit :!:
     
  6. RSPIll

    RSPIll New Member

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    I'll work on Saint-Saens.

    Scott
     
  7. RSPIll

    RSPIll New Member

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    P.S.

    Where do you want us to post them? Here?

    Scott
     
  8. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thanks Scott! Okay, I've adjusted the list to reflect the minus three that Chris will do, plus the Saint-Saens that you'll do. Probably best if you email it to me.
     
  9. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Great, thanks !
     
  10. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    I have a little extra time over the next month or two, so I can sign up for Janacek's bio. :D
     
  11. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Sure, Sarah. :D Just send it to me or Chris when you have it ready. Thank you!!!
     
  12. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist

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    As promised, I have prepared a first biography, that of Alberto Nepomuceno.

    Alberto Nepomuceno (1864-1920)
    Though later overshadowed by Heitor Villa Lobos, Alberto Nepomuceno was the founder of the Brazilian national school.
    He was born in Fortaleza, capital of the north-eastern state of Ceará, in Brazil. He began his musical studies with his father, Víctor Augusto, a violinist and the organist of the Cathedral of Fortaleza. In 1872 his family moved to Recife capital of Pernambuco, where he continued his studies with his father until the latter’s death in 1880. In 1882 he became the director of the Recife Carlos Gomes Club and the following year was active as a violinist at the Santa Isabel Theatre. In 1884 he returned to Ceará and in 1885 moved to Rio de Janeiro, where he was active as a pianist at the Beethoven Club and formed a duo with the ’cellist Frederico Nascimento. In 1886 he took up his duties as teacher at the Beethoven Club while still learning harmony.
    Even though he his sympathies lay with the Republicans, he was given a degree of official recognition by being received by the imperial family.
    In 1888 he played his Dança de Negros (Negro Dance) at the Iracema Club in Fortaleza, a piece with local colour.
    In August of the same year he left for Rome to further his studies, enrolling at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia and studying with Giovanni Sgambati. He was able to continue his studies thanks to an official award and in 1890 he entered the Stern Conservatoire in Berlin, graduating two years later. His String Quartet No.3, written in 1890 and subtitled “Brazilian”, is one of the earliest attempts to weave Brazilian folklore into a work cast in classical forms.
    It was in Berlin that he became acquainted with Hans von Bülow, conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic and met Walborg Bang, a pupil of Edvard Grieg, whom he married in 1893 in Christiania (Oslo). The couple lived for a time in Bergen, in Troldhaugen, Grieg’s country house.
    Grieg was to prove a major influence both musically and as a model for Nepomuceno’s establishing of a Brazilian national school. His Suite Antiga (Suite in the Ancient Style), which he wrote in Troldhaugen in 1893, is clearly fashioned after Grieg’s Suite from Holberg’s Time. Grieg enjoyed the work and insisted it be published by his own publisher, Peters.
    The same year saw the writing of his Piano Sonata in f minor, the first work in this form to be written by a Brazilian.
    Retuning to Brazil via Paris, he was able to meet Saint-Saëns and Vincent d’Indy.
    In 1895 the couple was back in Brazil, and he became organ teacher at the Instituto Nacional de Música in Rio de Janeiro. Between 1896 and 1906 he was active at the Popular Concert Association, promoting Brazilian composers. Considering that at the time Portuguese was not considered appropriate for opera or art song, it took some courage on his part to present a series of songs written in the vernacular at the Instituto Nacional and he was much criticised for this.
    In 1900 he met Mahler in Vienna and discussed the staging of his opera Artemis, but nothing came of this. In 1910 he conducted concerts of Brazilian music, including some of his compositions, in Brussels, Geneva and Paris. It was in the latter he met and became a friend of Debussy.
    In 1913 his opera Abul was staged in Rome.
    Walborg and Alberto had a daughter, Sigrid, who was born with only her left hand. It was for her he wrote two sets of pieces: the 1906 Five Small Pieces, which were premièred by her at a school concert in 1907, and two nocturnes, which she played in concert in 1919.
    He resigned his position at the Instituto Nacional de Música in 1916, devoting the last fours years of his life to composition and to promoting younger composers, including Villa-Lobos.
    He died in Rio de Janeiro.

    I am still working on the others (Janacek, Vaughan Williams and Henrique Oswald).
     
  13. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Wow that's a pretty hefty bio Richard 8)
    Good stuff, thanks for that. I have put it on the site. Great when members take the trouble to
    contribute to the site content.

    Most bios contain a brief overview of a composer's oeuvre (not just the piano works).
    I don't see that here as such, you only mention a couple of works. I'm not saying you need to
    change this one, but it could be something to keep in mind.
     
  14. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thanks from me too, Richard. I've taken Nepomuceno off the list. (wonder where my little rodeo guy image went...)
     
  15. musical-md

    musical-md Active Member

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    Ok, then I won't.
     
  16. musical-md

    musical-md Active Member

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    Please disregard. I just noted that the post was quite dated. I will do S-S.
     
  17. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    BTW, Richard, I'd volunteered and have written a bio for Janacek... all I need to do is polish it up, fact-check it, and post it here. Just thought I'd speak up so we don't end up with two bios. :D
     
  18. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist

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    My! That is so! And I was going to talk about his symphonies and some of his other works (which I have on CD). I could write something about them, that is no problem. Would you like me to do that?

    Well, Sarah, if you have Janacek ready there is little use in my starting it, is there? It is that Monica mentioned it was to be done.
     
  19. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Would be nice, and doing the composer a favor. Don't make the bio too big, though. I'd suggest pruning the whole a bit afterwards.
     
  20. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Sorry if there was some confusion. Sarah should do the Janecek since she claimed it in january. Thank you, both! :)
     

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