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Composer biographies

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

  1. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    I think you can safely assume nobody is.
     
  2. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    I will do it. Expect it later on.
     
  3. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Here it is:

    Alexey Stanchinsky (1888-1914)

    Alexey Vladimirovich Stanchinsky was born in Obolsounovo a small town in the Governorate of Vladimir.

    He began his studies early and at the age of six he was already composing. In 1899 his family moved to Logachevo, near Smolensk, where the child was exposed to folk songs, possibly the very same ones that had inspired Glinka many decades before. From 1904 Stanchinsky visited Moscow regularly, being a private pupil of Josef Lhévinne while taking composition classes with Gretchaninov. It was the latter who introduced the boy to Taneyev. In 1907 he entered his composition classes at the Moscow Conservatoire.

    The death in 1908 of Vladimir Stanchinsky, the young man’s father, was to have a profound impact on his mental health, being confined to a lunatic’s asylum for a year.

    Though pronounced incurable he made a comeback and by 1910 was collecting folk songs in the vicinity of Smolensk.

    In 1914 he gave his only recital, which was very well received by the critics, who saw in him the makings of a great composer, a promise which was to remain unfulfilled: later in the year he was found dead near a stream at a friend’s family’s estate, a death that up to now remains unexplained.

    Almost all his music, apart from a song cycle after poems by Robert Burns and some chamber works, all his music was written for the piano. None of these were published during his lifetime, the fist editions dating from the 1930s.

    His main influence was Skryabin, to whom he owes the use of expanded tonality, though he never quite arrived at the latter’s near atonality, leaving, for example, a prelude in the Lydian mode. He wrote three piano sonatas (the earlier one in one movement), etudes, preludes, Mazurkas and a Nocturne, besides a piano trio.

    Eddy will like this one: Lhévinne was Stanchinsky's teacher!
     
  4. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    While being grateful for any missing biographies being provided by members, I find that I'm evaluating them much like I evaluate recordings :roll:
    Maybe it should not be like that.... but quality of writing is as important as quality of playing.
    Not that this is bad, but I'd like you to re-read it and correct some issues like duplicate words and missing punctuation.
     
  5. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Indeed. I write the phrase and it is good. Then I change something and there... Duplicate words. I shall look into this.
     
  6. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    See if this is better:

    Alexey Stanchinsky (1888-1914)

    Alexey Vladimirovich Stanchinsky was born in Obolsounovo, a small town in the Governorate of Vladimir.

    He began his studies early and at the age of six he was already composing. In 1899 his family moved to Logachevo, near Smolensk, where the child was exposed to folk songs, possibly the very same ones that had inspired Glinka many decades before. From 1904 Stanchinsky visited Moscow regularly, being a private pupil of Josef Lhévinne, while taking composition classes with Gretchaninov. It was the latter who introduced the boy to Taneyev. In 1907 he entered his composition classes at the Moscow Conservatoire.

    The death in 1908 of Vladimir Stanchinsky, the young man’s father, was to have a profound impact on his mental health and he was confined to a lunatic asylum for a year.

    Even though he was pronounced incurable, he made a comeback and by 1910 was collecting folk songs in the vicinity of Smolensk.

    In 1914 he gave his only recital, which was very well received by the critics, who saw in him the makings of a great composer, a promise which was to remain unfulfilled for later in the year he was found dead near a stream at a friend’s family estate, a death that up to now remains unexplained.

    Almost all his music, apart from a song cycle after poems by Robert Burns and some chamber works, was written for the piano. None of these were published during his lifetime, the fist editions dating from the 1930s.

    His main influence was Skryabin, to whom he owes the use of expanded tonality, though he never quite arrived at the latter’s near atonality. He also explored modal harmonies, leaving, for example, a prelude in the Lydian mode. He wrote three piano sonatas (the earlier one in one movement), études, preludes, Mazurkas and a Nocturne, as well as a piano trio.
     
  7. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thanks Richard, this version looks fine to me. Only that I would prefer not writing Skryabin, but Scriabin as is the norm here.
     
  8. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    As you wish! There are so many ways of tranliterating Russian names that one gets lost. I for myself transliterate the Russian letter ya in three different ways: ia, ya and ja, so. do follow the norm.
     
  9. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Have you decided against this last biography?
     
  10. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hell no, I just did not get around to putting it on the site yet. Will make note to self to do so.
     
  11. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    all right, then: I have changed the spelling of SCRIABIN, then. This is the only change and it reflects your wishes.


    Alexey Stanchinsky (1888-1914)

    Alexey Vladimirovich Stanchinsky was born in Obolsounovo, a small town in the Governorate of Vladimir.

    He began his studies early and at the age of six he was already composing. In 1899 his family moved to Logachevo, near Smolensk, where the child was exposed to folk songs, possibly the very same ones that had inspired Glinka many decades before. From 1904 Stanchinsky visited Moscow regularly, being a private pupil of Josef Lhévinne, while taking composition classes with Gretchaninov. It was the latter who introduced the boy to Taneyev. In 1907 he entered his composition classes at the Moscow Conservatoire.

    The death in 1908 of Vladimir Stanchinsky, the young man’s father, was to have a profound impact on his mental health and he was confined to a lunatic asylum for a year.

    Even though he was pronounced incurable, he made a comeback and by 1910 was collecting folk songs in the vicinity of Smolensk.

    In 1914 he gave his only recital, which was very well received by the critics, who saw in him the makings of a great composer, a promise which was to remain unfulfilled for later in the year he was found dead near a stream at a friend’s family estate, a death that up to now remains unexplained.

    Almost all his music, apart from a song cycle after poems by Robert Burns and some chamber works, was written for the piano. None of these were published during his lifetime, the fist editions dating from the 1930s.

    His main influence was Scriabin, to whom he owes the use of expanded tonality, though he never quite arrived at the latter’s near atonality. He also explored modal harmonies, leaving, for example, a prelude in the Lydian mode. He wrote three piano sonatas (the earlier one in one movement), études, preludes, Mazurkas and a Nocturne, as well as a piano trio.
     
  12. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Richard, you did not have to re-post the bio for that. I would have changed it anyway.
     
  13. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Just making your work easier.
     
  14. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Much appreciated, thanks. The bio is online now.
     
  15. richard66

    richard66 Richard Willmer Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    But not signed...
     
  16. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Right.. it is now
     
  17. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Okay, here's the bio I came up with for Janacek. Thank you for your patience... I'm sorry it took me so long! Any criticism is welcome.

    By the way, I had italicized the proper names of the operas, piano cycles, etc. in my Word document, but I can't seem to find an "italics" button on the reply setup. Maybe I'm missing something?





    Born on July 3, 1854 in Hukvaldy, Moravia, Leoš Janáček showed musical promise very early in life. His talent first manifested itself in vocal ability; the young boy recieved his first studies in choral singing at the Abbey of St. Thomas in Brno, studying under the tutelage of Pavel Křížkovský. While there he also learned to play the piano and organ. When Janáček was 20 years old he entered the Prague organ school. Although suffering extreme poverty, Janáček managed to make the most of his studies underneath František Skuherský and František Blažek. He graduated with honors in 1875 in spite of being nearly expulsed from the school for a published criticism of one of his teacher's performances. Shortly thereafter Janáček began teaching privately and at Berno's Teachers Institute.

    Though pleased with his position at the Institute, Janáček soon desired to acquire more musical training. After several months at Leipzic Conservatory Janáček transferred to Vienna Conservatory. He only stayed two months, however, due to criticism of his composition and piano performance styles. In Brno again, Janáček settled down and married one of his former students, Zdenka Schulzová, and took an appointment as director of the Brno organ school. This position enabled Janáček to begin to compose more systematically, as well as begin to become more involved in music criticism. During this period, too, the young man became fascinated with folk melodies and began to weave them into his work.

    In the new century, fresh compositions continued to flow from Janáček's pen. His sacred composition Ave Maria and the popular piano cycle On an Overgrown Path were two of the works from this era of his career. Some of these works developed as a result of sorrow in Janáček's life. He and his wife had already lost a son in 1890; to compound his sorrow, in 1902 his beloved daughter Olga became seriously ill. In 1903 she died. Janáček expressed his deep grief through composing his noted opera Jenůfa.

    After only one performance of Jenůfa in his hometown, Janacek was unable to stage any further performances of his opera. Grieved, exhaused, and dejected, Janáček journeyed to the Luhačovice spa to recover his strength and compositional inspiration. He eventually found his verve again and set to work on a set of notable choral, chamber, and orchestral works, as well as several operas. In this surge of productivity, Janáček received great encouragement; his opera Jenůfa was performed in Prague's National Theatre to enthusiastic audience members and critics alike. Finally, Janáček had recieved notice and acclaim.

    This was also a time of new professional and personal relationships. In 1916 Janáček became associated with Max Brod, a critic, dramatist, and translator. Janáček also met a new love, singer Gabriela Horváthová. Upon hearing about the relationship, Janáček's wife Zdenka attemped suicide and "informally divorced" her husband. A year later, Janáček met a very young married woman, Kamila Stösslová, whom he passionately and obsessively loved and corresponded with until his death. The woman provided inspiration for a book and many musical works.

    In 1920, Janáček retired from his teaching position at the Brno Conservatory. However, he continued to teach privately until 1925. He still kept his pen busy; in the autumn of his life, he produced some of his best works, like the Sinfonietta and Glagolitic Mass. In 1926 he traveled to England, greeted by a wam welcome and many London performances of his works, which led to more international exposure for the composer.

    As Janáček neared the end of his life, he composed two last masterpieces: the operatic work The House of the Dead, and his "manifesto on love," the "Intimate Letters" string quartet. On a trip to Štramberk with Kamila and her son Otto, Janáček received a chill and fell ill with pneumonia. He breathed his last on August 12, 1928 at Ostrava. He was laid to rest in the Field of Honour at the Central Cemetery in Brno.

    Janáček's musical legacy is extensive. Arguably his best works lay in the operatic medium: Jenůfa, of course, as well as Káťa Kabanová, The Cunning Little Vixen, The Makropulos Affair, and From the House of the Dead. His two string quartets are standard repertory in chamber music. The Sinfonietta, the Glagolitic Mass, and the Tara Bulba rahpsody are other well-known works of Janáček. While Janáček wrote relatively few piano works, the two books of On an Overgrown Path, the I. X. 1905 piano sonata, and the cycle In the Mists remain beloved works in the pianists' repertoire.
     
  18. RSPIll

    RSPIll New Member

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    Are there any more composers in need of a bio??

    Scott
     
  19. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    @Sarah - thank you very much for the Janacek bio. I will put it up onto the site later tonight. Regarding your italicized words, IIRC, only administrators have those text options and editing button up here in the Announcements forum. Don't ask me why...
    I will italicize the words you wanted to be italicized.

    @Scott - yes, we still have some bios left, but at least now it's getting down to a respectable number of only six!

    They are:

    -Bowen
    -Lutoslawski
    -Martinu
    -Mayerl
    -Respighi
    -Warlock
     
  20. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Ok, Sarah, the bio is up. It's very nice - I did just a little bit of editing. And I'm very sorry and embarrassed to ask you this, but I've forgotten your last name.... :oops:
     

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